Videos: OSIRS-REx mission to the asteroid Bennu

On September 8th a ULA Atlas V rocket will launch the OSIRIS-REx (Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer)  from Cape Canaveral. The spacecraft’s mission is to visit the asteroid Bennu and bring back a small sample of it to earth. Analysis of the sample will provide hints about the conditions of the early solar system and provide clues on such as to how water and organic molecules came to the Earth. The mission will also add to the general knowledge about asteroids including possible resources of use in space and on earth.

On Wednesday, NASA held a panel briefing to  discuss the meeting with the press:

This video describes the Bennu asteroid:

This video shows the trajectory of OSIRIS-REx reaches Bennu and returns to earth, taking advantage of the fact that the asteroid’s orbit is near earth and crosses earth’s:

3 thoughts on “Videos: OSIRS-REx mission to the asteroid Bennu”

  1. How’s the analysis going to take place and is the data transmitted in real time? What instruments are involved in sample analysis? Also who built this spacecraft?

    1. As with other science missions, the data will be transmitted back to earth and received by NASA’s deep space network ( There may be some caching of data but generally it will be transmitted as it is obtained from the instruments.

      The mission scientists will begin to analyze the data as it arrives and this will go on for years with reports coming out periodically. Eventually, as with all NASA missions, the data will be made available to outside researchers.

      Lockheed-Martin built the spacecraft. As discussed in the briefing, several components are patterned after those in previous missions. For example, the Sample Return Capsule (SRC) is similar to that used on the Stardust mission ( that returned a sample of comet halo.

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