Science Concept Information Sheet
Form completed by:
Interplanetary Dust Particles
Description of the potential science
/ science goals
Collection of IDPs represent sample return
from small body sources whose origins are throughout
the solar system.
By gaining time resolution on collection, one can potentially enhance sampling
material from specific objects (e.g., a comet associated with a meteor shower) and even specific
n the asteroid belt (by sampling at times of year when the Earth passes through their
Relevance of the science (Why is this important?)
What are the specific Decadal ties?
Addresses SMD 2010 Science Plan Science Area Objectives for Plan
Decadal pg 72
What Were the Initial Stages, Conditions, and Processes of Solar System Formation and the Nature
of the Interstellar Matter That Was Incorporated? Over the next decade important breakthroughs in understanding
of presolar materials and early nebular
cesses will certainly come from applying ever advancing analytical
techniques in the analysis of meteorites
interplanetary dust, and Stardust samples.
Addresses Inventory solar system objects and identify the processes active in and among them
measurements are required to achieve the science?
A collection system, probably deployed on top of the balloons. Some time resolution would be of value,
so perhaps a collection system of sheets of Velcro type material (the rings, not the hooks) on a roller
Before return to Earth, all of the collection material could be rolled into a container that would be
delivered to the ground.
What are the driving requirements to achieve the measurements?
(E.g. time on target, frequency of
observations, aperture, foca
l length, wavelengths,
pointing precision and stability,
are repeat flights required?
or whatever else that may
the hardware or mission
Altitude, time of year.
Telescope focal length:
Required time on target:
Exposure times TBD.
Are there other ways to achieve this science, and if so, why would a balloon platform be preferable?
This could be
achieved to some extent using aircraft, but at a lower altitude. Larger collecting surfaces
may be available on balloons and the higher altitude could benefit from less sedimentation times and
less mixing of material impacting the Earth’s atmosphere over t
ime. This is an experiment that might be
on to balloon flights for other purposes.
What are the potential observation targets?
Interplanetary Dust Particles come from asteroids and comets.
What planetary science disciplines would this involve?
Point of contact for follow
on questions (Name and contact info)
Mark Sykes (