OSIRIS-Rex: Bringing Home Pieces of an Asteroid

August 18, 2016 2:59 AM

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OSIRIS-Rex: Bringing Home Pieces of an Asteroid

In 2023, a bit of the primordial solar system will return to Earth. That's when NASA's OSIRIS-Rex mission will return a sample of the asteroid Bennu, a carbon-rich rock hosting traces of the early solar system. While there, the mission will conduct an in-depth study of the rocky body, learning more about how sunlight can shift its position, before gathering a small sample to return to Earth.

After its September 8, 2016, launch, the Origins-Spectral Interpretation-Resource Identification-Security-Regolith Explorer, or OSIRIS-Rex, will spend two years traveling through space to arrive at Bennu in 2018. The second mission in the world to bring back a bit of an asteroid, OSIRIS-Rex will fol...

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