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Behind the Scenes: Outfitting the DART Spacecraft with Thermal Blankets

(feat. Elisabeth Abel)

Building a spacecraft requires the coordinated efforts of various teams and individuals who all play an important role in getting a mission off the ground. As NASA's Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) undergoes integration and testing at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab (APL) in Laurel, Maryland, hear from various team members with diverse roles on the first ever planetary defense test mission.

Elisabeth Abel is the lead thermal engineer on the DART mission. She oversees thermal design and analysis, thermal hardware procurement, fabrication and installation, and thermal testing of the spacecraft. Outfitting a spacecraft like DART with thermal blankets is an important step in preparing the spacecraft for its journey through space – thermal blankets can keep it warm or cool, depending on the conditions it's experiencing. See how the team at APL prepares the DART spacecraft for harsh temperatures in this behind-the-scenes video.