Comet Rendezvous Asteroid Flyby

The Comet Rendezvous Asteroid Flyby (CRAF) was a cancelled plan for a NASA led exploratory mission designed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory during the mid-to-late 1980s and early 1990s, that planned to send a spacecraft to encounter an asteroid, and then to rendezvous with a comet and fly alongside it for nearly three years. The project was eventually canceled when it went over budget; most of the money still left was redirected to its twin spacecraft, Cassini-Huygens, destined for Saturn, so it could survive Congressional budget cutbacks. Most of CRAF's scientific objectives were later accomplished by the smaller NASA spacecraft Stardust and Deep Impact, and the rest will be accomplished by ESA's flagship Rosetta mission.

Read more about Comet Rendezvous Asteroid Flyby:  Overview, Spacecraft Design

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Comet Rendezvous Asteroid Flyby - Spacecraft Design - Instrumentation
... All of the phenomena associated with comets were to be examined by CRAF's instruments ... And because of the long duration of the planned rendezvous — almost three years — it was expected to fill in many of the major gaps in scientific understanding of the strange ... Photos also would help scientists determine the comet's size and structure, the location of its poles, its rotation rate and geological structure ...

Famous quotes containing the word comet:

    By being seldom seen, I could not stir
    But like a comet I was wondered at.
    William Shakespeare (1564–1616)