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The Planetary Report • July/August 2010

Hayabusa Returns

On the Cover: Top: On June 13, 2010, Japan's Hayabusa spacecraft returned home from its seven-year journey to asteroid Itokawa. A team of scientists from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), NASA, and other organizations studied the spacecraft's fiery reentry using instruments on board NASA's DC-8 airborne laboratory. The small point of light at the lower right in this still video frame is the precious sample-return capsule. Bottom: Hayabusa team members transported the sample-return capsule to Australia's Woomera Test Range Instrumentation Building, where it was held overnight before being returned to Japan.
NASA/ARC-SST SETI Institute, Australian Science Media Center

Features

4 Passing the Torch: The Planetary Society's New Director: Meet Bill Nye

8 We Make it Happen! Looking for ET Using Laser Light: Bruce Betts explains how The Planetary Society is helping in the search for life in the universe. 

12 Hayabusa Returns! Looking Back on the Little Spacecraft that Could: Emily Lakdawalla reflects on Hayabusa upon its fiery return to Earth.

18 Solar Sail Update: IKAROS Deploys and LightSail Moves Forward Louis D. Friedman gives a status report on these two missions.

Departments

17 World Watch Orion and Hayabusa

20 Questions and Answers Nix and Hydra; LightSail; meteorites on Mars

22 Members' Dialogue The budget battle; SETI 

23 Society News Discovery Team Members; Travel with The Planetary Society

astronaut on Phobos
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