Hayabusa2 Delivers Asteroid Samples


The Hayabusa2 spacecraft has brought back to Earth samples from asteroid Ryugu. This material was collected in two separate sampling activities using a metre-long sample horn in 2019. The spacecraft spent 18 months near the asteroid, mapping and investigating its composition, surface temperature and potential magnetic field before it sent the horn to the surface to collect a sample.

Ryugu belongs to a class of asteroids that have remained quite unchanged since their creation during the early, formative years of the solar system. The Hayabusa2 spacecraft, which was launched by the Japanese state space agency, JAXA, is now headed back into deep space. It will fly past asteroid 2001 CC21 in 2026 and asteroid 1998 KY26 in July 2031. 

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