NASA Readies OSIRIS-REx for Second Asteroid Landing Rehearsal Written 10 August 2020


Artist's rendition of OSIRIS-REx | NASA

SPACE reported that NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft is scheduled to practice its touchdown sequence on asteroid Bennu for the second time on Tuesday. The spacecraft “will rehearse the touch-and-go sample-collection event, similar to the mission’s April 14 checkpoint rehearsal, which practiced the first two maneuvers of the descent.” The spacecraft also “will add a third maneuver, called the matchpoint burn, and fly closer to the sample site, known as Nightingale, than it has before.” As “part of the matchpoint burn, OSIRIS-REx will fly in tandem with Bennu’s rotation for the first time.” The spacecraft also will rehearse extending its “robotic sampling arm, collecting images for its autonomous navigation system, and moving its solar panels into position away from the asteroid’s surface.” The rehearsal will mark the final touchdown sequence test before the spacecraft attempts to collect its first sample from the asteroid on October 20.
Full Story (SPACE)