July 11, 2019

The Falcon Eye 1 satellite blasting off atop a Vega rocket (Image courtesy Arianespace. All rights reserved)

A few hours ago a Vega rocket was launched from the Kourou base, in French Guiana, to deploy the United Arab Emirates’ Falcon Eye 1 satellite. About two minutes after the launch, immediately after what was supposed to be the second stage’s ignition there was an anomaly that caused the mission’s failure. This is the first failure for the Vega rocket after 14 successes.

Photo of asteroid Ryugu's soil taken by the ONC-W1 camera (Photo courtesy JAXA. All rights reserved)

A few hours ago the Japanese space probe Hayabusa 2 touched down on the soil of asteroid Ryugu to collect some subsurface samples that will be transported to Earth. This is the second attempt of the three possible at the start of the mission. After the first sample taken on February 22, 2019, the Japanese space agency JAXA decided to proceed with a second attempt in another area to then finish Ryugu’s study and return to Earth with the samples taken.