Scientists from Japan said the “Hayabusa-2” space probe launched a capsule toward Earth, which is believed to contain samples of the “Ryugu” asteroid, according to Japan’s “NHK” Radio and Television Corporation on Saturday.
The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) project team said the launch took place at 2:30 pm on Saturday, Japan time.
The capsule is expected to enter Earth’s atmosphere just before 2:30 am tomorrow morning, Sunday, before landing in a desert in southern Australia.
Japanese space agency officials said the spacecraft is on its planned course to provide a capsule containing samples from a distant asteroid that could provide clues to the origin of the solar system and life on Earth.
The spacecraft left the Ryugu asteroid, about 300 million km (180 million miles) away a year ago.
In context, Japan Space Exploration Agency project manager Yuichi Tsuda said at a briefing before the critical separation of the capsule from the spacecraft, “We have trained ourselves and are now fully prepared. Good and there will be good weather in Australia. We are very excited. “
Scientists say they believe the samples, especially those taken under the surface of the asteroid, contain valuable data that is not affected by space radiation and other environmental factors. They are particularly interested in analyzing organic matter in samples.
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