Presented here are the observations and interpretations from a comprehensive analysis of 16 representative particles returned from the C-type asteroid Ryugu by the Hayabusa2 mission. On average Ryugu particles consist of 50% phyllosilicate matrix, 41% porosity and 9% minor phases, including organic matter. The abundances of 70 elements from the particles are in close agreement with those of CI chondrites. Bulk Ryugu particles show higher δ18O, Δ17O, and ε54Cr values than CI chondrites. As such, Ryugu sampled the most primitive and least-thermally processed protosolar nebula reservoirs. Such a finding is consistent with multi-scale H-C-N isotopic compositions that are compatible with an origin for Ryugu organic matter within both the protosolar nebula and the interstellar medium. The analytical data obtained here, suggests that complex soluble organic matter formed during aqueous alteration on the Ryugu progenitor planetesimal (several 10’s of km), <2.6 Myr after CAI formation. Subsequently, the Ryugu progenitor planetesimal was fragmented and evolved into the current asteroid Ryugu through sublimation.
Hayabusa2 arrived at the asteroid Ryugu in June 2018, and as of April 2019, the mission succeeded in conducting two rovers landing, one lander landing, one spacecraft touchdown/sample collection and one kinetic impact operation. This paper describes the initial nine months of the asteroid proximity operation activity of the Hayabusa2 mission, and gives an overview of the achievements thus far. Some important engineering and scientific activities conducted synchronously with spacecraft operations in order to complete all planned operations in time against unexpectedly harsh environment of Ryugu are also described.