Asteroid Sampler Placed Atop Atlas V for Launch

OSIRIS-REx being transported from the PHSF to the VIF at Pad 41, then lifted to the Atlas V vehicle in preparation for launch.

The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft was lifted into the Vertical Integration Facility at Space Launch Complex 41 and bolted into place on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V on Monday. The spacecraft, enclosed in a protective fairing, is to liftoff aboard the rocket on Sept. 8 to begin its mission to survey an asteroid called Bennu and then take a small sample from its surface and send that sample to Earth for analysis. Photo credit: NASA/Dimitri Gerondidakis