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Questions tagged [sample-return]

Mission to some extraterrestrial object which results in return of materials to Earth for further examination.

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How did the Luna spacecraft collect samples of the moon and containerize them for return to Earth?

The Wikipedia page Sample-return mission and this answer list Luna 16, 20 and 24 missions as each bringing back of the order of 100 grams of lunar material to Earth, but their Wikipedia pages don't ...
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Does NASA still plan for the Mars Ascent Vehicle to burn wax from the surface to orbit?

The NASA news item From Pedicures to the Peregrine Rocket, Paraffin Wax Proves Its Worth says: The paraffin-based fuel also works under challenging environmental conditions, like the very low ...
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How to achieve escape velocity from Ceres?

If I am interested in a sample return mission to Ceres using a similar propulsion technology package to Dawn, what kinds of additional propulsion would be required to land and then return? ...
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Are rovers useful on low gravity, low atmosphere bodies?

Are rovers useful for exploring low atmosphere, low gravity objects? Are there more appropriate exploratory vehicles being proposed? If I am interested in taking geological samples from a region ...
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Is there really moon rock in this cathedral window? If so, how, and from where on the Moon?

This Tweet by NASA Space Flight Editor Ian Atkinson says: Some pictures from the Cathedral before the event starts, they have a table set up with artifacts from Apollo 8, including the flown ...
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Why does NASA use Nitrogen storage for lunar regolith?

I asked this question earlier about how moon dust was regulated and got an answer stating that: Eighty-three percent of that material remains unexamined in nitrogen storage at NASA's Johnson ...
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How much total lunar mass remains viable for analysis here on Earth?

I know that samples of lunar regolith were taken on many missions to and from the moon, but I also know that these rocks aren't common and are being used for analysis purposes. According to this NASA ...
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How did the Russians get moon rocks?

I've read somewhere that the Russians have moon rocks. How did they get them?
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Why would bringing samples from Mars back to Earth be a “civilization-level changing capability”?

The Space News article NASA continues Mars sample return mission studies Among those planned missions is Mars sample return, a multi-mission architecture that involves collecting samples of Martian ...
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What is the deepest we have penetrated a terrestrial body other than Earth?

Curiosity drills 6.4 cm (2.5 inch) holes on Mars. Comet harpoons have been proposed for future space probes. There are a number of ways in which we can penetrate the surface of terrestrial bodies, but ...
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Who was the first person to touch the moon rocks?

This might be a stupid question, but I can't find and don't know the answer: Everyone knows that Neil Armstrong and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin were the first men to land on/ walk on the moon. But were they ...
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Could there be any use with importing vacuum from space to Earth?

Space exploration pessimists say that there's nothing to import from space to Earth. So why not begin with doing exactly that?! :-) It's commonly claimed that the vacuum of space is harder (emptier) ...
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Red Dragon sample return

How will the Red Dragon take off from Mars and get back to earth? All the drawings I've seen just show the capsule on the surface and no rocket to take off again or power the return flight. Could ...
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If there is actual ice on the moon, why hasn't it sublimated?

The Ars Technica article NASA seeks industry help with lunar landings, potentially sample return discusses the potential value of ice on the moon as a source for fuel in future space missions. Ice ...
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Why NASA's sudden (apparently) interest in Wax hybrid engines? Which property is so attractive now?

I've just read the NASA news item From Pedicures to the Peregrine Rocket, Paraffin Wax Proves Its Worth. The project started when researchers at Stanford discovered that paraffin fuel burns three ...
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What forms of water ice have been observed and verified in the solar system?

The cool plot in this answer (from here) got me thinking about the more than sixteen distinct forms of ice, and how many of them have been actually seen to occur naturally in the solar system. There ...
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What are the differences in technology between OSIRIS-REx and Hayabusa missions? [closed]

Up to now two spacecraft have been launched for an asteroid sample return mission. The first one Hayabusa is a completed mission and now OSIRIS-REx is an ongoing mission. Hayabusa was launched in 2003,...
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How will Bennu's volatile compounds stay cool and unmodified by the heat of re-entry (OSIRIS-REx)?

Watching the video in this NYTimes article NASA Aims at an Asteroid Holding Clues to the Solar System’s Roots I realized for the first time how the samples actually make it back to Earth. The ...
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Which are the main challenges for sample return mission from an asteroid and a comet?

The first sample return mission from a comet has been achieved by NASA's Stardust spacecraft, and the first sample return mission from an asteroid has been achieved by JAXA's Hayabusa spacecraft. What ...
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Why haven't we returned samples from Mars?

So far, we have gotten rovers on Mars to take samples and analyze them and send data back to Earth. However, why haven't we gotten a rocket to land on Mars, collect a sample, and blast it off back to ...
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Why should the Mars 2020 rover drop drilled cores along its route to be picked up later?

The Mars 2020 rover will drill up real cores decimeter or so deep, in order for them to be returned to Earth by a follow up mission. I hear NASA people now seriously working on having that rover drop ...
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From which celestial bodies do we have samples?

Excluding our own, which bodies have we directly (or indirectly) gathered samples from? I'm aware of these: Moon: moon rocks from Apollo Mars: Martian meteorites found on Earth What else?
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How large a body could a probe with ion engines land on and launch from?

Researching small asteroids up close by use of robotic probes seems like an appealing near-future mission. One option is a sample return mission that goes to one large body, another is a mission where ...
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The practicalities of a rock sampling mission to Venus

The planet Venus has hostile conditions: a surface temperature of 462 °C, a corrosive atmosphere and a surface atmospheric pressure 92 times that of the Earth. During the Soviet era, the Russians ...
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Could a biohazard sample return capsule from Mars be safely hard landed on Earth?

There are some planetary protection concerns about backward contamination of Earth by returning samples from Mars, a mission which may well happen around the Earth-Mars opposition of 2025. One of the ...
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How are ultra-sensitive aerogel suspended samples secured for Earth reentry and touchdown?

For example, how were the Stardust particle collector samples, that were suspended in brittle and extremely low density (0.014 g/cm3) silica aerogel, secured prior to atmospheric reentry so they ...
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Sneakernet: Would data return together with sample return be useful?

Mars 2020 will drill and store several surface samples until a return-to-Earth vehicle arrives. The rover will then use its arm to move its sample box to onboard the return vehicle. Could the rover ...
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How could a minimal sample return only from the plumes of an ice moon, Ceres or Io be designed?

Would it be feasible and would it make sense to minimalistically design a sample-return-only mission (or class of missions) along these lines: Light weight plume collecting aerogel (like the Stardust ...
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Sample return mission to Mars

Are there any plans to launch a sample return mission to Mars? Is such mission possible, and what would be approximate max weight of returned sample? Is it possible to return sample to Earth orbit ...