A paper co-authored by four faculty members of the University of Aizu including three members of the Aizu Research Center for Space Informatics (ARC-Space)(※1) was published in the digital edition of Science(※2) on Friday, May 8, 2020.
The paper reported discoveries based on collected samples taken during a Hayabusa2's brief touchdown on asteroid Ryugu's surface. Based on images and video taken during the sampling process, authors investigated the surface colors and morphology on a small scale relating to the surface craters and stratigraphy constrains the evolution of Ryugu. The authors concluded that the asteroid experienced a prior period of strong solar heating caused by changes in its orbit.

<Paper title>Sample collection from asteroid 162173 Ryugu by Hayabusa2:implications for surface evolution 
-First author
MORODA Tomokatsu(The University of Tokyo, Associate Professor)(※3)
-UoA Coauthors (In order of author ranking)
HONDA Chikatoshi (Associate Professor)
HIRATA Naru (Senior Associate Professor)
KITAZATO Kohei (Associate Professor)
OHTAKE Makiko (Professor)