NASA Sample Lands In Utah Desert
NASA’s first asteroid sample landed in the Utah desert this weekend after traveling billions of miles.
The NASA sample landing added to a weekend full of geekiness and fun. Clark Planetarium was at the Salt Palace Convention Center during FanX Salt Lake Comic Convention.
The sample collected from asteroid Bennu in October 2020 was collected by the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft.
The sample landed at the Department of Defense’s Utah Test and Training Range and was transported to a temporary clean room within an hour and a half after landing.
The temporary clean room was set up in a hanger on the training range and the sample was connected to a continuous flow of nitrogen.
The sample was connected to nitrogen because according to the NASA article on the Bennu sample, “nitrogen is a gas that doesn’t interact with most other chemicals and the continuous flow keeps out earthly contaminants to leave the sample pure for analysis.”
The Bennu sample was transported by aircraft to NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston Monday where pieces of Bennu will be distributed to scientists worldwide.
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