Final NASA statistics show that the spacecraft returned twice as much asteroid debris.

This image provided by NASA on January 22, 2024 shows a view of eight sample trays containing the final material from asteroid Bennu. NASA reported Thursday, February 15, that the Osiris-Rex spacecraft collected 121.6 grams (4.3 ounces) of dust and pebbles from asteroid Bennu. That’s about a cup full — the largest space mission ever from beyond the Moon. Credit: Erika Blumenfeld and Joseph Ebersold/NASA via AP

NASA has finally counted all the asteroid samples. Return by a spacecraft last fall—and that’s twice the debris return goal.

The Osiris-Rex spacecraft collected 121.6 grams (4.29 ounces) of dust and pebbles from asteroid Bennu, officials reported Thursday. It’s just over half a cup and is the largest spacecraft ever to fly past the moon.

NASA took longer than expected to open the sample container because of stuck fasteners.

The dark, carbon-rich samples—the first collected by NASA from an asteroid—are stored in a special curation lab at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.

Osiris-Rex returned samples last September, three years after collecting them from the asteroid. 1 billion dollar loss There would have been more, but the rocks jammed the lid of the container after being caught and some of the samples spilled out.

The spacecraft is now on its way to another space rock, but this will involve only one flyby with no sample stops.

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Reference: NASA final tally shows spacecraft returned double amount of asteroid debris (2024, February 16) February 17, 2024 https://phys.org/news/2024-02-nasa-tally-spacecraft Retrieved from -amount-asteroid.html

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