Credit: JAXA


The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has confirmed finding samples from asteroid Ryugu  inside the re-entry capsule of the Hayabusa2 asteroid explorer.

Credit: JAXA

The sample container was opened on December 14, with researchers finding black grains thought to be from Ryugu. This is outside the main chambers, and likely particles attached to the sample catcher entrance.

Hayabusa2’s re-entry capsule was collected in Woomera, Australia on December 6, then delivered to the JAXA Sagamihara Campus on December 8.

Re-entry capsule containing asteroid samples at Woomera, Australia landing site.

“We will continue to open the sample catcher in the sample container, and the curation and initial analysis team will take out the sample and analyze it,” a JAXA statement explains.


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