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Space & Astronomy

First close-up snaps of asteroid Bennu released

January 30, 2019 | Comment icon 3 comments



There is a 1 in 2,700 chance that Bennu will hit Earth between 2175 and 2199. Image Credit: NASA
NASA's OSIRIS-REx spacecraft has captured detailed images of the potentially hazardous asteroid.
Measuring approximately 500 meters in diameter, Bennu has long been of interest to scientists because of its potential to teach us much about the earliest days of the solar system.

Now OSIRIS-REx, which arrived in orbit around the space rock back in December, has released the most detailed photographs to date which were taken just one mile above the asteroid's surface.
Eventually, the probe aims to deploy a robotic arm and collection device to gather some of the asteroid's regolith and pack it up for launching back to Earth for further study.

Until then, it will continue to collect data in an effort to learn as much as possible about it.

High-resolution versions of the new images can be viewed - here.

Source: CNET.com | Comments (3)



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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Hammerclaw 3 years ago
Maybe I'm expecting too much too soon, but the resolution of the images on the site seems sub par for some reason.
Comment icon #2 Posted by Hankenhunter 3 years ago
Looks like a big ball of dirt that you could slowly push your way through. Is that a rock floating at 2:00 o'clock?
Comment icon #3 Posted by bison 3 years ago
I see that rock at 2 o'clock. It's apparently a high spot in the terrain, catching the sunlight, while its lower-lying surroundings remain dark. I magnified the right hand edge of the image, and viewed it at maximum brightness. A number of smaller detached bits of light become visible, also a couple of attached bits that reach out rightward into the darkness; one shaped like branches, another, an incomplete arc. All are raised bits of the terrain, it appears. Sights like these are often seen along the terminator on the Moon, the boundary between its lighted and dark portions, when viewed with ... [More]


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