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12 December 2013 1:00 pm ,
Vol. 342 ,
In an ambitious project to study 1000 years of sickness and health, researchers are excavating the graveyard of the now...
Stefan Behnisch has won awards for designing science labs and other buildings that are smart, sustainable, and...
The iconic 125-year-old Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton near San Jose, California, is facing the threat of closure...
Recent results from the Curiosity Mars rover have helped scientists formulate a plan for the next phase of its mission...
A new, remarkably powerful drug that cripples the hepatitis C virus (HCV) came to market last week, but it sells for $...
In pretoothbrush populations, gumlines would often be marred by a thick, visible crust of calcium phosphate, food...
Evolutionary biologists have long studied how the Mexican tetra, a drab fish that lives in rivers and creeks but has...
Victorian astronomers spent countless hours laboriously charting the positions of stars in the sky. Such sky mapping,...
- 12 December 2013 1:00 pm , Vol. 342 , #6164
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ScienceShot: Asteroid Vesta Exceeds Expectations
3 October 2011 2:01 pm
The 529-kilometer-diameter asteroid Vesta is revealing even more geologic diversity than scientists had expected. They knew that a collision with another asteroid had splashed off three kinds of rock that still land on Earth as meteorites. And Vesta's overall spectral color, as returned by NASA's orbiting Dawn spacecraft, matches that of these Vesta meteorites, Dawn team members reported today at a planetary science meeting in Nantes, France. But rather than a monotonously uniform surface homogenized by impact cratering over the eons, the first up-close look at the asteroid reveals a full palette of mineral "colors" (mapped here in false color reflecting the wide range of rock compositions). Researchers will now have to sort out how more than 4 billion years of impacts—including one at the south pole that nearly destroyed the asteroid—reshaped Vesta after it developed a crust, mantle, and core much like Earth's.
See more ScienceShots.