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  impactor for Deep Impact mission What is the sun made of? Are the Earth and planets made of the same materials? The Genesis mission sent a spacecraft to collect pieces of the sun, called solar wind, that may contain the answers. After its August 8, 2001 launch, the Genesis spacecraft journeyed a million miles sunward, unfolded its collectors and begun to "sunbathe" for more than two years, before returning to Earth in September 2004 with its unique cargo.
  impactor for Deep Impact mission The Deep Impact mission was the first experiment to probe beneath the surface of a comet, attempting to reveal never before seen materials that would provide clues to the internal composition and structure of a comet. A variety of instruments, both onboard the spacecraft and at ground-based and space-based observatories around the world, observed the impact with the comet and examined the resulting debris and interior material.

 

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