NASA’s first asteroid lands in Utah – level 2

29-09-2023 07:00

Last Sunday, something amazing happened in Utah, US. A capsule, which carried the biggest sample of soil ever taken from the surface of an asteroid, landed safely in the Utah desert.

A spaceship called OSIRIS-Rex released the capsule from around 107,000 kilometers away from Earth. The capsule then made a journey through the Earth’s sky. After this, the capsule landed safely in a place used by the US military for testing and training.

The landing was the result of a six-year effort by NASA and the University of Arizona working together. This was only the third time we got a piece of an asteroid on Earth, and this one was the largest. Japan’s space agency did similar missions in 2010 and 2020, but this one from NASA and the University of Arizona was much bigger.

Before the landing, there was a moment of worry because scientists weren’t sure if an earlier parachute worked correctly. Fortunately, the main parachute opened as planned, and the capsule landed smoothly.

Difficult words: capsule (a small case or container), release (to let go), effort (an activity to achieve something).

You can watch the original video in the Level 3 section.

What is the significance of OSIRIS-Rex's mission for the future of space exploration?


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