TAGSAM Sampler Head at Two Angles

These images show the OSIRIS-REx Touch-and-Go Sample Acquisition Mechanism (TAGSAM) sampling head extended from the spacecraft at the end of the TAGSAM arm. The spacecraft’s SamCam camera captured the images on Nov. 14, 2018 as part of a visual checkout of the TAGSAM system, which was developed by Lockheed Martin Space to acquire a sample of asteroid material in a low-gravity environment. The imaging was a rehearsal for a series of observations that will be taken at Bennu directly after sample collection.

In the image on the left, the TAGSAM head is tilted at five degrees on the arm and is brightly illuminated by the Sun. At this angle, the light saturates the lattice-like grille that surrounds the head and illuminates its interior, providing the lighting conditions needed to document the sample of Bennu once collected. In the image on the right, the TAGSAM head is aligned with the arm to clearly show the bottom surface of the head, including the metallic pads designed to capture additional dust and small particles from Bennu’s surface.

Date Taken: Nov. 14, 2018

Instrument Used: OCAMS (SamCam)

Credit: NASA/Goddard/University of Arizona


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