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Fri Nov 9, 2018, 11:50 PM

As the Asteroid Turns: NASA Probe Snaps Video of Spinning Bennu

By Doris Elin Salazar, Space.com Contributor | November 9, 2018 02:00pm ET

The diamond-shaped asteroid Bennu has a boulder "witch mole" and a whole lot of other lumps and bumps, a gorgeous new video reveals.

The photos that make up the video were captured last Friday (Nov. 2) by NASA's OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, which has nearly caught Bennu after a two-year chase that began with the probe's September 2016 launch.

"We've now been able to see asteroid Bennu from all sides! The @OSIRISREx PolyCam camera captured an image of every 10 degrees of Bennu's rotation over a four-hour-and-11-minute period on Nov. 2. These images were taken at about 122 miles from the spacecraft," officials at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, said via Twitter on Tuesday (Nov. 6). [OSIRIS-REx: NASA's Asteroid Sample-Return Mission in Pictures]

And in another recent set of images from OSIRIS-REx, the 1,640-foot-wide (500 meters) Bennu comes into increasingly sharp focus as the spacecraft makes a gradual approach.

While folks on Earth were fine-tuning their Halloween costumes, the OSIRIS-REx PolyCam was using its long-range capabilities to take almost daily shots of Bennu as it emerged from the murky darkness of space. The sequence, published on Nov. 2 by NASA, includes a total of 16 images.


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Reply As the Asteroid Turns: NASA Probe Snaps Video of Spinning Bennu (Original post)
Judi Lynn Nov 9 OP
Cracklin Charlie Nov 10 #1

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat Nov 10, 2018, 12:01 AM

1. Super cool video!

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