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Dawn Spacecraft Approaches Vespa
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Dawn Spacecraft Approaches Vespa
The Dawn spacecraft is rapidly approaching the asteroid belt between Jupiter and Mars, and its primary destination - the protoplanet Vesta. This video shows a NASA simulation of what the surface of Vesta may look like.

The Dawn spacecraft is a robotic probe deployed by NASA to orbit and examine the two most massive bodies in the asteroid belt: Vesta and the dwarf planet Ceres.

Dawn was originally launched on September 27, 2007 and is scheduled to explore Vesta between 2011 and 2012, and then proceed onto the Dwarf planet Ceres in 2015. Not only is Dawn the first spacecraft to visit either body, it is also the first space probe to enter into orbit around a celestial body, perform its mission, and then re-embark under powered flight towards a second target. To date, every multiple target mission, including Voyager, has been performed by planetary flybys and gravitational slingshots.

For more information, click here.

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Posted by nova on April 30, 2011
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