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Today's Nasa Announcement: & # 39; Major & # 39; new mission to explore our solar system is revealed



NASA will announce plans for a major new scientific mission to explore the solar system.

The announcement, scheduled for Thursday night, will describe the Space Agency's next flagship research project.

Although only a few details are known, it is speculated that it could be one of two missions: either to extract samples of a cometary nucleus and bring them back to Earth, or a trip to the largest Saturn moon, Titan.


These rumors circulated after Curt Niebur, chief scientist for the New Frontiers program, was selected as one of NASA's experts for the teleconference, starting at 4:00 pm EDT (9PM BST).

In 2017, Nasa announced that it had selected two concepts for a robot mission to be launched in the mid-2020s under the motto New Frontiers.

The first was a Comet Astrobiology Exploration Sample Return (Caesar) mission that attempted a sample of 67P / Churyumov-Gerasimenko to return a comet researched by the spacecraft Rosetta of the European Space Agency to determine its origin and history.

The second mission was Dragonfly, a drone-like aircraft that would explore the habitability of dozens of locations on Saturn's moon Titan, described by NASA as the "oceanic world in our solar system".


Mysteriously shining light on Mars, captured by Nasa's curiosity probe

The selected mission will be the fourth in the New Frontiers portfolio. Its predecessors are the New Horizons Mission to Pluto and a Kuiper Belt object called the 2014 MU69, the Juno mission to Jupiter and OSIRIS-REx with which they will meet and send back a sample of the asteroid Bennu.

How to Watch the Announcement Live

The Independent will provide ongoing updates on our own live blog.

NASA also broadcasts the event on its television channel, the agency's website, Facebook, YouTube, Periscope and USTREAM.

The agency will hold a media conference on the same day at 5:00 pm local time with: Thomas Zurbuchen, Deputy Administrator of NASA's Science Mission Directorate; Lori Glaze, Director of NASA's Department of Planetary Science; Curt Niebur and the main investigator of the selected mission.

The conference call will be broadcast live on the NASA website.

On Monday, July 1, Nasa will also host a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) on ​​the mission announcement. Questions can be submitted to the Reddit AMA event if it starts at 3pm.


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