back to article We dunno what's more wild: This vid of Japan's probe bouncing off an asteroid to collect a sample – or that the rock was sun-burnt

Close-up footage of asteroid Ryugu, taken by the Hayabusa 2 spacecraft as it touched down to retrieve a sample, reveals the near-Earth object’s surface may have been torched by the Sun as its orbit changed over time. Ryugu, shaped like a spinning-top, circles our star once every 16 months and hangs out between Earth and Mars. …

  1. DerekCurrie

    It Survived The Encounter, Bringing Home the Baked-On

    That's what's wild. Well done!

  2. HildyJ Silver badge

    The Great Japanese Bake Off

    Here's wishing the samples a safe journey home (followed by the inevitable traveler's quarantine). I do wonder if other data has ruled out tholins as a possible cause of the reddening.

    Sapporos all around for the boffins.

    1. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: The Great Japanese Bake Off

      Tholins should be quite possible, it is close enough to the sun to get a decent tan so any organics that may be present would be well irradiated if they are on the surface.

      Hayabusa has so far pulled off an amazing feat.

  3. aregross

    A *small* bullet? That *small* bullet appeared to kick-off some good sized chunks, looking at the shadows.

    ...and Yes, that was Awesome!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Not so much Hayabusa! as Cowabunga! ?

      1. jake Silver badge

        It might be turtles all the way down.

    2. Julian Bradfield

      It was a 5g tantalum bullet fired at 300 m/s.

      1. phuzz Silver badge

        I hope it had "This is for the dinosaurs" written on the side.

  4. redpawn Silver badge

    Did I hear a bling sound?

    Did it get a power up from this landing, or does it still need to touch another asteroid first?

  5. Tom Paine

    That's no asteroid

    The shadow of the spacecraft looks strangely familiar...

    1. Scene it all

      Re: That's no asteroid

      It is an updated version of Hayabusa1, which performed a similar mission 15 years ago. Both are shaped like cubes with solar panels hanging off one side and various sensors and antennas in other places. Propoulsion is by ion engines, hence the large solar panels..

  6. rchrd


    "Eggheads"? I thought that term went out of style by 1970. Really?


    Almost as bad as "boffins".

    I think you're trying much to hard to be clever.

    How about "scientists", or "researchers". Or are you adhering to the style sheet of the Daily Mail?


    1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

      Re: Eggheads?

      I'd say "you must be new here", but it seems you've been around for a decade or so. "Boffin" and "egghead" are the highest accolades on this here site, and that's the way we like it.

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: Eggheads?

        Maybe not new, but definitely not paying attention.

        P'raps 'es been off searchin' fer a sparc?

  7. Rattlerjake


    If you really believe in this crap count yourself as one of the gullible sheeple!

    1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge


      Ummm - what?

    2. jake Silver badge


      Bad troll. No cookie.

      1. tfb Silver badge


        I find it's usually best to supply them with a cookie: they get upset otherwise. But, well, you can add things to the cookie dough. Rat poison works well on under-bridge-dwellers, I find.

        1. jake Silver badge


          "I find it's usually best to supply them with a cookie"

          If you feed the trolls you get to keep them.

  8. hoola Silver badge

    Cool Stuff

    Hats off to the team for achieving this. I just hope they can get the mission back safely.

  9. Uffish

    To quote WikipediA ...

    The total flight distance would be 5,240,000,000 km by the time the sample return capsule re-enters Earth's atmosphere. Not a bad range on one tank of Xenon.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm still amazed

    that we've got photos of the shadow side of Saturn. Why can we be so awesome and also so idiotic and destructive?

  11. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge

    Brilliant stuff!

    Might raise a glass of Nikka whisky to that, if I still have some

  12. Neil Barnes Silver badge

    All that effort the asteroid took

    to get into a stable orbit... and those fleshy meatsacks from the third world out have gone and given it a nudge!

    1. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

      Re: All that effort the asteroid took

      Yeah, my first thought was "So this will be how civilisation ends: when Ryugu's new orbit brings it to earth in x years time" Now would be a good time for someone to point out that it is so small, it would simply burn up in our atmosphere. However, the larger asteroid it will nudge is the one I'm worrying about.

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