Japan’s Hayabusa2 spacecraft is doing some big things during its time at the asteroid known as Ryugu. JAXA, Japan’s space program, arrived at the space rock last year and, after much planning, fired a projectile into its surface late last month to collect some samples of it surface. Now, JAXA is planning for an even more daring maneuver.
Getting samples from Ryugu’s surface is great, but JAXA also wants to fetch some of the material from within the asteroid itself. Hayabusa2 isn’t equipped with a drill or digging tool to pierce the asteroid’s surface, but it did bring some explosives.