Picture provided by ESA
To understand the other planets of Solar System, man is on a continuous mission of starting numerous asteroids. Even though there is a lot of place in space, the primary issue of these asteroids colliding with each other or even with earth which may lead a lot of human loss is worrying the scientists down here. If an asteroid hits with the planet at the right spot, then it is sure to wipe out a lot of humanity. Hence a new spacecraft is said to be launching in 2026 to find out the probability at which these asteroids may collide.
NASA and European Space Agency, in the coming decade, is said to be taking precautionary steps on making a plan that can defend the colliding asteroids. In 2022 NASA will launch DART probe that crashes into the nearest asteroid to change its movement. Again in 2026 European Science Agency is said to be starting another examination of their own to study the outcome of the 2022 launch. By doing so both the agencies will work jointly on a single mission of investigating the collisions happening up there.
Known as the Hera Probe of European Science Agency (ESA), it will launch into asteroids which are in binary pair and those that pass close to the earth regularly. The binary pair includes one large asteroid called Didymos and one small asteroid called Didymoon. Approximately 25 percent of asteroids presently in the solar system are similar binary pairs, but a spacecraft has never visited any of them before. This mission aims to explore various methods of studying asteroids and their method of collision in orbit through Lidar technology as traditional methods fail on binary asteroids.
The larger asteroids will be watched over by Hera at a very close distance and its process of shifting as well as gravity response will be studied so that missions in future can be made victorious. Hera will also have on it two CubeSats which are deployed to test the scientific instruments along with new technologies for communication with ground stations. Overall, Hera will help the understanding of asteroids as the planetary defense technology advances making planet earth a safer place. A lot of work should go into the spacecraft within 2026, but this is already up and is undoubtedly going to do a good job in space.