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The Hayabusa2 probe hopes to shed light on the origins of life on EarthThe Hayabusa2 probe hopes to shed light on the origins of life on Earth (AFP Photo/JAXA)

Tokyo (AFP) – A Japanese probe on Friday launched an explosive device at an asteroid, aiming to blast a crater in the surface and scoop up material that could shed light on how the solar system evolved.

The explosive mission is the riskiest yet attempted by the Japanese space agency’s Hayabusa2 probe that aims to reveal more about the origins of life on Earth.

Hayabusa2 successfully released as scheduled the so-called “small carry-on impactor” — a cone-shaped device capped with a copper bottom — as the probe hovered just 500 metres (1,650 feet) above the

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