Feeds

Vesta flashes charms to approaching Dawn

Impressive snap from NASA's asteroid voyeur

High performance access to file storage

NASA's Dawn spacecraft has returned an impressive snap of Vesta, as it prepares to enter orbit around the asteroid belt object.

Dawn's snap of Vesta. Pic: NASA

Snapped at an intimate 26,000 miles (41,000 kilometres), the image offers a tantalising glimpse of the second-largest object orbiting between Mars and Jupiter. Only Ceres surpasses Vesta's 530 kilometre (330 mile) diameter.

Dawn is due to go into orbit around the distant body later this evening at a distance of some 188 million kilometers (117 million miles) from Earth. Data gathered from observations of Vesta's basaltic rock surface will "help scientists understand the earliest chapter of our solar system's history", as NASA puts it.

The agency adds: "As the spacecraft gets closer, it will snap multi-angle images, allowing scientists to produce topographic maps. Dawn will later orbit at approximately 200 kilometres (120 miles) to perform other measurements and obtain closer shots of parts of the surface. Dawn will remain in orbit around Vesta for one year."

Once it's had its close encounter with Vesta, Dawn will head off for a 2015 meeting with Ceres, the dwarf planet which measures an impressive 975 by 909 kilometres (606 by 565 miles). ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Fancy joining Reg hack on quid-a-day challenge?
Recruiting now for charity starvation diet
Red-faced LOHAN team 'fesses up in blown SPEARS fuse fiasco
Standing in the corner, big pointy 'D' hats
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
Opportunity selfie: Martian winds have given the spunky ol' rover a spring cleaning
Power levels up 70 per cent as the rover keeps on truckin'
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
Elon Musk's LEAKY THRUSTER gas stalls Space Station supply run
Helium seeps from Falcon 9 first stage, delays new legs for NASA robonaut
Top Secret US payload launched into space successfully
Clandestine NRO spacecraft sets off on its unknown mission
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.