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Latest Asteroids Stories

Dawn Gets Extra Time To Explore Vesta
2012-04-19 03:30:40

NASA's Dawn mission has received official confirmation that 40 extra days have been added to its exploration of the giant asteroid Vesta, the second most massive object in the main asteroid belt. The mission extension allows Dawn to continue its scientific observations at Vesta until Aug. 26, while still arriving at the dwarf planet Ceres at the same originally scheduled target date in February 2015. "We are leveraging our smooth and successful operations at Vesta to provide for even more...

Engineers Working Towards Laser Deflection Of Asteroids
2012-03-28 10:26:01

Protecting the Earth from an extinction-threatening asteroid has in the past been left up to Hollywood, which has deployed a barrage of special effects box office blockbusters that have kept deadly space rocks from smashing our planet into oblivion. But now, Scottish engineers have come up with a plausible way of dealing with asteroids that doesn´t include Hollywood special effects. Engineers at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow are developing an innovative technique based on...

2012-03-06 11:16:38

Since last July, NASA's Dawn spacecraft has been orbiting the asteroid Vesta, and capturing images and other data that are providing surprising results to the delight and amazement of researchers. Dawn's mission is to help reveal the processes and conditions that marked the first few million years – the dawn – of the solar system; and the information the spacecraft has collected about Vesta is changing the way scientists think about the formation of our early universe. Born...

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2012-01-29 08:05:51

The bus-sized asteroid that flew past Earth on Friday may have garnered headlines, but it is far from alone, as experts claim that approximately 50 million objects pass by our planet each day. As previously reported here on redOrbit.com, Asteroid 2012 BX34, which was first detected on Wednesday, skimmed past Earth at a distance about one-fifth to one-sixth that of the Moon two days ago. While astronomers reportedly said that there was no cause for alarm, and that the 20- to 62-foot...

99138608
2012-01-27 14:07:20

An asteroid about the size of a bus flew past Earth on Friday at a distance within about 36,750 miles. Asteroid 2012 BX34 was first detected on Wednesday and skimmed by Earth at about a fifth of the distance of the Moon. Astronomers assured everyone on Earth that there was no cause for concern, and that if it would have entered the atmosphere, it would not have survived. Despite not being a big threat, the asteroid did make a record as one of the top 20 closest asteroids to approach...

595039main_pia14869-43_946-710
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 --...


Latest Asteroids Reference Libraries

6_79b1bf0245952aa2e5b479867b1c322b2
2004-10-19 04:45:41

Asteroid -- An asteroid, also called a minor planet or planetoid, is a member of a group of small, planet-like bodies that are part of our solar system. They are believed to be remnants of the interstellar clouds, nebula, that were not incorporated into planets during the formation of the solar system. The largest asteroid in the inner solar system is Ceres with a diameter of 1003 km. It also was the first to be discovered, by Giuseppe Piazzi on January 1, 1801. Nowadays, over 9000...

4_2263b8f4e602bddd69c225b3bc2c46aa2
2004-10-19 04:45:41

Asteroid Belt -- The Asteroid belt is a region of the solar system falling roughly between the planets Mars and Jupiter where the greatest concentration of asteroid orbits can be found. It is believed that, during the first million years of the solar system history, planets formed by accretion of planetesimals. Ripetute collisions led to the familiar rocky planets and to the gas giant's cores. However, in this zone of the system the strong gravity of Jupiter inhibited the final stages...

3_8254e27b9fccec1aaab3b9785e39d79f2
2004-10-19 04:45:40

Near-Earth Asteroid -- Near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) are asteroids whose orbit intersects Earth's orbit and which may therefore pose a collision danger, as well as being most easily accessible for spacecraft from Earth. In fact, some near-Earth asteroids can be reached with much less ΔV than the Moon. The most famous near-Earth asteroid is 433 Eros that was visited by NASA's Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous probe. A few hundred such near-Earth asteroids are known, ranging in size up...

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Word of the Day
grass-comber
  • A landsman who is making his first voyage at sea; a novice who enters naval service from rural life.
According to the OED, a grass-comber is also 'a sailor's term for one who has been a farm-labourer.'