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- Arecibo Observatory Contributes to the Exploration of Black Holes Started by this Year’s Nobel Prize Winners in Physics19 Nov, 2020
- UCF Delivers Engineering Options for Arecibo Observatory (AO)16 Nov, 2020
- Management Update (October 12, 2020) by Director Eng. Francisco Cordova13 Oct, 2020
- Summer Student Assists in Development of Newest AO Facility01 Oct, 2020
- STAR Academy: Training the Next Generation of STEM Professionals 29 Sep, 2020
- Management Update (August 11, 2020) by Director Eng. Francisco Cordova29 Sep, 2020
- Management Update (August 28, 2020) by Director Eng. Francisco Cordova29 Sep, 2020
- Arecibo STAR Teachers29 Sep, 2020
- Hunting for the Mysterious Origins of Fast Radio Bursts28 Sep, 2020
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- How to Build an Asteroid11 Sep, 2020
- A Holistic Approach to Understanding Asteroids11 Sep, 2020
- Sharing the Connection: Arecibo’s Planetary Radar & NASA’s OSIRIS-REx Mission to Bennu10 Sep, 2020
- Analyzing Gravitational Fields Around Small Bodies in Support of Future Spacecraft Missions09 Sep, 2020
Byadmin10 September 2020 Planetary
Arecibo Radar images of the asteroid (101955) Bennu and the physical model of the asteroid developed from those images.
On September 2nd, Dr. Michael Nolan presented a Solar System Ambassadors and Museum Alliance Professional Development Training Webinar titled “Twenty Years of Bennu: From Arecibo to Orbit (and Home Again).”
The webinar highlighted the importance of the Arecibo Observatory for characterizing the near-Earth asteroid (101955) Bennu, the target of NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission. The spacecraft, currently in orbit around Bennu, is slated to pick up a sample of the asteroid next month and send the piece back to Earth by September 2023.
Dr. Nolan is the Science Team Chief of the OSIRIS-REx mission and a Research Professor at the University of Arizona’s Lunar and Planetary Laboratory. He worked at the Arecibo Observatory for twenty years, from 1995 - 2015, and served as the Head of Planetary Radar program and the Observatory Director.
“Whenever I give a talk about Bennu, I like to give my own personal perspective, which begins at Arecibo,” Dr. Nolan said.
The Arecibo Observatory hosts the most powerful planetary radar system in the world. Observations of Bennu were obtained in 1999, 2005, and 2011. From those, Dr. Nolan created the highly-accurate physical model of the asteroid that was necessary for planning the OSIRIS-REx mission.
“One of my specific goals arriving at Arecibo was to use radar to help plan space missions, and here we are!” - Dr. Michael Nolan, Science Team Chief of the OSIRIS-REx mission
Series of images of the asteroid (101955) Bennu taken from the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft.
In his webinar for the Solar System Ambassadors, Dr. Nolan shared updates from the OSIRIS-REx mission, including the incredible images that the spacecraft has sent back to Earth.
The Arecibo Planetary Radar Program is funded by NASA’s Near-Earth Object Observations Program. The Arecibo Observatory is operated by the University of Central Florida (UCF) in partnership with Universidad Ana G. Mendez - Universidad Metropolitana and Yang Enterprises Inc., under a cooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation (NSF).
Article written by Dr. Tracy Becker - AO Collaborator / SwRI Research Scientist
Head of Planetary Radar team
Keywords: arecibo, observatory, planetary,