US Stamps

Sept. 22 first-day ceremony details for OSIRIS-REx stamp

Aug 17, 2023, 2 PM
The Clark Planetarium in Salt Lake City will host the Sept. 22 first-day ceremony for the United States commemorative stamp celebrating the projected Sept. 24 return to Earth of the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft that collected samples from the asteroid Bennu.

By Charles Snee

The United States Postal Service has announced details regarding the Sept. 22 first-day ceremony for the nondenominated (66¢) forever stamp commemorating the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft and its planned return to Earth in late September with samples from the asteroid Bennu.

According to an Aug. 17 Postal Service press release, the stamp will be issued Friday, Sept. 22, at 11 a.m. local time (Mountain Daylight Time) at the Clark Planetarium, 110 S. 400 W., in Salt Lake City.

Robert Raines, vice president of business solutions for the USPS, will serve as the dedicating official.

Joining Raines on the stage will be Lori Glaze, planetary science division director for NASA; and Michael Puzio, an engineering student who gave Bennu its name in 2010 when he was 8 years old.

Collectors desiring to attend the ceremony, which is free and open to the public, are asked to register online with the USPS.

Each attendee may invite up to two additional guests, the Postal Service said.

“The OSIRIS-REx mission is currently ongoing,” wrote Charles J. Vukotich Jr. in his Exploring Astrophilately column in the July 24 issue of Linn’s Stamp News. “The mission’s name is an abbreviation for Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, Regolith Explorer.”

According to the Postal Service, OSIRIS-REx began its return to Earth more than two years ago, on May 10, 2021. The spacecraft was launched Sept. 8, 2016, from Cape Canaveral, Fla.

OSIRIS-REx’s “container of asteroid dust and rocks, enclosed in a special capsule, will parachute to the Utah desert on Sept. 24, 2023,” the USPS said.

The OSIRIS-REx commemorative forever stamp will be issued in panes of 20.

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