The Hayabusa-2 mission shares many common goals with OSIRIS-REx.

On October 3rd, 2014, the University of Arizona (UA) hosted representatives of the Hayabusa-2 asteroid sample return mission to explore opportunities for collaboration with the OSIRIS-REx team. Following an invitation from UA President Ann Weaver Hart, a team led by Dr. Saku Tsuneta, Director General of the Institute of Space and Astronautical Science (ISAS) of the […]

The 77th Annual Meeting of the Meteoritical Society was held in Casablanca this year.

Guest blogger: Professor Harold C. Connolly Jr. In the second week of September 2014, approximately 450 scientists from around the world gathered in Casablanca, Morocco to give professional talks and discuss all things meteorite—this was the 77th annual meeting of the international Meteoritical Society. The meeting is the major yearly gathering for scientists whose research […]

These figures show the slope distribution on the surface of Bennu. This information provides confidence that loose regolith can accumulate at the equator.

Today, we released the OSIRIS-REx Design Reference Asteroid (DRA) document to the public. The DRA is a compilation of all that is known about the OSIRIS-REx mission target, asteroid (101955) Bennu. We are making this document available as a service to future mission planners in the hope that it will inform their efforts. The DRA […]

The static test fixture is a series of vices, which push and pull on the structure to simulate the loads that the spacecraft will experience during launch.

The development of the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft continues to make great progress. When I last reported on the status of the vehicle, we were preparing to deliver the structure to Lockheed Martin’s Structures Test Lab to undergo static load testing. I am happy to report that the Static Test is complete! The last load case was […]

Two years to launch!

Today marks exactly two years to the opening of the OSIRIS-REx launch window on September 3, 2016. These milestones are always a good time to reflect on the progress to date and the work going forward. Josh Wood, our Flight System Engineer at Lockheed Martin sent out a great email to the team that provides […]

Figure 1: The REXIS spectrometer engineering model undergoing thermal testing.

Guest Bloggers: Mark Chodas (REXIS Student Team Members) and Richard P. Binzel (REXIS-PI) When the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft arrives at the target near-Earth asteroid Bennu, its first science task is to globally characterize the nature and composition of the asteroid surface. This characterization is all driven toward the selection among safe and enticing sampling sites for […]

The color of asteroids helps determine which family they belong to.

Asteroid Families Defined The asteroid community recently gathered in Helsinki, Finland for the 12th Asteroids, Comets, and Meteors Conference. As this meeting showed, one of the hottest topics in asteroid science is the study of asteroid families. The majority of asteroids orbit the Sun between Mars and Jupiter. As a century of research has shown, […]

ACM 2014 logo-square

  I just recently returned from a trip to Helsinki, Finland to attend the 12th Asteroids, Comets, and Meteors Conference. The ACM conference focuses on the research of small Solar System bodies and their role in understanding the formation and evolution of the Solar System. Topics range from the evolution of extrasolar planetary systems to […]

The Canadian Space Agency

Co-authored with Lori Stiles When we first started planning an asteroid sample-return mission for the NASA New Frontiers Program, we looked to the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) to provide the OLA instrument for topographic mapping and ranging to the asteroid. We also sought Co-Investigators from Canada to help us study the geology of our target […]

During Detailed Survey we generate the mineralogical and thermal maps of Bennu using OVIRS and OTES

This week the OSIRIS-REx team gathered at the Lockheed Martin facility in Denver to perform a “Design Reference Mission (DRM)” walkthrough. The DRM is basically the battle plan for OSIRIS-REx for accomplishing our goal of returning pristine samples from asteroid Bennu. In addition, the DRM lays out our basic strategy for dealing with any problems […]

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