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NASA asteroid sampling spacecraft will go to study “the chaos it caused”



The moment Osiris-Rex met Bennu.

NASA/Gotha/University of Arizona

October 2020, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) The Osiris-Rex spacecraft took a bite of the asteroid Bennu. Before Osiris-Rex returns to Earth to provide a bounty, it will revisit the scene of the robbery.

NASA announced on Thursday that the spacecraft that is investigating the asteroid will conduct a last very close flyby of Bennu to discover “the level of chaos it has caused.”

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Osiris-Rex was a bit greedy during the sample collection process, Gravel spillage It must be stored faster than expected. It left marks on the asteroid.

NASA said: “After Bennu’s surface was severely disturbed by a sample collection event, the Osiris-Rex team decided to add the last flyover.” “During the landing, the sampling head of the spacecraft sank 1.6 feet into the surface of the asteroid ( 48.8 cm) and pressurized nitrogen gas was launched.” The launched thruster pushed Osiris-Rex away, which also disturbed the ground.

NASA has scheduled the flyover to take place on April 7, with the goal of taking images of the collection site at a close distance of 2.3 miles (3.7 kilometers).

Osiris-Rex will continue to wander around Bennu until May 10, when it will begin a two-year journey back to Earth. The Bennu fragments will be delivered to the scientists via the sample return module discarded by the spacecraft.

At the same time, NASA will compare the before and after images of the sample site to understand how big the Osiris-Rex tattoo is on Bennu’s body.

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