After a struggle of about three and a half years, Japanese Spacecraft finally succeeds in making its way to the asteroid Ryugu. Hayabusa-2 is the name of this Japanese spacecraft. It is being said that the spacecraft will release its landers on the space rock surface in the latter half of this year itself. It will be accompanying a precious sample from space. The asteroid sample will make its way to the terrestrial laboratory by the year 2020. In addition to this, it is currently engaged in sending images illustrating the closest-view of a mysterious asteroid to the planetary scientists.
JAXA in the last week released selective grainy pics of asteroid Ryugu which resembles a spinning top. JAXA stands for Japan’s Aerospace Exploration Agency. The grainy picture was snapped from a distance of about three hundred kilometres.
The picture of Ryugu released this week was snapped from a distance of about forty kilometres. This picture illustrates the asteroid Ryugu as a strewn surface with large boulders. Hayabusa-2 will march towards the asteroid Ryugu unless it is at a distance of about ten kilometres away from it. The JAXA expects this to occur today. Ryugu’s orbit intersects the orbits of Earth as well as Mars.
Yuichi Tsuda in a statement said, “From a distance, Ryugu initially appeared round, then gradually turned into a square before becoming a beautiful shape similar to fluorite, known as the ‘firefly stone’ in Japanese.” Yuichi Tsuda is the project manager at JAXA.
The Hayabusa-2 was launched in the year 2014. It is a near clone of Hayabusa. The Hayabusa has successfully explored the asteroid Itokawa in the year 2005. Hayabusa glorifies itself as the first mission to bring back a precious asteroid sample back to Earth.