Hayabusa2 Capsule Shown to Public in Japan

Science Society Technology

Sagamihara, Kanagawa Pref., March 12 (Jiji Press)--A capsule that brought sand to Earth from asteroid Ryugu was put on display at a museum in Sagamihara, Kanagawa Prefecture, south of Tokyo, on Friday.

The capsule, brought back to Earth by Japan’s Hayabusa2 unmanned asteroid probe in December last year, can be seen at the Sagamihara City Museum adjacent to the Sagamihara Campus of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, or JAXA, which operated the Hayabusa2.

“It’s very moving to be able to show (the capsule) at the place where the Hayabusa2 was created,” Yuichi Tsuda, manager of JAXA’s Hayabusa2 project said at a ceremony. “I want people to feel the reality and significance that the capsule actually came back from space to Earth.”

On display are the main body of the capsule, called the instrument module, a heat shield, which protects the inside of the capsule from extreme heat when the capsule enters Earth’s atmosphere from space, a parachute used for landing and other items.

The heat shield is burned, showing the difficult environment the capsule faced when entering Earth’s atmosphere.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press