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A video tour of the Bennu asteroid



From NASA Goddard:

When NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft arrived in the asteroid Bennu in December 2018, close images confirmed what mission planners had predicted almost two decades before: Bennu was made of loose material weakly combined with gravity, and shaped like a rotating top. This basic validation, however, was accompanied by a major surprise. Scientists expect the surface of Bennu to be made of fine-grained material like a sandy beach, but instead be met by a rugged world full of rocks ̵

1; the size of cars, the size of houses, the size of the football fields. Now, thanks to laser altimetry data and high-resolution imagery from OSIRIS-REx, we can tour the land of Bennu.

This amazing video tour of the asteroid Bennu has garnered a lot of criticism YouTube for being more about the mythological origins of the names used for geologic formations than the science behind the features themselves. A person’s mileage is always different. I love to hear about the legends behind the names and it reminds me of the fact that even in the precise and rigorous field of science, a lot of thought, imagination, and humor go into naming things.




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