HOUSTON—The Hayabusa 2 asteroid sample return mission spacecraft entered the full-scale ion propulsion cruise phase of its return to Earth from Ryugu as planned late Dec. 2 U.S. time, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) said. The milestone, at 9:42 p.m. EST, or Dec. 3 at 11:42 a.m. Japan Standard Time, fell on the fifth anniversary of the mission’s launch to the carbon-rich, diamond-shaped kilometer-wide asteroid. A late 2020 return is anticipated, with the spacecraft ...

REGISTER FOR FREE ACCESS (Valid Email Required)

Register now for free access to "Hayabusa 2 Begins Ion Propulsion Phase Of Earth Return" and other premium content selected daily by our editors. 

 

Current magazine subscribers: digital access to articles associated with your subscription are now included at no added charge to you. Simply use your subscriber email to log in to your account (or contact us for assistance in updating your account).
 
Current Aviation Week Intelligence Network (AWIN) enterprise and individual members: please go to http://awin.aviationweek.com for access.

 

Already registered? here.