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Latest 4 Vesta Stories

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2011-12-31 09:08:18

When NASA's Dawn spacecraft entered orbit around giant asteroid Vesta in July, scientists fully expected the probe to reveal some surprising sights. But no one expected a 13-mile high mountain, two and a half times higher than Mount Everest, to be one of them. The existence of this towering peak could solve a longstanding mystery: How did so many pieces of Vesta end up right here on our own planet? For many years, researchers have been collecting Vesta meteorites from "fall sites"...

Low Altitude Images Of Vesta Returned By Dawn Spacecraft
2011-12-22 04:31:12

NASA's Dawn spacecraft has sent back the first images of the giant asteroid Vesta from its low-altitude mapping orbit. The images, obtained by the framing camera, show the stippled and lumpy surface in detail never seen before, piquing the curiosity of scientists who are studying Vesta for clues about the solar system's early history. At this detailed resolution, the surface shows abundant small craters, and textures such as small grooves and lineaments that are reminiscent of the...

Image 1 - Dawn Now In Its Lowest Orbit Around Vesta
2011-12-13 04:25:18

NASA's Dawn spacecraft successfully maneuvered into its closest orbit around the giant asteroid Vesta on Monday, Dec. 12, beginning a new phase of science observations. The spacecraft is now circling Vesta at an altitude averaging about 130 miles (210 kilometers) in the phase of the mission known as low altitude mapping orbit. "Dawn has performed some complicated and beautiful choreography in order to reach this lowest orbit," said Marc Rayman, Dawn chief engineer and mission manager based...

Dawn Reveals Vesta's 'Color Palette'
2011-12-07 05:46:54

[ Watch the Video ] Vesta appears in a splendid rainbow-colored palette in new images obtained by NASA's Dawn spacecraft. The colors, assigned by scientists to show different rock or mineral types, reveal Vesta to be a world of many varied, well-separated layers and ingredients. Vesta is unique among asteroids visited by spacecraft to date in having such wide variation, supporting the notion that it is transitional between the terrestrial planets -- like Earth, Mercury, Mars and Venus --...

Dawn Provides New 3D Views Of Asteroid Vest
2011-12-02 10:31:47

[ Watch the Video ] Glide over the giant asteroid Vesta with NASA's Dawn spacecraft in a new 3-D video.  Dawn has been orbiting Vesta since July 15, obtaining high-resolution images of its bumpy, cratered surface and making other scientific measurements. The new video is best viewed with red-blue glasses, and incorporates images from Dawn's framing camera from July to August 2011. It was created by Dawn team member Ralf Jaumann of the German Aerospace Center (DLR). The images...

NASA's Dawn Science Team Presents Early Science Results
2011-10-13 10:19:27

Scientists with NASA's Dawn mission are sharing with other scientists and the public their early information about the southern hemisphere of the giant asteroid Vesta. The findings were presented today at the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America in Minneapolis, Minn. Dawn, which has been orbiting Vesta since mid-July, has found that the asteroid's southern hemisphere boasts one of the largest mountains in the solar system. Other findings show that Vesta's surface, viewed by...

Dawn Captures New View Of Vesta Mountain
2011-10-11 03:56:12

A new image from NASA's Dawn spacecraft shows a mountain three times as high as Mt. Everest, amidst the topography in the south polar region of the giant asteroid Vesta. The peak of Vesta's south pole mountain, seen in the center of the image, rises about 13 miles (22 kilometers) above the average height of the surrounding terrain. Another impressive structure is a large scarp, a cliff with a steep slope, on the right side of this image. The scarp bounds part of the south polar depression,...

Image 1 - Dawn Finds Vesta's Mountains, Rough Surface, And Old-young Dichotomy In Hemispheres
2011-10-03 11:44:30

NASA´s Dawn mission, which has been orbiting Vesta since mid-July, has revealed that the asteroid´s southern hemisphere boasts one of the largest mountains in the Solar System. Other results show that Vesta´s surface, viewed at different wavelengths, has striking diversity in its composition particularly around craters.  The surface appears to be much rougher than most asteroids in the main asteroid belt.  Preliminary results from crater age dates indicate that areas...

Dawn Begins New Vesta Mapping Orbit
2011-10-01 07:07:44

NASA's Dawn spacecraft has completed a gentle spiral into its new science orbit for an even closer view of the giant asteroid Vesta. Dawn began sending science data on Sept. 29 from this new orbit, known as the high altitude mapping orbit (HAMO). In this orbit, the average distance from the spacecraft to the Vesta surface is 420 miles (680 kilometers), which is four times closer than the previous survey orbit. The spacecraft will operate in the same basic manner as it did in the survey...

Image 1 - Dawn's Bounty Of Beauty From Vesta
2011-09-18 04:52:11

  [ Video 1 ] [ Video 2 ] A new video from NASA's Dawn spacecraft takes us on a flyover journey above the surface of the giant asteroid Vesta. The data obtained by Dawn's framing camera, used to produce the visualizations, will help scientists determine the processes that formed Vesta's striking features. It will also help Dawn mission fans all over the world visualize this mysterious world, which is the second most massive object in the main asteroid belt. You'll notice in...


Word of the Day
lunula
  • A small crescent-shaped structure or marking, especially the white area at the base of a fingernail that resembles a half-moon.
This word is a diminutive of the Latin 'luna,' moon.
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