Collecting Soil from Asteroids

Most people don’t know that we have sent out two missions to asteroids that will bring back soil samples! Now that’s no small feat — the asteroids are moving at a speed of 25 Km/s — their speed varies based on their distance from the sun. Meanwhile, the two spacecraft are entering the orbit of the asteroids, identifying sample sites, collecting soil samples, leaving the orbit, sending data back to earth and of course bringing back those soil samples.

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This week in science: Philae was found and OSIRIS-REx is travelling to Bennu!

(Published in The Nation Pakistan)

The landing of the orbiter and the search for it also gave scientists plenty of lessons for future missions. Now, on September 30, Rosetta will come very close to the comet, make some critical observations and then will descend on to the surface.

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Kepler 452b: Is there anybody out there?

(Published in The Nation Pakistan)

Ladies and gents, we may very well have found Earth’s cousin, 1,400 light years away from us! NASA scientist John Grunsfeld has called this Earth 2.0. If Kepler 452 b turns out to be a rocky planet (this is yet to be confirmed), this bodes well for further research on whether there is liquid water, an atmosphere and thus some form of life on it.

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