Japan scientists to study source of high heat on asteroid
About 3 grams (0.1 ounce) of the black granules are from Ryugu's surface and were gathered when Hayabusa2 touched down on the asteroid in April 2019. AdBased on near-infrared spectrophotometer analysis of data transmitted by Hayabusa2, JAXA scientists found that the asteroid was exposed to extremely high temperatures both on its surface and underground, possibly caused by an internal source of heat or planetary collisions rather than heat from the sun. Kohei Kitazato, a University of Aizu planetary scientist working with JAXA, said his team found indications of heat exceeding 300 degrees Celsius (572 degrees Fahrenheit) both on the asteroid surface and underground. AdJAXA is continuing an initial examination of the asteroid samples ahead of fuller studies next year. Following studies in Japan, some of the samples will be shared with NASA and other international space agencies for additional research.
Success! OSIRIS-REx Captures a “Large Amount” of Asteroid Material
Quoting NASA, it’s a “large amount!” The spacecraft captured images of the sample collector head as it moved through several different positions. They came to this conclusion after comparing images of the empty collector head with Oct. 22 images of the TAGSAM head after the sample collection event. The OSIRIS-Rex team will now focus on stowing the sample in the Sample Return Capsule (SRC), where any loose material will be kept safe during the spacecraft’s journey back to Earth. Newly available analyses show that the collector head was flush with Bennu’s surface when it made contact and when a nitrogen gas bottle was fired to stir surface material. All data so far suggest that the collector head is holding much more than two ounces of regolith.
NASA spacecraft sent asteroid rubble flying in sample grab
In this image taken from video released by NASA, the Osiris-Rex spacecraft touches the surface of asteroid Bennu on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2020. (NASA via AP)CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – NASA's Osiris-Rex spacecraft crushed rocks and sent rubble flying as it briefly touched an asteroid, a strong indication that samples were collected for return to Earth, officials said Wednesday. Scientists won't know until next week how much was gathered at asteroid Bennu — they want at least a handful of the cosmic rubble. Japan has taken asteroid samples twice. ___The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education.
NASA touches an asteroid: What to know about OSIRIS-REx mission
Tuesday evening marked another NASA milestone: A spacecraft called OSIRIS-REx touched an asteroid, called Bennu, and collected a sample for return to Earth! Over the past year, OSIRIS-REx has been orbiting Bennu and taking increasingly detailed images to find a site. When the mission was originally developed, it was assumed that Bennu would be mostly smooth, with lots of regolith (“dirt”) and perhaps some rocks. How does NASA know if they collected enough material to return to Earth? This is pretty cool science: once back in orbit around Bennu, OSIRIS-REx will extend the TAGSAM arm laterally out to the side of the spacecraft and spin the spacecraft.
How scientists know we’re not going to get squashed by an asteroid
In a recent episode of the podcast “Space Curious,” planetary scientists helped us understand why this is. They also explained how we know where asteroids are, and why we’re not all going to get squashed by one anytime soon. “The main reason we go to Bennu is because it is the most potentially hazardous asteroid,” Campins said. “It’s a primitive asteroid,” Campins said. Campins said when someone reads about an asteroid headed for Earth, it’s a good idea to do some fact checking.
NASA spacecraft OSIRIS-REX attempts to land on ancient asteroid
A NASA spacecraft is preparing to land on an asteroid Tuesday to collect a sample. Spacecraft OSIRIS-REX is descending toward an asteroid named Bennu to suck up rubble as a sample for closer study back on Earth. OSIRIS-REX descended Tuesday toward the surface of the asteroid, which is 200 million miles away. The spacecraft dropped out of orbit around asteroid Bennu right on time, beginning a 4 1/2-hour plunge to the rough, boulder-covered face of the ancient space rock. Bennu’s gravity was too low for the spacecraft to land — the asteroid is just 1,670 feet (510 meters) across.