The small capsule, only 40 centimeters in diameter, apart from the probe at a height of 220,000 kilometers, entered the Earth’s atmosphere at a height of 120 kilometers and opened a parachute at a height of ten kilometers, while the probe itself , called “Falcon” in Japanese, then was redirected on a new mission to another distant asteroid.
Extreme precision was required for the capsule lowering operation. JAXA has deployed several satellite vessels in the expected landing area to receive the signals it transmits and will use radar, drones and helicopters to search.
The Hayabusa2 mission was launched in December 2014, in 2018 the probe entered Ryugu’s asteroid orbit, landing on it a container with all-terrain vehicles and various robotic devices, but later with a peculiar charge casting the asteroid crater out for whole rock samples. Scientists hope that these samples, taken beneath the surface of the asteroid, will provide insight into the evolution of the solar system.
The name of the asteroid is Ryukū, which is in an ancient Japanese fairy tale at the bottom of a dragon castle ocean.
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