For reasons that remain a mystery even to me, I have always had a thing about the Rocks in the Sky. The real science of asteriods (and comets) is changing even as we speak in some very surprising and unexpected ways. The NASA adventure at Bennu a couple of years ago rocked many. Eheh.
Some of us find it super funny that the rock band Queen guitarist Brian May of all people meticulously created 3D images of the Bennu rubble pile to help the ORISIS-Rex mission leaders identify safe landing spots for the mission collector to gather the gravel. Say What?
The story of the Regolith Explorer on an asteroid beach - Now that's another tale about really stepping in it. Eheh. See my earlier post that it linked below.
The Space Gravel Returns From Bennu
The OSIRIS-REx sample return mission from the asteroid Bennu will occur on Sunday Sept 24, 2023 at 7:00AM PDST in the Utah desert. The ORIRIS-REX spacecraft performed a successful final course correction burn maneuver this last Sunday (Sept. 17, 2023).
The soon to be renamed NASA and JPL spacecraft is projected to release the sample return capsule about 63,000 miles from Earth and 4 hours and 13 minutes earlier.
ORISIS-REx Sample Return: Path to Touchdown
Image Credit: NASA and Lockheed Martin Space
The reentry maneuver will decelerate the special return capsule from 27,000 mph to 10 mph in a mere 13 minutes to land somewhere on a 36-mile-long target area in the Department of Defense's Utah Test and Training Range near Dugway, Utah. God Willing.
See my earlier At Bennu 200 Million Miles Away post.
You might ask...
How does this primitive space mining adventure relate to the recently released techno-thriller Weight of Space?
Weight of Space on Amazon
Weight of Space on Barnes & Noble
Weight of Space on Walmart
Weight of Space eBook on Amazon
Maybe its just me wondering, but I have to ask...
Beyond Artemis and the Moon
What Are They Thinking?