The Japanese probe has successfully sat on an asteroid


"Me especially Brazil image, problen s Blizko vgscan on the surface asteroid", said group MS the project "Hayabusa - 2" Makoto Yoshikawa. One of the rovers has specialized four cameras while the another has three cameras that will snap photos of the surface as well as collect details about it.

"We're glad that the Minerva-II 1 rovers took photos as we had expected", said Tetsuo Yoshimitsu, associate professor at JAXA.

Each weighed only about a kilogram, and after separating from the main spacecraft they approached the asteroid named Ryugu.

This computer generated image shows the Ryugu asteroid and the probe Hayabusa2.

The two small "rovers", which were despatched from the Hayabusa-2 spacecraft on Friday, will move around the 1km-wide space rock known as Ryugu.

The rovers are part of the MINERVA-II1 program, and are created to hop along the asteroid's surface, taking photographs and gathering data.

Hayabusa2 is scheduled to deploy a larger rover called MASCOT in October and another tiny hopper next year.

An artist's rendering of the MINERVA-II1 rovers on the surface of Ryugu.

The success marked the first time that rovers which can maneuver around the surface have been successfully placed on an asteroid, JAXA said.

JAXA, the Japanese space agency behind the mission, said it was "in awe" of the achievement.

MINERVA-II1 - TSE perch have in Moblin goslin of work, that VisAbility to the surface asteroid.

Hayabusa2's mission will be completed when it returns to earth in 2020 with the samples of rocks it has collected from Ryugu, which is thought to contain water and other materials that could possibly support life.

An artist's impression of the MINERVA-II1 landers deployed by Japan's Hayabusa2 spacecraft. The surface of Ryugu is in the lower right. Hayabusa returned to Earth in 2010.

Asteroids are believed to have rich information about the formation of the solar system billions of years ago.

Ryugu has very little gravity, so hopping must be done carefully.