This mosaic image of asteroid Bennu is composed of 12 PolyCam images collected Dec. 2, 2018, by the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft from a range of 15 miles (24 kilometers). The image was obtained at a 50- degree phase angle between the spacecraft, asteroid and the sun, and in it, Bennu spans approximately 1,500 pixels in the camera’s field of view. Date taken: Dec. 2, 2018. Instrument used: OCAMS (PolyCam).
Bennu is slightly wider than the Empire State Building is tall, shaped like a spinning top and it orbits the sun at distance between the orbits of Earth and Mars. The dark rocks and dust from Bennu were collected by NASA’s OSIRIS-Rex (Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification and Security-Regolith Explorer) spacecraft in 2020, following two years spent mapping the asteroid’s rocky exterior.