Hayabusa 2 brought back the first batch of asteroid surface materials as expected

Ryugu Samples

In December last year, the Japanese JAXA probe Hayabusa 2, which brought a sample of Ryugu asteroid back to Earth, had analyzed the results of its first batch of samples. On the one hand, it may be disappointing to say that these samples did not have any surprises, but on the other hand, this also means that scientists have an excellent grasp of the environment when the solar system was formed, and Ryugu’s samples It provides strong evidence.

The Ryugu (Dragon Palace) asteroid is a member of the so-called “C-type asteroid”. This type of asteroid contains a high content of carbon and is considered to be the outermost material from the beginning of the formation of the solar system. C-type asteroids are also the most common member of asteroids, accounting for about 75% of the total. Its structure is extremely loose, with an average density of only 1.7g/cm3, and its albedo (the proportion of objects reflecting solar radiation) is extremely low, about Between 0.03 and 0.09, making them appear extremely gray and black. But even so, Ryugu is also a very dark member of C-type asteroids, with an albedo of only 0.02.

For JAXA, this represents the final chapter of the extremely successful Hayabusa 2 mission. It is also a mission that finally obtained a sample of the asteroid after its predecessor Hayabusa probe failed to collect the Itokawa asteroid in 2010. . The material recovered by Hayabusa 2 will definitely be subject to further inspection, and the comparison between it and the material obtained by NASA’s OSIRIS-REx probe from the asteroid Bennu will also be a very interesting result. Bennu is a B-type asteroid, a sub-classification of C-type asteroids with particularly high water content, and is considered to be the pronucleus of a comet.


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