[PPS01-P07] Small Next-generation Atmospheric Probe (SNAP) Concept for In-Situ Atmosephric Exploration of Uranus and/or Neptune
Keywords:Uranus, Neptune, Atmosphere, Planetary Exploration
We envision that the science objectives can be achieved with a 30-kg entry probe ~0.5m in diameter (less than half the size of the Galileo probe) that reaches 5-bar pressure-altitude and returns data to Earth via the carrier spacecraft. As the baseline instruments, the probe will carry an Atmospheric Structure Instrument (ASI) that measures the temperature, pressure and acceleration, a carbon nanotube-based NanoChem atmospheric composition sensor, and an Ultra-Stable Oscillator (USO) to conduct a Doppler Wind Experiment (DWE). We also catalog promising technologies currently under development that will strengthen small atmospheric entry probe missions in the future. While SNAP is applicable to multiple planets, we examine the feasibility, benefits and impacts of adding SNAP to the Uranus Orbiter and Probe flagship mission.