NASA needs you if you live in this area of ​​France

NASA needs you if you live in this area of ​​France

On October 16, NASA’s “Lucy” probe was launched from Earth. It then headed in the direction of the Trojan asteroids, an area of ​​the solar system close to Jupiter about which we still know very little. Scientifically, the study of these celestial bodies could give us some answers about how the solar system was built.

But to complete their mission, NASA needs you. In a press release, he asks everyone who lives on this diagonal (see image above) to grab their telescope and start looking for stars. As astrophysicist Eric Lagadec explains on his twitter accountthe mission is quite simple.


A rendering of the Lucy probe © NASA

The goal is to point your astronomical telescope at Eurybate. At 4 am on October 23, the asteroid will pass in front of a star, creating an occultation. The phenomenon will be very fast, it will not last more than 10 seconds. Therefore, it will be necessary to place yourself in the right place to follow the passage of the beam of this celestial body of about sixty kilometers in diameter.

This simultaneous observation, made from all four corners of the globe, should allow NASA to learn more about this asteroid. During its mission, the Lucy probe should fly much closer, in 2027. Until then, the US space agency tries to collect as much information as possible to make the mission as rich as possible.

For all the people who, therefore, have the necessary equipment to carry out an observation of this type (that is, a fairly powerful telescope or digital camera), it is possible to register directly on the site of the French astronomy association to share your results and help. Sciences.

Everyone can advance science.

There have been more and more “herd science” missions around the world in recent years. If the great observatories such as the VLT (Very Large Telescope) based in Chile, or even the James Webb are extraordinary tools, nothing replaces a multiplication of observations.

hubble telescope

The Hubble telescope, one of the best tools at our disposal to study the sky © NASA

By accumulating the views, space agencies can aggregate the data and have much more information about a phenomenon or an object than during a single observation. By implementing these multiple observations, agencies like NASA also increase their chances of getting good results.

If the observation had only been made from a single point in France, the imperfect weather conditions could have reduced all of NASA’s work to nothing. In order not to miss this very instructive 10 seconds, the US space agency needs you to observe the asteroid Eurybate.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *