Nov 05, 2018
OSIRIS-REx has had another busy period of science and spacecraft operations. From Oct. 25 to Nov. 5, the OCAMS cameras made observations for the Daily Phase Function science campaign. The images from this campaign provide data to measure changes in light reflected from Bennu’s surface as the Sun illuminates the asteroid from different angles. These observations will provide information on Bennu’s albedo and the way light is reflected from the asteroid’s surface.
On Oct. 25, the five Frangibolts keeping the Touch-and-Go Sample Acquisition Mechanism (TAGSAM) arm against the spacecraft structure were successfully released. On Oct. 26, the Motor Articulation Control Module (MACM-2) card was powered on for the first time in flight. The three motors were effectively commanded to move the TAGSAM arm out of the launch container and into the parked position.
The Natural Satellite Search campaign also continued during this time using both the PolyCam and MapCam cameras of the OCAMS instrument, as well as the TAGCAMS navigation cameras as ride-alongs.
On Oct. 29, the spacecraft executed its third Asteroid Approach Maneuver (AAM-3), slowing the spacecraft by approximately 5.13 m/sec. This was also the mission’s first two-part burn maneuver, which accommodated constraints for the science instruments to not be pointed too closely to the Sun.
On Oct. 29, PolyCam also obtained images of Bennu to provide a “super-resolution” view of the asteroid that exceeded the best ground-based data collected.