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Full Version: OSIRIS-REX mission to 1999 RQ36
Unmanned > Other Missions > Cometary and Asteroid Missions
Saw this news article today:

And didn't see a thread on this mission. There was a passing reference or two to it, and a mention here:

Of this:

Which I guess I missed on vjkane's blog.
Well, we'll be hearing a lot more about this mission now.
Even though it was awe inspiring, I hope there is a lot less drama with this mission than there was with Hayabusa. laugh.gif
A new mission is announced the very same day Spirit officially ends her.
Makes me feel a bit less sad.
It was kind of...suggestive...that this was going to be the choice when the NF-4 mission options in the Decadal Survey included Osiris-Rex's two competitors but not Osiris itself.
The asteroid will be a getting a new name eventually, right? Any details on how/when they will choose one?
I think the planetary society will be involved.

Edit: Yes, they will be involved in the naming of the asteroid
I vote to name it "Spirit".
Greg Hullender
What's the propulsion system? Solar-Electric Ion? I hunted and hunted, but I couldn't find anything. Given the length of the trip, that seems like the best bet, but does anyone know for sure?

Look at the animation. It quite clearly has conventional chemical prop. The delta V requirements are not huge - this asteroid's orbit is really remarkably similar to the Earths. It's just a timing issue that defines the mission duration.
QUOTE (ElkGroveDan @ May 25 2011, 10:24 PM) *
I vote to name it "Spirit".

An asteroid has already been named after Spirit.
QUOTE (tedstryk @ May 25 2011, 07:32 PM) *
Edit: Yes, they will be involved in the naming of the asteroid
Yes, we were quite fortunate in the selection (or maybe I should say the public was fortunate smile.gif). We were involved in lots of the original NF proposals but I know we weren't on all of the final 3. On this one we had a deeper involvement than most. It'll be a while before the public involvement aspects of this mission take shape, but there should be a lot of fun stuff.
QUOTE (Hungry4info @ May 26 2011, 10:27 AM) *
An asteroid has already been named after Spirit.

"MER 2" then.
QUOTE (ElkGroveDan @ May 26 2011, 02:28 PM) *
"MER 2" then.
Or maybe Murray? wink.gif
the OSIRIS-REx mission now has a good, informative website
Holder of the Two Leashes
The Atlas 5 rocket, in a very unusual single strap-on configuration (which has successfully flown before), has been selected to be the launch vehicle for OSIRIS-REX.

Spaceflight Now article

Also, might mention some months old news that the asteroid has been named, as reported by the Planetary Society here:

Emily's blog
Now's the chance to send you name to Bennu and back:

Also, is there any reason the solar panels are tilted the way they are? Some of the concept art shows them more traditionally perpendicular to the sun, while others don't (when its shown doing the sampling). Is it in case Bennu looks like Itokawa, and there's a chance the panels could hit a boulder?
QUOTE (Explorer1 @ Jan 15 2014, 02:24 PM) *
Also, is there any reason the solar panels are tilted the way they are? .... Is it in case Bennu looks like Itokawa, and there's a chance the panels could hit a boulder?
My guess is that the blast of nitrogen gas that blows sample up and into the collectors may also blow material up and into the arrays.


Malin Space Science Systems (MSSS) has been selected by Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company to provide cameras for the OSIRIS-REx mission...
MSSS will provide the Touch-and-Go Camera System or TAGCAMS, which will consist of two redundant Navigation Cameras or "NavCams", and a single "StowCam". The NavCams will be used for navigation and control both by ground controllers and the spacecraft's onboard guidance system, while the StowCam will be used to verify proper storage of the asteroid sample in the spacecraft's Sample Return Capsule.

Those are going to be some beautiful images - congrats to the MSSS team on being selected!

QUOTE (mcaplinger @ May 8 2014, 06:08 PM) *

Since we're just contractors on this mission I can't say anything about it, but if you look at the image of the spacecraft forward deck in you can see the two Navcams and the Stowcam -- they look like little goblets with their baffles.
NASA Invites Public to Submit Messages for Asteroid Mission Time Capsule

Topics for submissions by the public should be about solar system exploration in 2014 and predictions for space exploration activities in 2023. The mission team will choose 50 tweets and 50 images to be placed in the capsule. Messages can be submitted Sept. 2 - 30.
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