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Topic: Asteroid

NASA’s set to launch it’s latest Smartphone Satellite

 

NASA

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – NASA’s preparing to send its fifth in a series of smartphone-controlled small spacecraft into orbit. PhoneSat 2.5 will ride into space as part of the SpaceX-3 commercial cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station.

SpaceX-3 is scheduled to lift off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 4:41am EDT Sunday, March 16th.

NASA's PhoneSat 2.5

NASA’s PhoneSat 2.5

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NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope catches images of Asteroid breaking up

 

Written by Tony Phillips

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope has recorded the never-before-seen break-up of an asteroid into as many as 10 smaller pieces. Fragile comets, comprised of ice and dust, have been seen falling apart as they approach the sun, but nothing like this has ever before been observed in the asteroid belt.

“This is a rock, and seeing it fall apart before our eyes is pretty amazing,” said David Jewitt of the University of California at Los Angeles, who led the astronomical forensics investigation.

This series of Hubble Space Telescope images reveals the breakup of an asteroid over a period of several months starting in late 2013. The largest fragments are up to 180 meters (200 yards) in radius.

This series of Hubble Space Telescope images reveals the breakup of an asteroid over a period of several months starting in late 2013. The largest fragments are up to 180 meters (200 yards) in radius.

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NASA reports Asteroid will pass by Earth safely Wednesday

 

Written Guy Webster
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – As happens about 20 times a year with current detection capabilities, a known asteroid will safely pass Earth Wednesday closer than the distance from Earth to the moon.

This asteroid, 2014 DX110, is estimated to be about 100 feet (30 meters) across. Its closest approach to Earth will be at about 217,000 miles (about 350,000 kilometers) from Earth at about 1:00pm PST (4:00pm EST) on March 5th. The average distance between Earth and its moon is about 239,000 miles (385,000 kilometers).

This image shows the relative locations of asteroid 2014 DX110 and Earth on March 4, 2014. The asteroid will make its closest approach to Earth on March 5 at about 1 p.m. PST (4 p.m. EST). (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

This image shows the relative locations of asteroid 2014 DX110 and Earth on March 4, 2014. The asteroid will make its closest approach to Earth on March 5 at about 1 p.m. PST (4 p.m. EST). (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA’s Deep Space Network releases images of Near Earth Asteroid 2006 DP14

 

Written by DC Agle
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – A collage of radar images of near-Earth asteroid 2006 DP14 was generated by NASA scientists using the 230-foot (70-meter) Deep Space Network antenna at Goldstone, CA, on the night of February 11th, 2014.

Delay-Doppler radar imaging revealed that the asteroid is about 1,300 feet (400 meters) long, 660 feet (200 meters) wide, and shaped somewhat like a big peanut. The asteroid’s period of rotation is about six hours.

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NASA reports very small Asteroid discovered with potential to impact Earth

 

Written by DC Agle
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – Early Wednesday morning (January 1st, 2014), while New Year’s 2014 celebrations were still underway in the United States, the Catalina Sky Survey near Tucson, AZ, collected a single track of observations with an immediate follow-up on what was possibly a very small asteroid — 7 to 10 feet (2 to 3 meters) in size — on a potential impact trajectory with Earth.

Designated 2014 AA, which would make it the first asteroid discovery of 2014, the track of observations on the object allowed only an uncertain orbit to be calculated.

This animated GIF shows Asteroid 2014 AA, discovered by the NASA-sponsored Catalina Sky Survey on Jan. 1, 2014, as it moved across the sky. (CSS/LPL/UA)

This animated GIF shows Asteroid 2014 AA, discovered by the NASA-sponsored Catalina Sky Survey on Jan. 1, 2014, as it moved across the sky. (CSS/LPL/UA)

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NASA Astronauts go through Simulated Launch of the New Orion Spacecraft

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – NASA astronauts recently experienced what it will be like to launch into space aboard the new Orion spacecraft during the first ascent simulations since the space shuttles and their simulators were retired.

Ascent simulations are precise rehearsals of the steps a spacecraft’s crew will be responsible for – including things that could go wrong – during their climb into space.

Astronauts Rick Linnehan and Mike Foreman try out a prototype display and control system inside an Orion spacecraft mockup at Johnson Space Center during the first ascent and abort simulations for the program. (NASA)

Astronauts Rick Linnehan and Mike Foreman try out a prototype display and control system inside an Orion spacecraft mockup at Johnson Space Center during the first ascent and abort simulations for the program. (NASA)

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NASA’s Dawn spacecraft images reveal stunning details stunning details of the surface of Asteroid Vesta

 

Written by Jia-Rui Cook
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – Some beauty is revealed only at a second glance. When viewed with the human eye, the giant asteroid Vesta, which was the object of scrutiny by the Dawn spacecraft from 2011 to 2012, is quite unspectacular color-wise. Vesta looks grayish, pitted by a variety of large and small craters.

But scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany, have re-analyzed the images of this giant asteroid obtained by Dawn’s framing camera.

This colorful composite image from NASA's Dawn mission shows the flow of material inside and outside a crater called Aelia on the giant asteroid Vesta. The area is around 14 degrees south latitude. The images that went into this composite were obtained by Dawn's framing camera from September to October 2011. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLAMPS/DLR/IDA)

This colorful composite image from NASA’s Dawn mission shows the flow of material inside and outside a crater called Aelia on the giant asteroid Vesta. The area is around 14 degrees south latitude. The images that went into this composite were obtained by Dawn’s framing camera from September to October 2011. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLAMPS/DLR/IDA)

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NASA’s Galileo spacecraft discovers Clay Like Minerals on Jupiter’s Moon Europa

 

Written by Jia-Rui C. Cook
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – A new analysis of data from NASA’s Galileo mission has revealed clay-type minerals at the surface of Jupiter’s icy moon Europa that appear to have been delivered by a spectacular collision with an asteroid or comet.

This is the first time such minerals have been detected on Europa’s surface. The types of space rocks that deliver such minerals typically also often carry organic materials.

This image, using data from NASA's Galileo mission, shows the first detection of clay-like minerals on the surface of Jupiter's moon Europa. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/SETI)

This image, using data from NASA’s Galileo mission, shows the first detection of clay-like minerals on the surface of Jupiter’s moon Europa. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/SETI)

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NASA’s STEREO probes discovers Rock Comet’s Tail

 

Written by Dr. Tony Phillips
Science at NASA

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – Astronomers have long been puzzled by a certain meteor shower.

Every year in mid-December the sky fills with flashes of light shooting out of the constellation Gemini. The Geminids are fast, bright, and reliable. They never fail to show up and many observers count them as the finest meteors of the year.

But where do they come from? That is the puzzle.

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NASA’s Dawn Spacecraft images sheds light on the forming of the giant asteroid Vesta

 

Written by Jia-Rui Cook
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – Just when scientists thought they had a tidy theory for how the giant asteroid Vesta formed, a new paper from NASA’s Dawn mission suggests the history is more complicated.

If Vesta’s formation had followed the script for the formation of rocky planets like our own, heat from the interior would have created distinct, separated layers of rock (generally, a core, mantle and crust). In that story, the mineral olivine should concentrate in the mantle.

This image shows infrared views of two craters at the giant asteroid Vesta that NASA's Dawn mission has found to sport the mineral olivine. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/ASI/INAF)

This image shows infrared views of two craters at the giant asteroid Vesta that NASA’s Dawn mission has found to sport the mineral olivine. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/ASI/INAF)

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