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 Post subject: Vesta vista ..
PostPosted: Mon Jul 25, 2011 3:42 pm 
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Location: Lancashire
Dawn over Vesta: http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap110719.html .

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2011 7:35 am 
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I wish these sites would stop suggesting that Vesta is the second largest asteroid in the main belt. As far as I am aware, it is fractionally smaller than Pallas, although more massive.

Whilst checking for confirmation of the relative sizes of Vesta and Pallas, I noticed the interesting possibility that, if the Dawn spacecraft is fit and healthy after its mission at Ceres has been completed, it could be directed towards Pallas for a flyby when the asteroid crosses the ecliptic plane in 2018. Going into orbit would be impossible, due to the high orbital inclination of Pallas (34.8 degrees).


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2011 9:07 am 
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An interesting feature is the large dome at the centre of Vesta. Now how could that have been formed? :?

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:07 pm 
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Yes, that is a very striking feature. It's amazing how every close encounter with a new object seems to reveal features that have never been seen before.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:14 pm 
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Above the dome there's a huge cliff-face. This looks to have resulted from slumping, with the slumped material piled up against the face.

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