The challenge: design a system capable of capturing an entire asteroid.
Requirements: non-inflatable concept; assume composition, internal structure, and physical integrity of target will be unknown until rendezvous; asteroidal material must be accessible via EVA after capture and return to lunar orbit.
A team of JETS engineers accepted the challenge, proposed a concept, won a NASA Phase I contract, and developed a 1/5-scale functional asteroid capture system test article.
SAFER is designed to be a self-rescue device in case a crewmember becomes detached during a spacewalk. But what if the crewmember was rendered incapable of returning to the ISS on his/her own power? Jacobs engineers are working with NASA engineers to develop a solution.