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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

NASA - Close-up View of 'Snowman' Craters

NASA - Close-up View of 'Snowman' Craters
This is a view from about 3,200 miles of the 3 craters on the Vesta asteroid, taken by NASA's Dawn spacecraft which is presently orbiting Vesta. Dawn is the first spacecraft to orbit an asteroid. The photo was taken July 24, 2011.

Click here--> NASA Image Of The Day Gallery to go there and/or download various sizes of this image. This image has been released by NASA to the public, and therefore is in the public domain. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA.

I think this is magnificent detail! And, isn't it so very cool to get closeup views of an asteroid? Studies of Vesta conducted by NASA via the Dawn spacecraft will undoubtedly help mankind understand the origin and early history of our solar system. It will also add to our knowledge of asteroids as it pertains to how we might deflect or avoid an asteroid aimed at Earth. We really don't need another extinction event like the one 65 million years ago that is widely believed to have been caused by an asteroid impact on our planet!

And for an extra treat, how about a full frame view of Vesta?
This image is from from the APOD (Astronomy Picture Of the Day) site. (Click the link to go there and get larger versions of this pic.) Image Credit: NASA , JPL-Caltech, UCLA, MPS, DLR, IDA

The set of 3 craters called the snowman craters mentioned previously can be seen to the left of center. Cool, eh?!

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