rocky surface half in shadow
Source: NASA/Goddard/University of Arizona
Published: February 28, 2019
Historical Date: February 20, 2019

This image shows a region near asteroid Bennu’s north pole on the terminator line between the asteroid’s day and night sides. The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft’s MapCam camera obtained the image on Feb. 20, 2019 while in orbit around the asteroid from a distance of 1.1 miles (1.8 km). At this distance, each pixel covers approximately 4.5 inches (12 cm) of Bennu’s surface. The largest boulder, located slightly left of the center, measures around 52 feet (16 meters) across, which, for scale, is the length of the trailer on a semi-truck.

During the mission’s orbital phase, OSIRIS-REx circles the asteroid near Bennu’s terminator line. While this positioning helps maintain the spacecraft in a stable orbit, the half-light/half-dark view of the asteroid creates challenging conditions for science imaging.

ENLARGE

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