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Subject: Dawn Obtains First Low Altitude Images of Vesta rss

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San Clemente
California
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Here the truceless armies yet / Trample, rolled in blood and sweat; / They kill and kill and never die; / And I think that each is I. // None will part us, none undo / The knot that makes one flesh of two, /
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Sick with hatred, sick with pain, / Strangling -- When shall we be slain? // When shall I be dead and rid / Of the wrong my father did? / How long, how long, till spade and hearse / Puts to sleep my mother's curse?
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http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/dawn/news/dawn20111221.htm...

LOS ANGELES -- NASA's Dawn spacecraft has been a fervent photographer, snapping more than 10,000 pictures of the asteroid Vesta since it slipped into orbit around the giant space rock last summer.

The views were taken from a distance away – until now. On Wednesday, the space agency released new images of the hummocky surface as Dawn circled from an average altitude of 130 miles above the surface – the closest it'll get.

From this low orbit, scientists can count numerous small impact craters and see textured grooves and outcrops in sharp detail.

"We're totally thrilled with the data we're getting. It seems to get better," said mission deputy principal investigator Carol Raymond of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which manages the $466 million mission.

By inching this close to Vesta, Dawn will use other instruments to measure the gravity field and determine its chemical makeup to better understand its origins.

Dawn will spend the next 2 1/2 months at the current altitude before moving higher to take another round of pictures. By that time, the sun will hit Vesta at a different angle and illuminate sections of the northern hemisphere that had been shrouded earlier.

About the length of Arizona with a huge crater at its south pole, Vesta is the second largest body residing in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. Asteroids are leftovers from the solar system's birth some 4.5 billion years ago and studying these bodies could offer clues about how rocky planets like Earth formed.

Previous spacecraft have visited smaller asteroids before, but this is the first trip to Vesta.

Powered by ion propulsion, Dawn began orbiting Vesta in July after a 1.7 billion-mile cruise. It will depart Vesta next summer and will fly to an even bigger asteroid, Ceres, where it will arrive in 2015.
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United States
San Clemente
California
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Here the truceless armies yet / Trample, rolled in blood and sweat; / They kill and kill and never die; / And I think that each is I. // None will part us, none undo / The knot that makes one flesh of two, /
badge
Sick with hatred, sick with pain, / Strangling -- When shall we be slain? // When shall I be dead and rid / Of the wrong my father did? / How long, how long, till spade and hearse / Puts to sleep my mother's curse?
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Interesting USAF Air War University paper (later book) published in 1999:

http://space.au.af.mil/books/oberg/
 
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Mike Hoyt

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David, the same book is available at Amazon

http://www.amazon.com/Space-Power-Theory-James-Oberg/dp/B000...

I'd like to hold off buying until somebody writes a review... HINT !
 
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