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Asteroid

— Space

World Asteroid Day raises awareness of a deadly menace

By - July 2, 2015 7 Pictures

June 30th marked the world's first Asteroid Day – a global awareness campaign designed to promote an understanding of the dangers presented by the rocky bodies, and how best to protect our planet from a potentially catastrophic asteroid impact. Significantly, the campaign was held on the anniversary of the 1908 Tunguska asteroid strike – an impact that devastated eight hundred square miles of Siberian forest, and served as a powerful indicator of the damage that could be wrought by just one of the 600,000 plus known asteroids whizzing around our solar system.

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— Space

ESA to collaborate with Japan in daring asteroid mission

By - April 29, 2015 2 Pictures
ESA has announced its intent to aid the Japan Aerospace and Exploration Agency (JAXA) with its ambitious Hayabusa-2 mission to retrieve material samples from an asteroid, and return said samples to Earth by the year 2020. Following a successful launch last December atop a H-IIA rocket, the probe will now benefit from 400 hours of tracking and telemetry from ESA's 35 m (115 ft) diameter dish at Malargüe, Argentina. Read More
— Space

NASA application grants general public the opportunity to explore the surface of Vesta

By - April 28, 2015 2 Pictures
NASA has released a browser-based application that allows citizen scientists to explore the surface of the asteroid Vesta. The 3D model was created from data harvested by the agency's Dawn spacecraft over the course of its year-long stay in orbit around the asteroid between July 2011 and September 2012. The application allows users a rare opportunity to make detailed observations of one of the lesser-known bodies in our solar system in an engaging, easy-to-use format. Read More
— Space

NASA's Space Launch System to deploy 11 additional satellites on maiden launch

By - April 7, 2015 1 Picture
NASA is planning to maximize the scientific potential of the maiden launch of its next generation launch vehicle, the Space Launch System, by selecting 11 tiny satellites to ride shotgun. The little probes, known as CubeSats, will be transported in the SLS's upper stage adaptor, presenting a cost-effective delivery option for experiments designed to function beyond low-Earth orbit. Read More
— Space

Dawn orbits dwarf planet Ceres

By - March 6, 2015 5 Pictures
NASA's Dawn spacecraft added another trophy today to the conquest of space as it went into orbit around Ceres. According to the space agency, the unmanned probe arrived at about 4:39 am PST and is currently circling the dwarf planet at an altitude of about 38,000 miles (61,000 km) – making it not only the first spacecraft to reach a dwarf planet, but also the first to orbit two extraterrestrial bodies. Read More
— Space

NASA releases new Ceres images prior to Friday encounter

By - March 3, 2015 5 Pictures
As NASA’s Dawn spacecraft makes its final approach to Ceres, the ion-propelled spacecraft is sending the best images yet with more details about the surface of the dwarf planet. The images from Dawn have shown the presence of numerous craters and unusual bright spots that scientist hope will provide clues as to not only how Ceres formed and if it is still active, but the early history of the Solar System as well. Read More
— Space

ESA offers CubeSats a deep space ride on asteroid mission

By - February 28, 2015 4 Pictures
CubeSats offer a way to get into space on the cheap. They're compact, inexpensive, and they can piggyback on larger launch payloads to get into orbit. The trouble is, this piggybacking is often like trying to hitchhike cross country on a ride that only goes to the edge of town. The European Space Agency is widening the scope a little by opening a competition for CubeSats to ride into deep space on its Asteroid Impact Mission (AIM). Read More
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