Asteroid-bound Spacecraft Slingshots Past Earth

Asteroid-bound Spacecraft Slingshots Past Earth

Asteroid-bound Spacecraft Slingshots Past Earth

If you do get a good image, the OSIRIS-REx team would like to see it.

Launched just over a year ago while strapped to an Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida, OSIRIS-Rex has already unfolded its solar panels in the first step of its mission.

The Earth's gravity will fling the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, travelling at a staggering speed of 19,000 miles (30,758 km) per hour, upward by about six degrees so that its trajectory will match the tilt of the orbit of asteroid Bennu, nytimes.com reported on 21 September. To put that in perspective, the most the spacecraft could do on its own, using its entire load of propellant, would be about 4,250 miles per hour.

Graphic showing how fast OSIRIS-REx could traverse the US during the EGA.

OSIRIS-Rex, the asteroid-chasing spacecraft that launched from the Space Coast last year is ready to mark its first milestone Friday in a seven-year journey.

Blizzard mutes "toxic" Overwatch players on Xbox Live
Blizzard has confirmed details about the permanent ban system that is being put in place for Overwatch . Permanently banned accounts will never get a chance to play ranked " Overwatch " again.

The spacecraft is scheduled to arrive at its destination of Bennu in 2018, where it will collect and return samples that experts believe may hold the building blocks of life.

If you have a telescope with an aperture of 8 inches (20 centimeters) or larger, you may even be able to get a glimpse of the spacecraft, which will approach Earth at about 19,000 miles per hour (30,600 km/h) and make its closest pass over Antarctica.

NASA encouraged amateur astronomers with specialized gear to photograph OSIRIS-REx as it passed by and to share their photos with the space agency.

"The KinetX guys have this down, the deep space navigation part of it", he said. Once communication has returned, which is expected at approximately 1:40 p.m. EDT (17:40 GMT), the operations team will begin preparations for science observations of Earth and the Moon beginning at 4:52 p.m. EDT (20:52 GMT) in order to calibrate the instruments in anticipation of its arrival at the asteroid Bennu in late 2018.

"When we arrive at Bennu, it's one of the smallest objects that's ever been visited, and we're going into these really tight, small orbits around it where we'll be as close as 700 meters from the surface", he said. It also has the potential to threaten Earth, but not for another 160 years.

USA solar trade case moves on, panel finds harm to producers
Manufacturing jobs made up about 14 percent of the solar industry's workforce in 2016, according to The Solar Foundation. They say a flood of imports has forced Suniva into bankruptcy and led SolarWorld to lay off most of its workforce.

OSIRIS-REx is the third of NASA's New Frontiers missions, the first being New Horizons which flew by Pluto and its moons in 2015 and is now on its way to visit 2014 MU69 - a Kuiper Belt object - on January 1, 2019. OSIRIS-REx is scheduled to fly along side Bennu in 2018, collect surface material from the asteroid and carrying the first sample collected by the US back to Earth for a 2023 arrival.

A spaceship sucessfully zipped by Earth on Friday and used our planet's gravity to help it pick up speed on its way to explore an asteroid. More importantly, this could allow for the more accurate modeling of how the Yarkovsky effect will impact trajectories over time.

Appropriately enough, the spacecraft's name is a convoluted acronym standing for Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, and Security-Regolith Explorer.

Infographic showing how close OSIRIS-REx will come to Earth during Friday's flyby.

Baidu creates $1.5bn fund to invest in emerging autonomous driving projects
The company has even signed more than 50 cooperation agreements with Apollo partners on mass production or joint product development plans.

Related news