Japan space rovers lowered to asteroid to collect data

A Japanese spacecraft is just hours away from a historic attempt to land two tiny hopping robots on the big asteroid Ryugu, and you can see near real-time photos of the spaceflight action.

Though the Hayabusa2 team calls them rovers, these little guys will hop rather than roll from place to place on Ryugu's surface, gathering a variety of data along the way.

Two of the the mission's four rovers will be deployed from the Hayabusa-2, touching down on the asteroid Friday. The spacecraft arrived near the asteroid, about 280 million kilometers (170 million miles) from Earth, in June.

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) said the two Minerva-II-1 rovers were lowered from the unmanned spacecraft Hayabusa2 to the asteroid Ryugu.

Hayabusa approached as close as 55 meters (180 feet) to the asteroid to lower the rovers, waited for a minute and then rose back to its waiting position about 20 kilometers (12 miles) above the surface. The robots move by hopping because extremely weak gravity makes rolling hard.

The asteroid is believed to contain organic substances and hydrated minerals, and the agency hopes the readings will help find out more about the origin and evolution of the solar system.

The spacecraft plans to release the Minerva-II 2 explorer, developed by institutes such as Tohoku University, next year.

The explorer was launched at the Tanegashima Space Centre in southern Japan in December 2014.

Related News:

  • "Modric for Ballon d'Or? I'd give it to Cristiano" - Casemiro

    Real Madrid star Luka Modric deserves to win the next Ballon d'Or ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and Mohamed Salah, according to a Los Blancos teammate.

    Scientists uncover 'strongest material in universe', and name it nuclear pasta

    Their huge gravity makes their outer layers freeze solid, making them similar to Earth with a thin crust enveloping a liquid core. In the computer simulation, the researchers assessed the power that must be expended to stretch the nuclear pasta .
    Cohen Boasts Of Aiding Mueller Investigation

    Cohen Boasts Of Aiding Mueller Investigation

    The report said the special counsel team has focused primarily on Trump's dealings with Russian Federation . Any interview is unlikely to take place before the November midterm elections, the source said.
  • No meeting between foreign ministers in New York, India tells Pakistan

    No meeting between foreign ministers in New York, India tells Pakistan

    Amid the continuing tension on the Line of Control, the death of an Indian border guard Wednesday in Kashmir increased the strain. Imran Khan, in his victory speech, had stressed on normal relations between the two nations.
    Samsung's New Galaxy Phone Has a Triple Camera Setup

    Samsung's New Galaxy Phone Has a Triple Camera Setup

    The Galaxy A7 comes in blue, black, gold and pink, and it will be available in select European and Asian markets this Fall. Samsung Malaysia is also offering a free Book Cover for every purchase from now until 31 October, while stocks last.
    Nick Kyrgios 'pep talk' umpire suspended?

    Nick Kyrgios 'pep talk' umpire suspended?

    When the trainer arrived and asked the Australian what he needed treatment for, Kyrgios replied, "I don't know". "I want to help you", Lahyani could be heard telling Kyrgios, who was a set and 3-0 down at the time .
  • Tour Championship LEADERBOARD: Tiger Woods leads, Rory McIlroy in the running

    Tour Championship LEADERBOARD: Tiger Woods leads, Rory McIlroy in the running

    Tiger Woods reacts as he makes an eagle putt on the last. "Hopefully I'll learn from that and not hit as many errant tee shots". On the front nine, he birdied the par-3 fifth and finished with three straight birdies. "It was a good day.
    Emery disappointed with Arsenal switching off in victory over Vorskla Poltava

    Emery disappointed with Arsenal switching off in victory over Vorskla Poltava

    Of course, it is very good to work with him and for my development it is very good to have the competition with him". Some players are better when they are playing regularly.
    Introducing Microsoft Dynamics 365 Remote Assist

    Introducing Microsoft Dynamics 365 Remote Assist

    Before the release of its first apps, Microsoft relied on third-party developers to build their own applications and workflows. For instance, sales executives can use Dynamics 365 AI for Sales to prioritize their time and focus on deals that matter most.
  • Walmart will use VR headsets to train all of its U.S.  employees

    Walmart will use VR headsets to train all of its U.S. employees

    Each Walmart associate will have access to the same training that managers and department managers have at the Academies. Walmart is using the Oculus Go, and every store the chain operates is now using the headsets.
    Nadal to skip ATP Asian swing due to knee injury

    Nadal to skip ATP Asian swing due to knee injury

    But of more importance is Nadal's long-term recovery from a problem that has seen him miss long periods throughout his career. Rafael Nadal of Spain faces Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina in a men's semi-final match on day twelve of the 2018 U.S.
    Real-life Planet Vulcan orbiting 'Star Trek' sun & could host life

    Real-life Planet Vulcan orbiting 'Star Trek' sun & could host life

    This longtime solar sustenance could reasonably give the "Vulcan" planet enough time to evolve complex life forms. As it turned out, the home planet of one of the main characters of Star trek exist in reality.

