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Still Waters

Asteroid Ryugu sample brought back to Earth gets close-up look

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Still Waters

In December 2020, Japan's Hayabusa2 spacecraft swung by Earth to drop off a cache of rock samples taken from a near-Earth asteroid called Ryugu. Asteroids like Ryugu are thought to represent the ancient building blocks of the solar system, and scientists have been eager to get a closer look at the returned samples.

Last week, the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency shipped one of the samples—a millimeter-sized fragment from the asteroid's surface—to the laboratory of Brown University planetary scientist Ralph Milliken for analysis. Milliken's lab is one of the first in the U.S. to examine a Ryugu sample so far.





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30 years ago this would have been top news and people excited everywhere. Today people are too busy being triggered to follow such excellent science. It's a shame.

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