OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

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Arizona: A Visual Journey to Bennu, the Target of OSIRIS-REx

Postby bystander » Fri Nov 14, 2014 6:23 pm

A Visual Journey to Bennu, the Target of OSIRIS-REx
University of Arizona | 2014 Nov 12

The public gets to meet Bennu, the target asteroid of the UA-led OSIRIS-REx mission, with an upcoming movie highlighting the asteroid and what it takes to grab a sample of the stuff the solar system is made of. ...

The OSIRIS-REx target asteroid (101955) Bennu: Constraints on its physical,
geological, and dynamical nature from astronomical observations
- D. S. Lauretta et al
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Re: OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

Postby THX1138 » Tue Nov 18, 2014 9:10 am

Cynical, you bet but sometimes i think that what this planet needs is a good old fashion mass extinction of humans on a hemisphere or two lest we overpopulate this rock and pollute the whole lot of our kind into oblivion

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Re: OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

Postby rstevenson » Tue Nov 18, 2014 2:58 pm

Starting with West Covina, CA?

Rob

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Re: OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

Postby Chris Peterson » Tue Nov 18, 2014 3:07 pm

THX1138 wrote:Cynical, you bet but sometimes i think that what this planet needs is a good old fashion mass extinction of humans on a hemisphere or two lest we overpopulate this rock and pollute the whole lot of our kind into oblivion

We're managing that quite fine without any asteroidal involvement, thank you.
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Re: OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

Postby THX1138 » Thu Nov 20, 2014 12:59 pm

@ rstevenson Someone else's hemisphere hopefully but I'm willing to do my part if not
@ Chris On the path of polluting a few billion of us into oblivion without any outside intervention
Yep I do suppose so.

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UArizona: Instrument Delivered for 2016 Asteroid Sample Return

Postby bystander » Fri Dec 18, 2015 7:40 pm

International Instrument Delivered for 2016 NASA Asteroid Sample Return Mission
University of Arizona | 2015 Dec 17

A sophisticated laser-based mapping instrument has arrived at Lockheed Martin Space Systems in Denver for integration onto NASA’s Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft.

The OSIRIS-REx Laser Altimeter (OLA), contributed by the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), will create 3-D maps of asteroid Bennu to help the mission team select a sample collection site. ...

OLA is an advanced LIDAR (Light Detecting and Ranging) system that will scan the entire surface of the asteroid to create a highly accurate, 3-D shape model of Bennu. This will provide mission scientists with fundamental data on the asteroid’s shape, topography (distribution of boulders, rocks and other surface features), surface processes and evolution. An accurate shape model will also be an important tool for navigators as they maneuver the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft around the 500-meter-wide (0.3-mile-wide) asteroid. In exchange for providing the OLA instrument, CSA will receive a portion of the returned asteroid sample for study by Canadian scientists. ...
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NASA Prepares to Launch First U.S. Asteroid Sample Return Mission

Postby bystander » Fri Aug 19, 2016 3:30 pm

NASA Prepares to Launch First U.S. Asteroid Sample Return Mission
NASA | OSIRIS-REx | 2016 Aug 17

NASA is preparing to launch its first mission to return a sample of an asteroid to Earth. The mission will help scientists investigate how planets formed and how life began, as well as improve our understanding of asteroids that could impact Earth.

The Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft will travel to the near-Earth asteroid Bennu and bring a sample back to Earth for intensive study. Launch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. EDT Thursday, Sept. 8 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. ...

OSIRIS-REx has five instruments to explore Bennu:

  • OSIRIS-REx Camera Suite (OCAMS) – A system consisting of three cameras provided by the University of Arizona, Tucson, will observe Bennu and provide global imaging, sample site imaging, and will witness the sampling event.
  • OSIRIS-REx Laser Altimeter (OLA) – A scanning LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) contributed by the Canadian Space Agency will be used to measure the distance between the spacecraft and Bennu's surface, and will map the shape of the asteroid.
  • OSIRIS-REx Thermal Emission Spectrometer (OTES) – An instrument provided by Arizona State University in Tempe that will investigate mineral abundances and provide temperature information with observations in the thermal infrared spectrum.
  • OSIRIS-REx Visible and Infrared Spectrometer (OVIRS) – An instrument provided by NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland and designed to measure visible and infrared light from Bennu to identify mineral and organic material.
  • Regolith X-ray Imaging Spectrometer (REXIS) – A student experiment provided by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard University in Cambridge, which will observe the X-ray spectrum to identify chemical elements on Bennu’s surface and their abundances.

