Hayabusa2 to start descent for new mission
NHK -- Apr 03
Japan's Hayabusa2 space probe is set to start descending toward an asteroid in about two days on a new mission to create an artificial crater on its surface.

Hayabusa2 has been observing the asteroid Ryugu, about 340 million kilometers from Earth.

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, or JAXA, says the probe will make the world's first attempt to create an artificial crater on an asteroid and study its interior.

Hayabusa2 is scheduled to start its descent from 20,000 meters above Ryugu at around 1 p.m. Thursday, Japan time.

The probe is to continue to move down slowly and, at 500 meters above the surface, release a device called an impactor at around 11 a.m. Friday.

The impactor is designed to explode 40 minutes later to fire a metal object into the asteroid's surface at a speed of 7,200 kilometers per hour.

Mission Manager Makoto Yoshikawa told reporters that his team will take on a new challenge that would have been inconceivable with Hayabusa2's predecessor. He said team members are tense, but will be united to successfully conduct the mission they've carefully prepared for.

The mission follows Hayabusa2's touchdown on the asteroid in February. JAXA believes the probe collected rock samples as planned.

News source: NHK
Sep 12
Even if you don’t work in software development, you’ll have to become familiar with file-sharing technology sooner or later. Web servers, applications, email attachments, and social media files – all data is governed by this technology, also known as Peer-to-Peer or P2P sharing. (newsonjapan.com)
Sep 07
Japanese scientists have identified a new species of dinosaur from a nearly complete skeleton that was the largest ever discovered in the country, measuring eight meters long. (Japan Times)
Sep 05
Large numbers of pearl oysters have been found dead in Ago Bay in central Japan. (NHK)
Sep 03
Tenga, makers of Japan’s most popular line of masturbatory aids, has a surprisingly lighthearted approach to its marketing…but then again, maybe it shouldn’t be so surprising that a company that’s all about self-pleasuring is also into having fun. (soranews24.com)
Aug 30
A research team from a Japanese university said Thursday it conducted the world's first transplant of corneal tissues using induced pluripotent stem cells, or iPS cells, in July. (Japan Today)
Aug 30
The combined number of people newly found to be infected with HIV and new AIDS patients in Japan fell for the second straight year in 2018, the health ministry said Thursday. (Japan Times)
Aug 26
A minor eruption has occurred at Mount Asama in central Japan. The mountain straddles Nagano and Gunma prefectures. (NHK)
Aug 23
Japan's space agency said Thursday its Hayabusa2 space probe returning to Earth late next year will drop its capsule containing asteroid samples in Australia's southern desert. (Kyodo)
Aug 16
People in Japan hoping to predict the next big earthquake should ignore mysterious deep-sea fish after experts said rare sightings of the creatures on the country's beaches did not, as some had believed, foretell a seismic calamity. (theguardian.com)
Aug 08
Takehiko Fujita wouldn’t be able to do his job selling eye drops and pain relievers without his pocket translator. (Japan Times)