Japan is preparing to collect stardust


DECRYPTION – The Hayabusa-2 probe is to bring back to Earth this Saturday small grains taken from an asteroid.

It’s a pinch of stardust, nothing more, nothing less, that Japan hopes to find on Saturday in the “Woomera Prohibited Zone”, a desert military ground in southern Australia. Between 6 p.m. and 7:10 p.m. (French time), a very small capsule 40 cm in diameter must indeed make its return to Earth after having traveled more than 5 billion kilometers in the vacuum of space. It will make a high-risk entry into the Earth’s atmosphere at more than 40,000 km / h. At this speed, the car should quickly turn into a fireball for a few moments, though well protected by a thick heat shield. Then, when the capsule has been sufficiently slowed down by the friction of the air, it can deploy its parachute (at an altitude of about 10 km) to come to rest on the ground gently.

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Japanese recovery teams are deployed

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