OSIRIS-REx Launch – September 8, 2016
September 13, 2016
The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft lifted off from Florida’s Space Coast as planned on the evening of the 8th of September. The United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket took off and rose into a clear blue sky, leaving white trails behind it.
The spacecraft is now headed to the asteroid Bennu, where it will explore the unknown.
A group of researchers from the Florida Space Institute were mixed among the guests to the launch at Banana Creek Viewing point. As the rest of the OSIRIS-REx team they participated that evening in the anticipation of the event, they counted down to zero and then hold their breath while a bright orange-yellow flame pushed the rocket into the sky.
“This is an incredible experience, for years we have been working in the characterization of Bennu from Earth-based telescopes, the team has been working restlessly in the design of the mission, and now, it is out of their hands until it starts sending data back for their interpretation. This is the best expression of what Space exploration means.” said N. Pinilla-Alonso.
More information regarding this mission can be found at the following:
Written by Dr. Noemi Pinilla-Alonso
Pictures provided by Dr. Pinilla-Alonso, Dr. Esther Beltran and Dr. Gal Sarid