Japanese spacecraft to land in Australian outback

Apr 21, 2010
A rendering file photo of the Japanese space probe Hayabusa which collects surface samples of the asteroid Itokawa. The spacecraft which has journeyed to an asteroid is expected to return to Earth at a remote site in the Australian outback in June.

An Japanese spacecraft which has journeyed to an asteroid is expected to return to Earth at a remote site in the Australian outback in June, the government said Wednesday.

The unmanned Hayabusa craft, launched by the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency () in 2003, is expected to touch down near Woomera in South Australia, Defence Minister John Faulkner said.

"This has been an historic mission," Faulkner said of the Hayabusa, which reached the Itokawa asteroid in late 2005.

"It is the first time a spacecraft has made contact with an asteroid and returned to ."

Australian authorities will assist JAXA in recovering the Hayabusa and are involved in preparations for its final flight path, he said.

Explore further: NASA completes Rodent Research-1 operations on the International Space Station

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

AKARI's observations of asteroid Itokawa

Aug 23, 2007

The space-borne infrared observatory AKARI, observed asteroid Itokawa last month with its Infrared Camera. The data will be used to refine estimates of sizes of potentially hazardous asteroids in the future.

Australia Ready For Shenzhou Emergency

Oct 11, 2005

Australian authorities are ready to rescue China's next astronauts in the event that the Shenzhou 6 spacecraft makes an emergency landing in Australia.

Dawn Enters Asteroid Belt -- For Good

Nov 16, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- NASA's Dawn spacecraft re-entered our solar system's asteroid belt today, Nov. 13, and this time it will stay there.

Recommended for you

DNA survives critical entry into Earth's atmosphere

15 hours ago

The genetic material DNA can survive a flight through space and re-entry into the earth's atmosphere—and still pass on genetic information. A team of scientists from UZH obtained these astonishing results ...

Team develops cognitive test battery for spaceflight

16 hours ago

Space is one of the most demanding and unforgiving environments. Human exploration of space requires astronauts to maintain consistently high levels of cognitive performance to ensure mission safety and success, and prevent ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.