NASA has succeeded in collecting a sample from an asteroid for the first time, scooping up rocks and dust from asteroid Bennu using its OSIRIS-REx spacecraft.
The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft successfully touched down on asteroid Bennu on Tuesday, October 20, marking the first time that NASA has touched an asteroid in this manner. During the touchdown, the spacecraft fired a burst of nitrogen gas down toward the asteroid in order to throw up soil and small rocks which were to be collected by the probe’s Touch-And-Go Sample Acquisition Mechanism (TAGSAM) head. The aim was to collect at least 2 ounces (60 grams) to sample.
The NASA team had to wait a few days to learn if this sample collection had been successful. And now the news has come in, and it looks good — at least 2 ounces have been scooped up.
There’s a slight challenge though. When looking at images