Project Icarus is an ambitious five-year study into launching an unmanned spacecraft to an interstellar destination. Headed by the Tau Zero Foundation, a non-profit group of scientists dedicated to interstellar spaceflight, Icarus is working to develop a spacecraft that can travel to a nearby star. Dr. Robert Adams, study lead in the Advanced Concepts Office at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center and Lead Designer for the Mission Analysis and Performance Module for Project Icarus, explains the realities behind getting an interstellar spacecraft to its destination. WIDE ANGLE: Project Icarus : Reaching for Interstellar Space One critical feature of any interstellar voyage is the "mission analysis," which organizes science objectives, plots movement through space and determines abort and correction scenarios. Some refer to this effort as "trajectory analysis" or "astrodynamics" but it encompasses more than simply plotting a path through the heavens. Com
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