2019 December 23

Places for OSIRIS-REx to Touch Asteroid Bennu
Video Credit:
NASA, GSFC, U. Arizona, SVS, OSIRIS-REx

Explanation: Where is the best place to collect a surface sample from asteroid Bennu? Launched in 2016, NASA sent the robotic Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) to investigate the 500-meter-across asteroid 101955 Bennu. After mapping the near-Earth asteroid’s dark surface, OSIRIS-REx will next touch Bennu’s surface in 2020 August to collect a surface sample. The featured 23-second time-lapse video shows four candidate locations for the touch, from which NASA chose just one earlier this month. NASA chose the Nightingale near Bennu’s northern hemisphere as the primary touch-down spot because of its relative flatness, lack of boulders, and apparent abundance of fine-grained sand. Location Osprey is the backup. NASA plans to return soil samples from Bennu to Earth in 2023 for a detailed analysis.

OSIRIS-REx探测器贝努小行星的接触点
影像来源:
NASA, GSFC, U. Arizona, SVS, OSIRIS-REx

说明:何处是收集贝努小行星表面样本的最佳地点?美国宇航局(NASA)在2016年发射了起源-光谱-资源-安全-风化层探测器(OSIRIS-REx),用来探索直径为500米的贝努小行星101955。在测绘这颗近地小行星的黑暗表面之后,OSIRIS-REx将于2020年8月再次接触贝努小行星的表面并收集样本。这段时长为23秒的延时视频呈现了四个候选的接触点,而NASA在本月初已选择了其中一个。NASA选择了贝努小行星北半球附近的夜莺区作为主要接触点,因为这片区域相对平坦且没有岩石,而且表面上有大量的细沙。备选地点则是鱼鹰区。NASA计划在2023年将贝努小行星的土壤样本送回地球,并进行详细分析。

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