“Leaving on a jet plane, don’t know when I’ll be back again”; Not exactly, but I can say that my name is officially out of this world!
A United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V 411 rocket injected the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft into a hyperbolic trajectory away from Earth where it began a seven-year mission to return an asteroid sample.
My name, along with 439,999 others set off on that journey tonight. A journey to land on an asteroid named Bennu.
If you’re unfamiliar with Bennu, it is about 500 meters in diameter and has a 1 in 2500 chance of colliding with Earth in the next 200 years. Allow me to refer you to the experts for more information.
Liftoff took place at Space Launch Complex-41 (SLC-41) at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS), Florida. I wasn’t able to attend but I watched the launch tonight at 7:05 PM ET; couldn’t help but hold the phone to unsteadily record my TV screen.
(My apologies for the quality and background noise)
I’ll watch it often to remind myself that there are big things happening out there! I’m happy to be even a tiny part of something so huge.
It’s one of those events that could change the world. #ToBennuAndBack #2023