Additionally, the spacecraft has two systems that will enable the sample collection and return:

  • Touch-And-Go Sample Acquisition Mechanism (TAGSAM) – An articulated robotic arm with a sampler head, provided by Lockheed Martin Space Systems in Denver, to collect a sample of Bennu's surface.
  • OSIRIS-REx Sample Return Capsule (SRC) – A capsule with a heat shield and parachutes in which the spacecraft will return the asteroid sample to Earth, provided by Lockheed Martin.
...
http://www.nasa.gov/osiris-rex
http://www.asteroidmission.org/
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SETI: Mission to Examine the Past & Safeguard the Future

Postby bystander » Tue Sep 06, 2016 5:46 pm

Mission to Examine the Past and Safeguard the Future
SETI Institute | 2016 Sep 06

NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft is slated to launch from Cape Canaveral on Thursday, September 8th. Its mission is to rendezvous with asteroid Bennu in 2018, take a sample from its surface, and return that sample to Earth in 2023.

Why are scientists so interested in this ancient lump of rock? First, Bennu is one of the darkest objects in the Solar System, suggesting it is rich in organic materials that might have seeded Earth with the starting blocks of life. We cannot find these materials today, because the organic compounds that first fell to Earth have long since disappeared – processed and endlessly recycled by geology and biology. On Bennu however, these mysterious compounds have been almost perfectly preserved. Bennu is a veritable museum in space that has been waiting 4.5 billion years to open its doors to Earth’s scientists. ...
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Re: OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

Postby Fred the Cat » Tue Sep 06, 2016 7:46 pm

Makes you think about contamination. We don't want to contaminate Saturn but we can bring back samples from an asteroid thought to potentially have organic matter. Where does one find out about the precautions to be taken?
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Re: OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

Postby Chris Peterson » Tue Sep 06, 2016 8:28 pm

Fred the Cat wrote:Makes you think about contamination. We don't want to contaminate Saturn but we can bring back samples from an asteroid thought to potentially have organic matter. Where does one find out about the precautions to be taken?

I don't think there's a lot of concern about contaminating an asteroid, other than making sure that we're not accidentally measuring something of our own.
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Re: OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

Postby Fred the Cat » Tue Sep 06, 2016 8:38 pm

Chris Peterson wrote:
Fred the Cat wrote:Makes you think about contamination. We don't want to contaminate Saturn but we can bring back samples from an asteroid thought to potentially have organic matter. Where does one find out about the precautions to be taken?

I don't think there's a lot of concern about contaminating an asteroid, other than making sure that we're not accidentally measuring something of our own.


I'm being naïve but I was worried about bringing something back from the asteroid to Earth. :ohno: I know. Read too many SF books :roll:
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Re: OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

Postby Chris Peterson » Tue Sep 06, 2016 8:45 pm

Fred the Cat wrote:
Chris Peterson wrote:
Fred the Cat wrote:Makes you think about contamination. We don't want to contaminate Saturn but we can bring back samples from an asteroid thought to potentially have organic matter. Where does one find out about the precautions to be taken?

I don't think there's a lot of concern about contaminating an asteroid, other than making sure that we're not accidentally measuring something of our own.


I'm being naïve but I was worried about bringing something back from the asteroid to Earth. :ohno: I know. Read too many SF books :roll:

Do not confuse "organic matter" with "living matter". The Earth is bombarded all the time with meteorites containing organic matter. It doesn't seem to be causing much problem.
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Re: OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

Postby Fred the Cat » Tue Sep 06, 2016 8:56 pm

Chris Peterson wrote:
Fred the Cat wrote:
Chris Peterson wrote:I don't think there's a lot of concern about contaminating an asteroid, other than making sure that we're not accidentally measuring something of our own.


I'm being naïve but I was worried about bringing something back from the asteroid to Earth. :ohno: I know. Read too many SF books

Do not confuse "organic matter" with "living matter". The Earth is bombarded all the time with meteorites containing organic matter. It doesn't seem to be causing much problem.


What? I wish you wouldn't have told me that! (I thought my wife was acting funny) :wink: Those space spores will come to haunt us.
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Re: OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

Postby BMAONE23 » Tue Sep 06, 2016 9:31 pm

You only need be concerned if you find a rather large POD under your bed before you go to sleep

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Re: OSIRIS-REx: Asteroid 1999 RQ36 (Bennu)

Postby Chris Peterson » Tue Sep 06, 2016 9:36 pm

BMAONE23 wrote:You only need be concerned if you find a rather large POD under your bed before you go to sleep

Or ant infested cherry blossoms by your bedside.
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Wired: Watch NASA Launch OSIRIS-REx

Postby Fred the Cat » Thu Sep 08, 2016 3:00 pm

Seems the OSIRIS-Rex mission has quite an agenda. Save the Earth. See the last paragraph. :ohno:

Hopefully in the "nick" of time. :ssmile:
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CfA: Asteroid Mission Will Carry Student X-Ray Experiment

Postby bystander » Thu Sep 08, 2016 3:50 pm

Asteroid Mission Will Carry Student X-Ray Experiment
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics | 2016 Sep 07

At 7:05 pm (EDT), Thursday, Sept. 8, NASA plans to launch a spacecraft to a near-Earth asteroid named Bennu. Among that spacecraft's five instruments is a student experiment that will use X-rays to help determine Bennu's surface composition.

