Rosetta meets Lutetia

Some of the first released high-resolution images of 21 Lutetia taken by Rosetta (images: ESA) The Rosetta close encounter with asteroid 21 Lutetia early yesterday evening was certainly a big success. The first images are very impressive and there is a lot more data to follow in the coming weeks. Based on the initial images,…

Asteroid Encounter – Here’s Looking at You Kid

Artist’s impression of Rosetta close encounter with asteroid 21 Lutetia (Image: ESA) The Rosetta spacecraft is due to make history tomorrow (10 July at 17:10 BST )* when it will fly past the asteroid 21 Lutetia at a distance of 3162 km. 21 Lutetia, which is about 100 km in diameter, will be the largest…

Non-Identical Twins

Not quite Venus! Somewhere nice in Aussois, France (image Maurienne-tourisme) We may have to wait a bit before we have samples from Venus (see last entry), but that doesn’t stop us finding out a lot more about our twin planet, thanks to ESA’s Venus Express probe. Twin planet! Well I guess that’s pushing it a…

Hayabusa – Particles Found!

Picture of opened Hayabusa sample canister showing dust particles (image JAXA) According to a BBC report earlier today, pictures have now been released by JAXA (Japanese Space Agency) showing particles collected by the Hayabusa spacecraft. The image above shows the opened canister, with what appear to be quite large particles. The second image below shows…