After coming to grips with the tough truth of asteroid Bennu’s surface area, NASA, the US space firm, has actually finally chosen 4 possible sites for its spacecraft to “identify” its cosmic dancing companion.
Considering that its arrival in December 2018, the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft has actually mapped the whole asteroid in order to recognize the safest as well as most obtainable places for the spacecraft to accumulate an example.
These four sites currently will be researched in additional detail in order to pick the last two websites – a key and backup– in December, NASA stated in a declaration on Tuesday.
“We knew that Bennu would certainly amaze us, so we came gotten ready for whatever we could find,” stated Dante Lauretta, OSIRIS-REx principal detective at the University of Arizona, Tucson.
The four prospect example sites on Bennu are assigned as Nightingale, Kingfisher, Osprey, and also Sandpiper– all birds belonging to Egypt.
Considering that reaching near-Earth asteroid Bennu, NASA’s OSIRIS-REx objective has been examining this small world of stones, rocks, as well as loosened rubble– as well as looking for a location to touch down.
The goal is to gather an example of Bennu in mid-2020, and also return it to Planet in late 2023.
This autumn, OSIRIS-REx will certainly start detailed analyses of the four prospect sites throughout the goal’s reconnaissance stage.
The 2nd as well as third stages of reconnaissance will start in early 2020.
OSIRIS-REx example collection is set up for the latter half of 2020, and the spacecraft will certainly return the asteroid samples to Planet on September 24, 2023.