The Regolith X-Ray Imaging Spectrometer, or REXIS, was developed by researchers and students at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), both in Cambridge, Mass. It is only the second student experiment to fly on a NASA interplanetary mission. ...

REXIS will help the mission team select the sample site by characterizing the asteroid"s surface. Bennu emits X-rays through a process known as fluorescence, in which X-rays from the Sun make atoms on the asteroid"s surface glow at specific energies, depending on which chemical elements are present. ...
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OSIRIS-REx: Bound for Bennu!

Postby bystander » Fri Sep 09, 2016 4:02 pm

Evening Launch Catapults OSIRIS-REx Toward Asteroid Encounter
NASA | Kennedy Space Center | 2016 Sep 08

Click to play embedded YouTube video.
Liftoff of OSIRIS-REx -- NASAKennedy

An Atlas V rocket traced a blazing arc into the Florida sky Thursday evening to send a small robotic explorer on its way to an asteroid on a mission that scientists anticipate will reveal answers to some of the basic questions about the solar system. ...

Lifting off at 7:05 p.m. from Space Launch Complex 41 at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the rocket's launch was timed to put the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, short for Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer, on an exact course to reach the asteroid Bennu in August 2018.

Burning a combination of refined kerosene called RP-1 and liquid oxygen and carrying a single solid-fueled booster, the first stage of the United Launch Alliance Atlas V 411 pushed the spacecraft through the dense lower layers of the atmosphere, then the Centaur upper stage took over, propelling OSIRIS-REx faster and higher. About 55 minutes after launch, the asteroid sampling spacecraft separated from the liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen fueled second stage rocket to fly free. ...

OSIRIS-REx Speeds Toward Asteroid Rendezvous
NASA | Goddard Space Flight Center | 2016 Sep 08

NASA's first asteroid sampling mission launched into space at 7:05 p.m. EDT Thursday from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, beginning a journey that could revolutionize our understanding of the early solar system. ...

The Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft is designed to rendezvous with, study, and return a sample of the asteroid Bennu to Earth. Asteroids like Bennu are remnants from the formation of our solar system more than 4.5 billion years ago. Scientists suspect that asteroids may have been a source of the water and organic molecules for the early Earth and other planetary bodies. An uncontaminated asteroid sample from a known source would enable precise analyses, providing results far beyond what can be achieved by spacecraft-based instruments or by studying meteorites.

OSIRIS-REx separated from its United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket at 8:04 p.m. The solar arrays deployed and are now powering the spacecraft. ...

Bound for Bennu! OSIRIS-REx Launch Was 'Perfect'
University of Arizona | 2016 Sep 08

The asteroid sample return mission lifted off from Florida before a UA crowd that can't wait to see what is discovered over the course of the next seven years.

An Atlas V rocket, a candle burning brightly in the evening sky trailed by a thick plume of smoke, successfully launched the latest chapter in the University of Arizona's rich history of planetary science Thursday from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

After 12 long years that included two failed proposals with NASA and the untimely death of the project's principal investigator, the spacecraft for the UA-led OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission has left the planet, much to the relief of the scientist who has been involved every step of the way. ...
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OSIRIS-REx Will Search for Rare Asteroids

Postby bystander » Fri Dec 23, 2016 5:29 pm

OSIRIS-REx Will Search for Rare Asteroids
NASA | GSFC | OSIRIS-REx | 2016 Dec 12

NASA’s first mission to return a sample of an asteroid to Earth will be multitasking during its two-year outbound cruise to the asteroid Bennu. On Feb. 9-20, the OSIRIS-REx (Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, and Security– Regolith Explorer) spacecraft will activate its onboard camera suite and commence a search for elusive “Trojan” asteroids.

Trojans are asteroids that are constant companions to planets in our solar system as they orbit the sun, remaining near a stable point 60 degrees in front of or behind the planet. Because they constantly lead or follow in the same orbit, they will never collide with their companion planet.
orbital paths and the sun on black

There are six planets in our solar system with known Trojan asteroids—Jupiter, Neptune, Mars, Venus, Uranus and, yes, even Earth. The Earth Trojan is elusive; to date, scientists have only discovered one Earth trojan asteroid -- 2010 TK7 -- found by NASA’s NEOWISE project in 2010. Yet there are more than 6,000 known Trojans that are co-orbiting the sun with the gas giant Jupiter.

Scientists predict that there should be more Trojans sharing Earth’s orbit, but these asteroids are difficult to detect from Earth because they appear close to the sun from Earth's point of view. In mid-February 2017, however, the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft will be positioned in an ideal spot to undertake a survey.

Over 12 days, the OSIRIS-REx Earth-Trojan asteroid search will employ the spacecraft’s MapCam imager to methodically scan the space where Earth Trojans are expected to exist. Many of these observations will closely resemble MapCam’s planned activities during its upcoming search for satellites of asteroid Bennu, so the Trojan asteroid search serves as an early rehearsal for the mission's primary science operations. ...

Searching for Trojan Asteroids, Earth's Unseen Companions
University of Arizona | 2016 Dec 12
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