はやぶさ2

Case of a precision processing for Hayabusa2

There was a very good news in December 2020, Hayabusa2 from JAXA has returned to Earth!

TDC was involved in the production of Hayabusa2’s sample container.

It seems that the asteroid materials corrected in Hayabusa 1 was very small, maximum size of 70 μm and a minimum size of 20 μm.
If the cutting grain of the container is coarse, the precious sample will get damaged.
Therfore, the inner surface of the container for Hayabusa 2 wa polished to a glossy mirror surface.

It is also written in a technical magazine.
https://monoist.atmarkit.co.jp/mn/articles/1208/24/news006_2.html

Hayabusa2 has succeeded in collecting lots of larger samples by making many improvements such as the collection method and the structure of the container.
We are very proud that TDC’s precision polishing technology helped bringing back valuable substances without damaging them. …Maybe it contains an unknown substance that does not exist on Earth!

はやぶさ2

Ultra-precision processing on the sample container of Hayabusa2

はやぶさ2サンプルキャッチャーの超精密加工事例イメージ

The container was required to have ultimate smoothness without any scratches so that even small particles could be taken out.
The surface irregularities are 1 nm. As a team, we tried many different ways to polish every day and created several patterns of samples.
With this mission was taken up by various medias and it was a processing example that received a great response as a result.

A satellite probe mission to Mars is underway!

About Hayabusa2

“Hayabusa2” is a small spacecraft that performs asteroid sample return, which was born as a successor to the first “Hayabusa”.
In contrast to the first generation of the asteroid Itokawa (S type), the successor Hayabusa2 began a survey for the purpose of investigating the asteroid (C type) Ryugu (162173).
It is said that water and organic matter from the time of the birth of solar systems are left on Ryugu, and this survey conducted a historical survey that approaches the mysteries of the birth of life and the birth of the solar system.

In addition, an ultra-precision mirror-finished container is used for the sample collection work. The reason why the processing is necessary is to “exclude substances derived from the earth to the utmost limit” and “make it easy to find the particles in the capsule after returning”.

On December 6 2020, it returned safely to Earth and collected a sample derived from the asteroid Ryugu. The mission was a perfect success. Cutting machine and milling machine usually used for precision machining were used to open the sample container.
This method was chosen to remove the insulation that protects the container from the high heat of entry into the atmosphere without damaging the container.

The analysis of the sample contained in the container is under analysis. We hope there are great discoveries.

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