With spacecraft components and “kits” becoming commodities available even to small university groups, advances in low thrust propulsion and optical communication have brought closer the day when small, inexpensive probes will ply the interplanetary spaceways. Recent conferences and workshops have been dedicated to the prospect of deep space CubeSats alone. At present, however, the infrastructure for deep space navigation is an expensive bottleneck to ubiquitous access to deep space. While star trackers provide attitude and crude position information, and inertial guidance units provide short-term velocity and position information, ultimately deep space navigation depends on two-way Doppler and ranging measurements from Earth. A giant leap in the accessibility of deep space exploration will occur when near-autonomous navigation becomes a reality. Not only does this break the tether to Earth, but it also enables exploration beyond the line of sight to Earth – behind planets, the sun, or even in interstellar space. The immediate benefit of the proposed study is an understanding of how unusual astronomical objects can be exploited for autonomous navigation. This information is a reasonable outcome of the proposed intensive observational campaign, and will explicitly determine whether further development of the concept is warranted. Promising results of this study bring nearer the day when student groups and other small organizations typical of today’s CubeSat community will be able to ply the entire solar system (or, in fact, beyond) as readily as they explore orbital space today. This will lead not only to new discovery, but to engagement of the public and academic community on an entirely new scale.