Monday, July 12, 2010

Rosetta probe passes Asteroid Lutetia

Europe's Rosetta space probe has flown past the Asteroid Lutetia, returning a stream of scientific data for analysis. The rock - some 120km (75 miles) in its longest dimension - is the biggest asteroid yet visited by a satellite.

Pictures showed Lutetia to be quite irregular in shape, its surface marked by a number of wide impact craters and even some intriguing grooves. Rosetta's encounter with the asteroid occurred some 454 million km from Earth, beyond the orbit of Mars.

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