Ryugu’s interaction with the sun changes what we know about asteroid history. In February and July of 2019, the Hayabusa2 spacecraft briefly touched down on the surface of near-Earth asteroid Ryugu. The readings it took with various instruments at those times have given researchers insight into the physical and chemical properties of the 1-kilometer-wide asteroid. These findings could help expla
The discovery is just the latest to show that meteorites are much more than space debris that falls out of the sky. Recent investigations have turned up meteorite-borne deliveries of possible extraterrestrial proteins, minerals and materials older than the Solar System itself. But we have never seen anything quite like this before.
The scientific interest in asteroids is largely due to their status as the remnant debris from the inner solar system formation process. Because some of these objects can collide with the Earth, asteroids are also important for having significantly modified the Earth’s biosphere in the past. They will continue to do so in the future. … Read more