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CORE

The Collection of Regolith Experiment (CORE) is a suborbital experiment that uses the hardware and technology previously designed and tested from earlier dusty regolith impact experiment (COLLIDE, Colwell and Taylor 1999; COLLIDE-2, Colwell 2003). These experiments have been modified to include a collector mechanism for acquiring samples of loose regolith. The experiment consists of a regolith reservoir and a prototype of a retrieval mechanism that penetrates the regolith and obtains a dust sample of about 10 grams during microgravity conditions. The regolith reservoir has a mechanical door in place to prevent particles from escaping due to accelerations experienced during launch and prior to free-fall. When activated, the tray door retracts to expose the regolith. Next, a launch mechanism forces a hollow tube to impact the regolith-filled tray. An inverted hollow hemi-spherical device inside the tube is then rotated 180° resulting in the containment of the regolith within the tube.