Asteroid Lutetia and Saturn in 1 Picture!!

I’m really too busy to write, but upon seeing this picture, I just have to share it!

At a distance of 36000km the OSIRIS Narrow Angle Camera (NAC) took this image catching the planet Saturn in the background. Credits: ESA 2010 MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/RSSD/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

The big lumpy world in the foreground is asteroid Lutetia, and the far away object in the upper left needs no introduction – a recognisable planet Saturn. Space is very empty, so to be able to catch two objects near each other is really rare, and beautiful…

This image is taken by a spacecraft from ESA called Rosetta. The main target for Rosetta is not actually this asteroid – it’s just passing by Lutetia on its way to explore Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

I’ve wrote about Rosetta before when it swingby our planet for a gravity assist last November and snap a lovely picture of our planet in crescent phase.

This flyby of Lutetia is providing us a close-up look of the asteroid which revealed a battered world of many craters.

Lutetia at Closest approach. Credits: ESA 2010 MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/RSSD/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

Awesome!

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~ by thChieh on July 11, 2010.

One Response to “Asteroid Lutetia and Saturn in 1 Picture!!”

  1. Asteroid Lutetia and Saturn in 1 Picture!! « My Dark Sky…

    I found your entry interesting do I’ve added a Trackback to it on my weblog :)…

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