NASA’s OSIRIS-REx Returning to Earth to Deliver Bennu Asteroid Sample Written 19 September 2023


Artist's rendition of OSIRIS-REx | NASA

CNET News reports that a pickpocketed piece “of a big asteroid named Bennu is on its way back to Earth.” NASA’s OSIRIS-REx is “winding down its mission more than seven years after launching from Cape Canaveral, Florida.” In 2020, the van-size spacecraft performed a “touch-and-go” maneuver and “swiped a few ounces of material from the space rock, which is really a pile of rubble held together by its own gravity.” OSIRIS-REx “lingered around Bennu until 2021, when it started its two-year journey back to Earth.” The long flight “ends on Sept. 24, when the spacecraft will jettison the capsule containing the sample.” The capsule will then “make a superheated trip through the atmosphere before parachuting in for a soft landing at the US military’s Utah Test and Training Range near Dugway, Utah.”
Full Story (CNET News)