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Space & Astronomy

First close-up image of asteroid Vesta

July 19, 2011 | Comment icon 7 comments



Image Credit: NASA
NASA's Dawn spacecraft has taken a stunning close-up photograph of the asteroid it now orbits.
The goal of the mission is to assess the conditions and processes of the early solar system by investigating both Vesta and the dwarf planet Ceres, two protoplanets that have remained intact since their formation.
NASA's Dawn spacecraft obtained this image with its framing camera on July 17, 2011. It was taken from a distance of about 9,500 miles (15,000 kilometers) away from the protoplanet Vesta. Each pixel in the image corresponds to roughly 0. 88 miles (1. 4 kilometers).


Source: NASA | Comments (7)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by xXHellkittiesXx 11 years ago
I wish I had a proto-planet. I'd be famous for my zero-g parties and an interplanetary discotheque ^^
Comment icon #2 Posted by BrandOfAmber 11 years ago
For real. Ya know I once actually priced it out, at some point in the 90's. A vessel that would take me out to Ceres (my personal favorite proto-planet) and send a robotic coring probe to hollow the rock out. You could just inflate one of those NASA inflatable houses inside the moon, and you'd have pretty much the best Solar System vehicle imaginable. Attach some propulsion systems to that sucker (even an M2P2 device - Magnetic Field Propulsion Tech...), and you're set to go. Pricing the trip was pretty easy actually, until the problem of getting the assembled scout vessel into space without a... [More]
Comment icon #3 Posted by DONTEATUS 11 years ago
I wonder how much He-3 is on these rocks? Remember were running out of He 2
Comment icon #4 Posted by 27vet 11 years ago
I wonder how much He-3 is on these rocks? Remember were running out of He 2 We should find a way to bring the whole asteroid to earth, maybe a galactic tow truck.
Comment icon #5 Posted by Taut 11 years ago
That's kewl lookin'. So, NASA's budget is in the toilet, but they have the money to spend to go "look". And this benefits the space program how? Don't get me wrong I'm a huge proponent of space exploration, but I guess I missed the point on this one. someone enlighten me, please.
Comment icon #6 Posted by Device 11 years ago
Perhaps what NASA learns here too, may assist in thwarting a collision with one of these things. It's just a matter of time you see. It's just a matter of time.
Comment icon #7 Posted by Taut 11 years ago
Perhaps what NASA learns here too, may assist in thwarting a collision with one of these things. It's just a matter of time you see. It's just a matter of time. Yeah, I thought of that, and agree with you. Course they wouldn't want to "panic" the masses by explaining their whole agenda. God bless the bureaucracy In the immortal words of Ghandi "they look after us like well cared for children"


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