Sunday , January 24 2021

Images from Japanese space units show a rocky asteroid surface

The Japanese space agency said more than 200 photos taken by two small vehicles on an asteroid showed no smooth surface marks for the planned launch of a spacecraft early next year.

Japan's space exploration agency announced today that the two solar-powered batteries are becoming inactive and appear to be in shadow, but still respond to signals after three months beyond their projected life for several days.

The planes were dropped by the unmanned Hybus2 spacecraft on the Ryugu asteroid, about 280 million kilometers from Earth in September.

Many of the photographs show a rocky surface on the asteroid and present challenges to the planned touch of Hayabusa2.

JAXA says it is still planning to try the touch to collect samples.

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