Solar System Sun
Terrestrial Planet Mercury, Venus, Earth (Moon), Mars
Asteroid Belt Ceres, Vesta
Jovian Planet Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Kuiper Belt Pluto, Haumea, Makemake
Scattered Disc Eris, Sedna, Planet X
Oort Cloud Etc. Scholz’s Star
Small Body Comet, Centaur, Asteroid
These are organized by a classification scheme developed exclusively for Cosma. More…
Vesta, minor-planet designation 4 Vesta, is one of the largest objects in the asteroid belt, with a mean diameter of 525 kilometres (326 mi). It was discovered by the German astronomer Heinrich Wilhelm Olbers on 29 March 1807 and is named after Vesta, the virgin goddess of home and hearth from Roman mythology.
Vesta is the second-most-massive and second-largest body in the asteroid belt after the dwarf planet Ceres, and it contributes an estimated 9% of the mass of the asteroid belt. Vesta is the only known remaining rocky protoplanet (with a differentiated interior) of the kind that formed the terrestrial planets. Numerous fragments of Vesta were ejected by collisions one and two billion years ago that left two enormous craters occupying much of Vesta’s southern hemisphere. Debris from these events has fallen to Earth as howardite–eucrite–diogenite (HED) meteorites, which have been a rich source of information about Vesta.
Vesta is the brightest asteroid visible from Earth. Its maximum distance from the Sun is slightly greater than the minimum distance of Ceres from the Sun, though its orbit lies entirely within that of Ceres.
NASA’s Dawn spacecraft entered orbit around Vesta on 16 July 2011 for a one-year exploration and left orbit on 5 September 2012 en route to its final destination, Ceres. Researchers continue to examine data collected by Dawn for additional insights into the formation and history of Vesta. — Wikipedia
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- Asteroid 16 Psyche might not be what scientists...on June 9, 2021 at 8:28 pm
The widely studied metallic asteroid known as 16 Psyche was long thought to be the exposed iron core of a small planet that failed to form during the earliest days of the solar system. But new University of Arizona-led research suggests that the asteroid might not be as metallic or dense as once thought, and hints at a much different origin story.
- Asteroid that hit Botswana in 2018 likely came...on April 23, 2021 at 12:07 pm
An international team of researchers searched for pieces of a small asteroid tracked in space and then observed to impact Botswana on June 2, 2018. Guided by SETI Institute meteor astronomer Peter Jenniskens, they found 23 meteorites deep inside the Central Kalahari Game Reserve and now have published their findings online in the journal Meteoritics and Planetary Science.
- Extinct atom reveals the long-kept secrets of the...on March 2, 2021 at 2:01 pm
Using the extinct niobium-92 atom, ETH researchers have been able to date events in the early solar system with greater precision than before. The study concludes that supernova explosions must have taken place in the birth environment of our sun.
- NASA's OSIRIS-REx to asteroid Bennu: 'You've got...on September 22, 2020 at 1:21 pm
In an interplanetary faux pas, it appears some pieces of asteroid Vesta ended up on asteroid Bennu, according to observations from NASA's OSIRIS-REx spacecraft. The new result sheds light on the intricate orbital dance of asteroids and on the violent origin of Bennu, which is a "rubble pile" asteroid that coalesced from the fragments of a massive collision.
- Meteorite study calls into doubt a popular theory...on September 16, 2020 at 12:50 pm
It is generally accepted that the inner region of the early solar system was subject to an intense period of meteoric bombardment referred to as the late heavy bombardment. However, researchers have found evidence that suggests this period occurred slightly earlier than thought and was less intense but also more prolonged. Such details about this period could impact theories about the early Earth and the dawn of life.
- Geologic age of Finsen Crater on far side of the...on September 4, 2020 at 11:08 am
The absolute model age (AMA), or geologic age of Finsen crater on the moon's far side is determined to be about 3.5 billion years (Ga) based on crater counting method, according to a study published in Icarus.
- Ancient micrometeoroids carried specks of...on June 10, 2020 at 7:20 am
The formation of our solar system was a messy affair. Most of the material that existed before its formation—material formed around other, long-dead stars—was vaporized, then recondensed into new materials. But some grains of that material, formed before the sun's birth, still persist.
- First global map of rockfalls on the moonon June 8, 2020 at 1:20 pm
A research team from ETH Zurich and the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in Göttingen counted over 136,000 rockfalls on the moon caused by asteroid impacts. Even billions of years old landscapes are still changing.
- When baby planets melt: Searching for the...on May 8, 2020 at 12:50 pm
Let's start at the beginning. Before humans, before Earth, before any of the planets existed, there were baby planets—planetesimals. Coalesced from dust exploded outward by the solar nebula, these blobs of material were just a few kilometers in diameter. Soon, they too aggregated due to gravity to form the rocky planets in the innermost part of the solar system, leaving the early details about these planetesimals to the imagination.
- Astronomers discover planet that never wason April 20, 2020 at 7:00 pm
What astronomers thought was a planet beyond our solar system has now seemingly vanished from sight, suggesting that what was heralded as one of the first exoplanets to ever be discovered with direct imaging likely never existed.