Near Earth Object Modelling and Payloads for Protection


Planetary defence, science or resource missions to asteroids require new advances in numerical modelling, payload development, data processing technology, and operational capabilities. The NEO-MAPP consortium includes scientific and industrial experts with a solid expertise in asteroid science and space missions and is, therefore, ideally placed to further advance NEO scientific research and technologies. In a multi-disciplinary and synergetic approach, NEO-MAPP incorporates two activities: numerical modelling, and technology and data processing developments. NEOMAPP will bring modelling capabilities well beyond the state-of-the-art, producing major advancements in our understanding of the response of NEOs to a kinetic impact or an Earth encounter, and of their physical and dynamical properties. NEO-MAPP will also increase the maturity of five innovative payloads specifically optimized for NEO space missions and devoted to the surface, sub-surface and internal properties of a NEO; parameters that are currently poorly constrained yet of high importance to planetary defence. In parallel, the NEO-MAPP team will define innovative measurement and data processing strategies, combining multiple payloads, in order to maximize the exploitation of scientific and technical data. These objectives will be addressed by adopting a framework of two “Reference Missions”. The team will ensure that the mission scenarios are both highly relevant to the current international and European programmatic context while remaining generic enough to be transposable to any alternative scenarios. NEO-MAPP will thus provide significant advances in our understanding of NEOs while ensuring the future leadership of European scientists and engineers in both planetary defence and small-body exploration. The project outcome, especially regarding impact mitigation (but also asteroid mining), responds to a public demand and, therefore, will have a high social and environmental impact.

Project details

Unibo Team Leader: Paolo Tortora

Unibo involved Department/s:
Dipartimento di Ingegneria Industriale

C.N.R.S. Delegation Centre-Est(France)

Other Participants:
Universidad De Alicante (Spain)
Institut Superieur De L'Aeronautique Et De L'Espace (France)
Dlr Deutsches Zentrum Fur Luft Und Raumfahrt E.V. (Germany)
Museum für Naturkunde Berlin (Germany)
Airbus Defence And Space Gmbh (Germany)
Gmvis Skysoft S.A. (Portugal)
Koninklijke Sterrenwacht Van Belgie (Belgium)
Instituto De Astrofisica De Canarias (Spain)
Université Grenoble Alpes (France)
ALMA MATER STUDIORUM - Università di Bologna (Italy)
Asteroid Foundation (Luxembourg)
Fciencias Id - Associação Para A Investigação E Desenvolvimento De Ciencias (Portugal)
Aristotele University Of Thessaloniki (Greece)
Universitat Bern (Switzerland)

Total Eu Contribution: Euro (EUR) 3.998.591,00
Project Duration in months: 40
Start Date: 01/02/2020
End Date: 31/05/2023

Cordis webpage
Project website

Industry, innovation and infrastructure This project contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

UE flag This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 870377