From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.
The Hayabusa-2 science team has begun the approach to Ryugu for the spacecraft’s second tough-and-go sample grab.
The link outlines the plan and timing of the operation. You can view real-time images taken by the probe’s navigation camera here. The actual touchdown will take place on July 11 (Japan time).
You can also view a set of stereoscopic images of Ryugu produced by Brian May, lead guitarist of Queen who clearly wants to return to his roots as a trained astrophysicist.
As they note at the first link:
The 2nd touchdown is the last big operation at Ryugu for the Hayabusa2 project. We will proceed with caution and the upmost care. Please wish us success…!
If successful, their next big operation will be getting those samples back to Earth.
Every July, to celebrate the anniversary of the start of Behind the Black in 2010, I hold a month-long fund-raising campaign to make it possible for me to continue my work here for another year.
This year's fund-raising drive however is more significant in that it is also the 10th anniversary of this website's founding. It is hard to believe, but I have been doing this for a full decade, during which I have written more than 22,000 posts, of which more than 1,000 were essays and almost 2,600 were evening pauses.
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