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Life on the Asteroid Frontier

A blog by Dante Lauretta, Principal Investigator of NASA's OSIRIS-REx sample return mission, scheduled for launch in 2016.

OSIRIS-REx Passes EMI/EMC Testing

Dante Lauretta • March 03, 2016

The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft has completed the Electromagnetic Interference/Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMI/EMC) system level test.

How REXIS Made It on OSIRIS-REx

Dante Lauretta • January 23, 2016

The OSIRIS-REx instrument team has successfully installed the Regolith X-ray Imaging Spectrometer (REXIS) on the spacecraft. However, there is more to the story of how REXIS made it onto the spacecraft.

OSIRIS-REx Completes Mechanical Environmental Testing

Dante Lauretta • December 18, 2015 • 2

The OSIRIS-REx team successfully and safely completed sine vibration (sine vibe) testing on the spacecraft prior to the Thanksgiving holiday. The sine vibe tests are designed to verify the system performs as expected after being exposed to flight-like low frequency vibration input.

OSIRIS-REx Progressing Through Environmental Testing

Dante Lauretta • November 16, 2015 • 3

The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft continues to make steady progress toward launch in September 2016. Environmental testing is now underway to ensure the spacecraft is ready for the many conditions it will experience over its mission.

OSIRIS-REx Spacecraft Assembly Nearly Complete

Dante Lauretta • October 14, 2015

The OSIRIS-REx mission continues to make great progress and is in the Assembly, Test, and Launch Operations (ATLO) phase of the program. There's been many great accomplishments leading up to this point.

Xtronaut – A New Approach to Education and Public Outreach

Dante Lauretta • September 22, 2015

Historically, NASA missions set aside a portion of their budgets for education and public outreach, or EPO. However, the OSIRIS-REx EPO budget got deleted in 2013 as part of a broader federal policy change. Dante Lauretta decided to make a run at a private company to recover the lost OSIRIS-REx EPO program – and Xtronaut was born!

Populating the OSIRIS-REx Science Deck

Dante Lauretta • September 01, 2015 • 1

The assembly of the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft continues, with many elements integrated onto the spacecraft ahead of schedule. Last month both OTES and OVIRS were delivered to Lockheed Martin and installed on the science deck.

Development of the OSIRIS-REx Sampling System: TAGSAM and the SRC

Dante Lauretta • April 21, 2015

The OSIRIS-REx team has been busy assembling and testing the Touch-and-Go Sample Acquisition Mechanism (TAGSAM) and the Sample Return Capsule (SRC).

OSIRIS-REx Begins ATLO (Assembly, Test, and Launch Operations)

Dante Lauretta • April 02, 2015

The OSIRIS-REx mission passed another major milestone. We now have approval to build the spacecraft.

How Do We Know When We Have Collected a Sample of Bennu?

Kevin Walsh • March 17, 2015 • 1

A huge amount of effort goes into deciding where to try to collect a sample on Bennu. There are roughly nine months to survey, map and model the asteroid to help make this decision.

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