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NASA will give the general public a have a look at the asteroid pattern returned to Earth by the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft subsequent week. a It’s scheduled to be revealed at 11 a.m. ET on Wednesday, October 11. The capsule, which contained rocks and mud taken from the floor of the near-Earth asteroid Bennu, landed at a Division of Protection coaching website within the Utah desert on September 24. Since then, scientists have begun conducting their preliminary analyses.

OSIRIS-REx returned in 2020 and spent the subsequent yr and a half observing the asteroid from above, earlier than it started heading again in direction of Earth in Might 2021. After touchdown final month, the canister was dropped at Houston, Texas. It would open at NASA’s Johnson House Heart. OSIRIS-REx, then again, remains to be in house, and is now headed to an asteroid referred to as Apophis underneath the brand new mission identify, OSIRIS-APEX.

Asteroid Bennu is estimated to be greater than 4.5 billion years outdated, which implies the supplies present in it may maintain clues concerning the formation of the photo voltaic system and the way the fundamental parts of life arrived on Earth. To the delight of scientists, the mission was capable of seize extra materials than anybody anticipated. β€œThe perfect downside now we have is that there’s a lot of fabric, and amassing it’s taking longer than we anticipated,” he mentioned. , deputy commander of NASA’s OSIRIS-REx processing operation. As they go reside, we’ll quickly study extra about what they’ve found with this materials to this point.

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