The magazine MAQ September 2018 MAQ Magazine November 2018 - Page 284

19 September 2018

The small exploration rovers, MINERVA-II1

The MINERVA-II (standing for the "MIOL Nano Experimental Robot Vehicle for Asteroid, the second generation") is a successor to the exploration rover, MINERVA, that was installed with the first Hayabusa mission to asteroid Itokawa.

Two containers for MINERVA-II1 and MINERVA-II2 are mounted on the bottom of the Hayabusa2 spacecraft. Two rovers are stored within the MINERVA-II1 container and one rover sits in the MINERVA-II2 container (first figure). This September, the two MINERVA-II1 rovers within the first container will be deployed, while the MINERVA-II2 deployment is scheduled for next year.

The bottom of the Hayabusa2 spacecraft. (Image credit: JAXA)