NASA’s robot is about to land on the Bennu asteroid
NASA’s Osiris-Rex spacecraft, about the size of a truck, will make a short landing on the Bennu asteroid next week and return to earth with the samples it has collected. While the event is of paramount importance to NASA, space exploration serves as a potential boon to better understand the solar system.
Osiris-Rex spacecraft lands on Bennu’s surface
NASA’s spacecraft Osiris-Rex is expected to land on the asteroid, whose full name is 101955 Bennu, on Tuesday, October 20. Designed for more than 10 years, the spacecraft began its journey on the Atlas V rocket in Florida on September 8, 2016. Since then, the mission team has spent 2 years around the rock to select the best sampling point. Following the rehearsals in which samples were collected in the past months, the appropriate point was selected and contact studies with Bennu started.
The Bennu asteroid is thought to be a window into the solar system. The biggest proof of this is that carbon, which is one of the building blocks of both planets and life, covers the surface of the planet. On the other hand, water and metal residues detected on the surface as a result of research may also be a pioneer for space mining in the future.
The spacecraft will fire its thrusters to get away from Bennu after collecting the samples. He will then continue to orbit the asteroid and begin his two-year return adventure to earth at the end of the year.
The landing, which will take place on Tuesday, October 20, will be watched live by NASA’s broadcast. On the other hand, you can visit the spacecraft’s Twitter page to get the latest updates about the landing.