NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft all set for asteroid mission-Prelims-2017

  • Bolted to the top of a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket, NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft will lift off on Thursday to study an asteroid and return to Earth seven years later with a sample for first-hand analysis.
  • The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft is scheduled to orbit, map and collect samples from near-Earth asteroid Bennu.
  • The mission will help scientists investigate how planets formed and how life began, as well as improve our understanding of asteroids that could impact Earth,
  • “The launch of OSIRIS-REx is the beginning of a seven-year journey to return pristine samples from asteroid Bennu.
  • After a careful survey of Bennu, OSIRIS-REx will collect between 60 to 2,000 grams of surface material with its robotic arm and return the sample to Earth.
  • OSIRIS-REx stands for Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer.