Hayabusa2 Completes All Key Asteroid Observation Missions
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Tokyo, Oct. 29 (Jiji Press)--The Hayabusa2 unmanned spacecraft has completed all its major observation missions for the asteroid Ryugu, according to the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.
The Minerva-II 2 robotic explorer released on Oct. 3 from Hayabusa2 successfully orbited the asteroid and landed on it the following day, the agency known as JAXA said Monday.
After the mission, Hayabusa2 is set to leave Ryugu in November or December to return to Earth.
"We've succeeded in high-precision gravity measurements," JAXA researcher Kento Yoshikawa told a news conference, adding that Hayabusa2 researched the asteroid to the maximum extent possible.
JAXA originally planned to use the Minerva-II 2 explorer, developed by Tohoku University and others, to test its hopping rover on the asteroid surface and conduct observations.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]