The NASA Desert Research and Technology Studies team, also known as Desert RATS, marks its fourteenth annual field test and the first time a mission to an asteroid will be simulated. While NASA has landed astronauts on the moon and rovers on Mars, the agency is only beginning to tackle the challenges of visiting an asteroid. Desert RATS team members will conduct simulated human and robotic space exploration test activities in extreme Arizona terrain to investigate and develop realistic technical and mission-driven operations similar to those of an asteroid mission.
The public is invited to follow along during the simulated mission. The Desert RATS team will use Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Ustream to share their experience online.
Visit the Desert RATS 2011 Education and Public Outreach Activities and Events webpage for the latest schedule of daily events that will keep you connected with the DRATS Team. http://www.nasa.gov/exploration/analogs/desertrats/activities.html
The Desert RATS Facebook page has video clips featuring team members discussing upcoming field activities and answers to questions from Facebook and Twitter followers.
Check out the following live streamed events on the Desert RATS Ustream channel. http://www.ustream.tv/channel/desertrats
To learn more about the Desert RATS project, visit http://www.nasa.gov/exploration/analogs/desertrats/index.html.
Follow the latest Desert RATS mission by visiting the following sites.
You Tube: http://www.youtube.com/user/NASAanalogTV#p/c/7C4E0E50595B6B13