NASA’s scientists have been making an attempt to study an asteroid named Bennu since long with the help of its OSIRIS Probe. After the probe entered the orbit and settled there, it has detected some solid evidences of the existence of water over the asteroid in its very first observations. Scientists are hoping that the samples which the probe has collected will be interesting enough. NASA has launched the probe in order to carry out the study of the atmosphere and the structure of the asteroid 2 years ago. The mission aimed at reaching the asteroid’s atmosphere where it could study the internal structure of it.
As per the plans, the probe has now successfully entered the orbit of the asteroid and is now conducting several scans of the asteroid’s surface in order to understand the structure. The space agency has reported that the initial estimates about the rotation, orbit, and the size of the Bennu were exactly right. It said that the only unexpected thing that it encountered was the existence of a boulder at the South Pole of Bennu which is quite large. The observations which the scientists had made suggested that its height was somewhere around 33 feet.
But when the probe recorded the actual observations after entering the orbit of the asteroid, it was revealed that the Boulder had a massive height of 164 feet. The probe has spectrometers installed over it that can detect the characteristics of the molecules which are present over the surface of the asteroid. There are thermal emissions, infrared, and visible spectrometers installed that have collected the evidence of the existence of water in its liquid state in the earlier period of the asteroid’s life. The samples that were collected included the molecules consisting of hydrogen and oxygen atoms called as hydroxyls.
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