The country’s space probe, Hayabusa2, has successfully made the first man-made crater on an asteroid, said Japan’s space agency last Thursday.
Hayabusa2 had shot a projectile at the Ryugu asteroid around 340 million kilometers from Earth as part of the probe's mission to explore the origin of life and the evolution of the solar system.
"The asteroid's terrain has clearly been altered," said Yuichi Tsuda, an associate professor at the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.
Hayabusa2, which began its descent toward the asteroid Wednesday afternoon, captured images of its surface to determine the existence of the crater after it successfully shot a metal projectile at Ryugu on April 5 in an experiment deemed the first of its kind.
More details at The Mainichi.
(Image Credit: JAXA, Kobe University and other institutes)