Skip Navigation
Flight Opportunities

PRIME-4.0:Miniaturized and Reusable Asteroid Regolith Microgravity Experiment for Suborbital and Orbital Use

Completed Technology Project
139 views

Project Description

PRIME-4.0:Miniaturized and Reusable Asteroid Regolith Microgravity Experiment for Suborbital and Orbital Use
Asteroids are covered with a loose regolith created by micrometeoroid impacts and collisions with other asteroids within the asteroid belt. On most asteroids, including the targets of NASA's unmanned and eventual manned exploration activities, the regolith is very loosely bound by interparticle surface forces and very weak gravity. The behavior of the regolith in this environment is dramatically different than in terrestrial environments. Anchoring equipment to the surface, avoiding dust hazards, collecting samples, and performing other exploration activities on and with the surface require understanding the response of regolith particles to a wide range of disturbances and perturbations in this unusual environment. The Physics of Regolith Impacts in Microgravity Experiment (PRIME) was developed to provide experimental data on the behavior of asteroidal regolith in near-zero-gravity conditions. PRIME’s main focus has centered on low-velocity collisions in microgravity and has enabled the quantitative analysis of the ejecta mass and velocity produced due to these low-energy impacts. This work is related to T0029. More »

Anticipated Benefits

Project Library

Primary U.S. Work Locations and Key Partners

Technology Transitions

Light bulb

Suggest an Edit

Recommend changes and additions to this project record.
^