Dec 2, 2011

Ravine 20 km in the Asteroid Vesta

Ravine 20 km in the Asteroid Vesta 
The gulf in the Asteroid Vesta (in red circle)

Dawn spacecraft launched by NASA on September 27, 2007, managed to uncover the mysteries of the asteroid Vesta, one of the largest asteroids in the solar system with a diameter of 515 km.

After successfully reveals the existence of a mountain as high as 24 kilometers at the south pole of Vesta and was named the second highest mountain in the solar system, the spacecraft has revealed the existence of gaps in the asteroid.

The chasm is so deep that if measured from the lowest to the highest surface, its depth is 2.5 times the height of Mount Everest, or about 20 km.

NASA's analysis suggests that the gap may be created because of landslides. Because Vesta's gravity is very small, only 2 percent of the Earth, then the expected avalanche occurs slowly.

Time of occurrence of landslides that resulted in gaps in the asteroid Vesta is not known with certainty. However, comparing with craters around the abyss, the abyss is probably old.

The discovery of this gap is one of the amazing discoveries Dawn. Last month, the spacecraft Dawn also managed to find a mountain as high as 24 kilometers, and became the second highest mountain in the solar system.

Vesta Dawn spacecraft has followed for 4 years. Next year, studying Vesta Dawn mission will end. Starting next year, the Dawn spacecraft will study Ceres.
Daily Mail

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