Research scientist and project instrument manager Rebecca Masterson uses liquid nitrogen to keep a staking material (Arathane) cold during REXIS instrument integration. (Robert Andreoli/NASA photo)
REXIS could do no harm to the host spacecraft upon integration and during flight. Since OSIRISREx is returning a sample of the Bennu regolith to Earth, REXIS had to be constructed, integrated, and tested under tightly controlled environmental conditions to ensure that the instrument does not threaten the pristine nature of the asteroid sample by contaminates brought from Earth. Along the way, the REXIS team encountered many of the pitfalls experienced by nearly all flight hardware teams including late design changes necessary for performance, parts lost to a shipping
Published on Nov 18, 2016
Annual magazine review of MIT Aeronautics and Astronautics Department research and educational initiatives.