Dramatic samples show that the asteroid Bennu is not what scientists expected

NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission unleashed an unexpected explosion when it landed on asteroid Bennu in October 2020 to collect a precious sample for transport back to Earth.

Mission scientists describe the exciting sample retrieval process, which has led to surprising discoveries about the nature of the asteroid, in two new studies. And the results aren’t just intriguing: The researchers say the findings could have implications for a possible future skew mission, if it were 1,640 feet (500 metres) across. beno (One of the most dangerous near-Earth regions known asteroids) threatens to affect the planet.

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