JAXA’s Hayabusa 2 has captured the highest-resolution image of its target asteroid, 162173 Ryugu, yet, and it shows its surface in detail. This was made possible with the spacecraft’s Optical Navigation Camera as it was flying close to the asteroid to deploy the MINERVA-II1 rovers – ROVER-1A and 1B – that have already touched down on the asteroid and are snapping photos as we speak. Continue reading for another video and more information.
“The Hayabusa 2 mission is equipped with multiple scientific payloads, including tools that can collect samples for analysis. Scientists are hoping that the data they gather from the samples can help shed light on the origin of water and organic matter on Earth, as well as on the origin and evolution of the planets in our solar system. Hayabusa 2 will be leaving Ryugu with the samples in December 2019 and will be back on Earth by December 2020,” reports Engadget.