The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) has announced the release of a Forever stamp commemorating NASA’s seven-year OSIRIS-REx mission, which is scheduled to return a sample from the asteroid Bennu to Earth in September 2023. The stamp’s first-day-of-issue event is free to the public and will be celebrated on September 22 in Salt Lake City, UT.

This new 20-stamp pane honors the ambitious mission, marking the United States’ first pristine sample collection from an asteroid. The samples will provide scientists with vital insights into the formation of our solar system.

Details of the Stamp:

The artwork on the stamp illustrates the capsule containing the sample parachuting to the Utah Test and Training Range, a U.S. Department of Defense facility. A depiction of Bennu’s surface is showcased at the bottom of the pane’s selvage, with the outer space above colored deep blue and adorned with celestial bodies. A view of the asteroid can be seen in the upper right corner.

Alan Dingman illustrated the stamp, basing his artwork on images supplied by NASA. Antonio Alcalá, an art director for USPS, designed the stamp and pane.

Being issued as a Forever stamp will always equal the current First-Class Mail 1-ounce rate.

About the OSIRIS-REx Mission:

OSIRIS-REx left Earth aboard a rocket launched from Cape Canaveral, FL, on September 8, 2016. It orbited the sun for a year, then passed close to Earth for a gravity assist, reaching the asteroid’s vicinity in December 2018. Using special cameras and spectrometers, the spacecraft photographed and mapped Bennu’s surface to identify the best site for sample collection.

In October 2020, the spacecraft descended toward the surface without landing and extended a robotic arm to collect over 2 ounces of materials from Bennu’s surface. The spacecraft began its flight back to Earth on May 10, 2021, with the asteroid dust and rocks enclosed in a unique capsule to parachute to the Utah desert on September 24, 2023.

The Event:

The dedication ceremony for this stamp will take place at the Clark Planetarium, 110 S 400 W, Salt Lake City, UT 84101. Attendees include Robert Raines, Business Solutions vice president, USPS; Lori Glaze, Planetary Science Division director, NASA; and Michael Puzio, the Engineering student named the asteroid Bennu in 2013 at age 8.

Those interested in attending the ceremony are encouraged to RSVP at, and the stamp news is being shared on social media with the hashtag #OSIRISRExStamp.

The stamp’s unveiling is a tribute to scientific exploration and a recognition of the collaborative spirit between NASA and the USPS, reflecting a shared commitment to educational and inspirational projects.

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply