Abstract.

The Deep Impact mission will provide the first data on the interior of a cometary nucleus and a comparison of those data with data on the surface. Two spacecraft, an impactor and a flyby spacecraft, will arrive at comet 9P/Tempel 1 on 4 July 2005 to create and observe the formation and final properties of a large crater that is predicted to be approximately 30m deep with the dimensions of a football stadium. The flyby and impactor instruments will yield images and near infrared spectra (1-5 microns) of the surface at unprecedented spatial resolutions both before and after the impact of a 350 kg spacecraft at 10.2 km/sec. These data will provide unique information on the structure of the nucleus near the surface and its chemical composition. They will also used to interpret the evolutionary effects on remote sensing data and will indicate how those data can be used to better constrain conditions in the early solar system.