A pond on Bennu


Please consider donating to Behind the Black, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar to the right or below. Your support will allow me to continue covering science and culture as I have for the past twenty years, independent and free from any outside influence.

Pond on Bennu
Click for full resolution.

The OSIRIS-REx science team has released new high resolution images of one particular area on Bennu’s northern hemisphere. The image on the right, cropped and reduced to post here, shows what they label a “pond of regolith,” seen as the relatively smooth area in the upper left.

This is not literally a pond, but instead is a low-lying spot where smaller particles have settled over time, producing a flattish area that looks, and in some ways, resembles a pond or puddle, only in this case the material isn’t water but fine-grained dust or pebbles.

On March 19 the science team will be presenting their initial results at a special session at the 50th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in Texas. That same day they will hold a press conference summarizing the most interesting aspects of those results. Stay tuned.

Share

2 comments

  • Lee S

    What a wonderful photo!! And what questions does it raise? I see rocks with sheer smooth faces, boulders of evidently different material mixed in… This is no accumulation of virgin material… It must have a deep and wide story to tell about the formation of our solar system!! Thanks Bob!

  • LJ Fillmon

    According to public resources, 101955 Bennu is about 1,600 feet in diameter?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *