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Japanese Researchers Examine Asteroid Skin

Posted: August 26th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Applied Science, Astronomy, Cosmology, Michael Courtenay, Physics, Science, Technoid, Tecnoid | Tags: , , , , , , | Comments Off on Japanese Researchers Examine Asteroid Skin

Asteroid dust collected by a Japanese spacecraft – HAYABUSA – has given scientists their first look into the outer covering of an asteroid.

The asteroid explorer HAYABUSA – previously named Muses-C – was launched in 2003 by JAXA – Japanese Aerospace Agency – The craft succesfully rendezvoused with Asteroid 25143-Itokawa, located some 320 million km from Earth in 2005. Hayabusa successfully re-entered Earth’s atmosphere in June 2010. As Hayabusa burnt up she dropped her payload- a heat resistant capsule –  safely at Woomera in outback South Australia.

“Until now, asteroid exploration had been a one-way trip; however, the Hayabusa is a round-trip space mission. We’re now designing an improved next-generation space ship and are expecting the arrival of the Grand Navigation Era to the Solar System, such as a round trip to a main belt asteroid or to Venus, or a round trip via a deep space port” said project manager Junichiro Kawaguchi Read the full article »»»»