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NASA's OSIRIX-Rex Blasts Off to Visit Asteroid

The US space agency, NASA, on 8 September 2016 launched OSIRIS-REx (Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer) spacecraft. 
•    The unmanned spacecraft, OSIRIS-REx, blasted off onboard a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
•    OSIRIS-REx is United States’ first mission to collect samples from an asteroid and return to Earth. 
•    The 800 million dollar mission will travel for two years on a journey to Bennu, a near-Earth asteroid about the size of a small mountain.
•    NASA feels that the asteroid may hold clues to the origin of the solar system and the source of water and organic molecules found on Earth.
•    Scientists at NASA said OSIRIS-REx's main goal is to gather dirt and debris at least 60 grams (2.1 ounces) from the surface of the asteroid and return it to Earth by 2023 for further study.

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