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Overview of Phobos/Deimos Regolith Ion Sample Mission (PRISM) concept
Author(s): Pamela Clark; Michael Collier; Micah Schaible; William M. Farrell; David Folta; Kyle M. Hughes; John W. Keller; Ben Malphrus; Andrew S. Rivkin; Scott Murchie; Dana Hurley; Jasper Halekas; Richard Vondrak; Timothy Stubbs; Rosemary Killen; Menelaos Sarantos; Sarah L. Jones; Jared Espley; Gina Dibraccio
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Paper Abstract

Far more definitive information on composition is required to resolve the question of origin for the Martian moons Phobos and Deimos. Current infrared spectra of the objects are inconclusive due to the lack of strong diagnostic features. Definitive compositional measurements of Phobos could be obtained using in-situ X-ray, gamma-ray, or neutron spectroscopy or collecting and returning samples to Earth for analysis. We have proposed, in lieu of those methods, to derive Phobos and Deimos compositional data from secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) measurements by calibrating the instrument to elemental abundance measurements made for known samples in the laboratory. We describe the Phobos/Deimos Regolith Ion Sample Mission (PRISM) concept here. PRISM utilizes a high-resolution TOF plasma composition analyzer to make SIMS measurements by observing the sputtered species from various locations of the moons' surfaces. In general, the SIMS technique and ion mass spectrometers complement and expand quadrupole mass spectrometer measurements by collecting ions that have been energized to higher energies, 50-100 eV, and making measurements at very low densities and pressures. Furthermore, because the TOF technique accepts all masses all the time, it obtains continuous measurements and does not require stepping through masses. The instrument would draw less than 10 W and weigh less than 5 kg. The spacecraft, nominally a radiation-hardened 12U CubeSat, would use a low-thrust Solar Electric Propulsion system to send it on a two-year journey to Mars, where it would co-orbit with Deimos and then Phobos at distances as low as 27 km.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 September 2018
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 10769, CubeSats and NanoSats for Remote Sensing II, 107690I (18 September 2018); doi: 10.1117/12.2322415
Show Author Affiliations
Pamela Clark, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
Michael Collier, Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Micah Schaible, Georgia Institute of Technology (United States)
William M. Farrell, Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
David Folta, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Kyle M. Hughes, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
John W. Keller, Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Ben Malphrus, Morehead State Univ. (United States)
Andrew S. Rivkin, Johns Hopkins Univ. Applied Physics Lab. (United States)
Scott Murchie, Johns Hopkins Univ. Applied Physics Lab. (United States)
Dana Hurley, Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
Johns Hopkins Univ. Applied Physics Lab. (United States)
Jasper Halekas, Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
Univ. of Iowa (United States)
Richard Vondrak, Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Timothy Stubbs, Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Rosemary Killen, Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Menelaos Sarantos, Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Sarah L. Jones, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Jared Espley, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Gina Dibraccio, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10769:
CubeSats and NanoSats for Remote Sensing II
Thomas S. Pagano; Charles D. Norton, Editor(s)

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