Most liked

Belgium and World Cup winners France make FIFA rankings history
While England, Portugal, Switzerland, Spain and Denmark are sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth and 10th respectively. Due to their disappointing defeat Ghana also move out of the top-five ranked teams on the continent.

Twitter reacts to Chelsea's 100% record this season after Europa League win
If I got a hat-trick last Saturday I'd want to be playing in the next game. It was hard for people to play against us this evening.

Trains cancelled across country as Storm Bronagh brings flood warnings
A yellow warning has been issued for wind covering the Harborough area from 6pm today (Thursday) to 9am tomorrow (Friday). Highways England is recommending drivers check the latest weather and road conditions before setting off.

Nick Cannon reacts to Kanye West's warning over Kim Kardashian
You're more than welcome. "It could be Mariah jokes, Kim jokes", said Cannon, referring to Kim and his ex-wife, Mariah Carey. Cannon welcomed Ye out of the " sunken place " and insisted that he's got love for him and his union with his ex-girlfriend.

Liverpool's Mohamed Salah 'fine' despite lack of goals - Jurgen Klopp
But, if Sturridge is able to remain fit, it can only be positive for the Reds, as his display against PSG proved his vitality. What did he get [in his first six games] last season?" He was also named in the 2017-18 PFA Team of the Year.

Mister Rogers gets animated with Google Doodle honor
Google collaborated with Fred Rogers Productions, The Fred Rogers Center, and BixPix Entertainment on the almost 2-minute video. It's a attractive day in the neighborhood to celebrate Fred Rogers, one of the most beloved figures in television history.

Christine and Frank Lampard welcome baby girl
The former footballer has two daughters from his previous relationship with model Elen Rivas, Luna, aged 13; and Isla, aged 11. The couple tied the knot in 2015 and this is their first child together. "Patricia Charlotte Lampard! We're so in love".

Housing market slows as London price fall weighs on market
The annual growth rate has slowed since mid-2016 and has remained under 5%, with the exception of October 2017, throughout 2017 and into 2018.

Alibaba founder: Trade war killed plan of 1M new US jobs
Beijing is reportedly looking at lowering import tariffs on global trading partners, which could include the U.S. The trade war has started to hit Chinese cities and provinces, especially those that depend on USA order books.

Martin Keown explains why Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah is playing within himself
The German also admitted that Salah's staggering figures in the last 12 months have put more pressure on his shoulders. Salah burst onto the scene on his return to English football as the Chelsea flop excelled for Liverpool .

Cody Wilson, the Arkansas-born plastic gun promoter, charged with sexual assault
Cody Wilson designed and printed his own 3D gun, which he dubbed "The Liberator" after a classic World War II firearm. Wilson, 30, allegedly met the girl, who is under 17, on the website SugarDaddyMeet.com, The New York Times reports .

Like humans, octopuses want more hugs when high on ecstasy
The physical contact, which is unusual, appeared to researchers as exploratory rather than aggressive in nature. Once the dose was dialed down, researchers placed the creatures in the special tank and just watched them go.

Patriots tight end limited in Patriots practice Thursday
Cornerback Cyrus Jones appeared for the second straight day after being signed off the Ravens' practice squad Wednesday. Flowers and Chung both are recovering from concussions suffered during Sunday's 31-20 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Tensions rise as European Union prepares for final Brexit stretch
The biggest single obstacle to a deal is the need to maintain an open Irish border. The judgment of British newspapers on Friday was brutal.

Million Chickens, 5,500 Hogs Killed in Florence's Flooding
According to the White House, nearly 20,000 federal employees were deployed to states affected by Hurricane Florence . Particularly concerning is the continued swelling of the 140-mile long Waccamaw River, which runs through both states.