36th DPS Meeting, 8-12 November 2004
Session 14 Future Missions
Poster I, Tuesday, November 9, 2004, 4:00-7:00pm, Exhibition Hall 1A

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[14.02] Dawn Mission Update

M. V. Sykes (PSI), C. T. Russell (UCLA), A. Coradini (IFSI), U. Christensen, M. C. de Sanctis (IAFS), W. C. Feldman (LANL), R. Jaumann (DLR), U. Keller (MPI-Ae), A. S. Konopliv (JPL), T. B. McCord (PSI), L. A. McFadden (Univ. Maryland), H. Y. McSween (Univ. Tenn.), S. Mottola (DLR), G. Neukum (Freie Univ.), C. M. Pieters (Brown Univ.), T. H. Prettyman (LANL), C. A. Raymond (JPL), D. E. Smith (NASA GSFC), B. G. Williams (JPL), J. Wise (New Roads Sch,), M. T. Zuber (MIT)

Dawn, the ninth Discovery mission, will be the first spacecraft to rendezvous with two solar system bodies, the main belt asteroids Vesta and Ceres. This is made possible by utilizing ion propulsion to reach its targets and to maneuver into (and depart) orbits about these bodies. Vesta and Ceres are two terrestrial protoplanets that have survived since the earliest epoch of the solar system and will provide important insights into planet building processes and their evolution under very different circumstances, with and without water. Dawn carries a double framing camera, a visible and infrared mapping spectrometer, and a gamma ray and neutron detector. At Vesta our studies will include the volcanic emplacement of basalts, its differentiation, the possible exposure of its interior near the south pole. At Ceres our studies will include the role of water in its evolution, hydration processes on its surface, and the possible existence of a subsurface ocean. The mission has passed its critical design review and is scheduled to be launched in June 2006 with arrival at Vesta in 2011 and Ceres in 2015. Operation strategies will be presented. Groundbased observations of Vesta, Ceres, and Vesta family members over broad wavelengths, periods and phases will play an important role in detailed mission planning.

If you would like more information about this abstract, please follow the link to http://www-ssc.igpp.ucla.edu/dawn. This link was provided by the author. When you follow it, you will leave the Web site for this meeting; to return, you should use the Back comand on your browser.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: sykes@psi.edu

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 36 #4
© 2004. The American Astronomical Soceity.