The seven-year epic with the delivery of extraterrestrial samples from outer space to our planet has ended.
A NASA probe called OSIRIS-REx, launched seven years ago, sent a capsule to Earth with samples of ancient soil from the asteroid Bennu. Scientists expect that its study can both provide answers to questions about the origin of life on our planet and mark the beginning of travel into deep space. Well, Bennu is also being closely monitored, as it could pose a potential threat to all humanity.
It is assumed that the asteroid contains samples of matter formed long before the appearance of the Earth and, probably, even before the formation of the Solar system. Analysis of Bennu’s soil should help scientists better understand the role of asteroids in delivering life-forming compounds to our planet.
Thanks to research carried out using earth and space telescopes, it was established that Bennu may be rich in organic molecules, which consist of chains of carbon linked to atoms of oxygen, hydrogen and other elements. This is the chemical recipe by which all living beings known to science are born. Scientists suggest that in the early stages of the Earth’s development, comets and asteroids crashed into it, delivering water and organic compounds. Analysis of samples from Bennu could help them prove this theory.
An asteroid sample collected by NASA has landed on Earth, giving scientists the opportunity to learn more about the origins of the solar system and capture a piece of massive space rock that could collide with our planet in the future.
The descent capsule was, of course, charred, but still delivered dangerous samples to the surface of the planet.
We can find out what is in these samples very soon. Moreover, NASA wants to share them with the whole world. But if there are extraterrestrial viruses in the samples of this meteorite substance, then there will be a completely unknown, an unpredictably fatal life form. Or not a virus, but some kind of cosmic mold, or rather its spores.
The scientific team collected samples from the landing site, including air, dust and dirt particles.
Apparently NASA is still afraid of space contamination at the landing site.
Now would be the time to introduce a worldwide quarantine against the United States in order to maximally protect the rest of the planet’s population from the possible threat of these samples.
Astromaterials Curator Frances McCubbin, and University of Arizona OSIRIS-REx Principal Investigator Dante Lauretta (from left) collected air and dirt particles and took images shortly after the capsule landed.
A special helicopter delivered the capsule with the sample to a laboratory room, not far from the landing site. To avoid flooding of samples from the asteroid, the room where the dissection was performed was purged with nitrogen to displace all earthly elements and microorganisms. The capsule itself was especially carefully purged.
The team will prepare a container of samples for transport on a C-17 aircraft to NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston.
Scientists plan to remove the lid of this capsule, which, by the way, is not very reliable in appearance, to see the sample for the first time on Tuesday. And here is the real danger, how spores or microbes of extraterrestrial origin will behave in the samples, of course, if they are there. What if there is oxygen and it causes a violent reproduction reaction in them and the world plunges into a zombie apocalypse in a matter of hours?
The recovery team will also evaluate all footage captured during the descent to determine whether the drogue parachute, which was used to initially stabilize the capsule, deployed in time. At the time of release, the team was unable to see visual evidence. The main parachute, responsible for slowing the capsule to a safe landing speed, was also deployed prematurely.
Scientists will analyze the rocks and soil over the next two years in a special clean room at the Johnson Space Center. The sample will also be separated and sent to laboratories around the world, including OSIRIS-REx mission partners at the Canadian Space Agency and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency. About 70% of the samples will remain intact during storage, so future generations with better technology will be able to learn even more than is possible now.
We wonder if a private person can buy a biological protection suit for personal use?
As we see from the screenshot of the video from the secret laboratory, all team members are wearing biological protection suits.
How long do you think it will be until a new pandemic breaks out of the NASA laboratory? And are we all prepared for it?