NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission is about to deliver first-ever pristine Asteroid sample to Earth today; watch the historic event live
Today, on September 24, NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission is on the verge of achieving a historic milestone in space exploration by delivering the first-ever pristine asteroid sample to Earth. Coverage of this extraordinary moment is being streamed live on NASA’s YouTube channel, starting at 10 a.m. EDT.
Thirteen minutes to go!
Watch live: NASA’s OSIRIS-REx asteroid samples returning to Earth
The OSIRIS-REx probe, part of the “Origins-Spectral Interpretation-Resource Identification-Security-Regolith Explorer” mission, successfully released a capsule containing precious samples from the near-Earth asteroid Bennu on Sunday at 6:42 a.m. EDT.
The capsule is expected to gently descend under parachutes at 10:55 a.m. EDT at the Utah Test and Training Range and Dugway Proving Grounds, southwest of Salt Lake City.
Scientists believe that the pristine Bennu sample, collected in October 2020, may unlock secrets about the early solar system and even shed light on the origins of life on Earth. Upon touchdown, the samples will be transported to NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, where they will be curated and distributed to scientists worldwide for analysis.
The OSIRIS-REx mission doesn’t end here; it’s now embarking on an extended mission, OSIRIS-APEX, set to encounter with the potentially hazardous asteroid Apophis in 2029, further expanding our understanding of these celestial bodies.