These images from NASA's Dawn spacecraft show part of asteroid Vesta's equatorial region, which contains impact craters and troughs (linear depressions).
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Topography of Vesta's Equatorial Region III

These Dawn FC (framing camera) images show part of Vesta's equatorial region, which contains impact craters and troughs (linear depressions). The left image is an albedo image, which is taken directly through the clear filter of the FC. Such an image shows the albedo (e.g. brightness/darkness) of the surface. The right image uses the same albedo image as its base but then a color-coded height representation of the topography is overlain onto it. The topography is calculated from a set of images that were observed from different viewing directions, called stereo images. The various colors correspond to the height of the area that they color. For example, the white area in the bottom of the image is the highest area and the blue area in the top right of the image is the lowest. This blue area corresponds to a large circular depression, which is perhaps a very eroded ancient crater. The troughs, which run across the bottom of the image, do not have a continuous height along their lengths.

NASA's Dawn spacecraft obtained the albedo image with its framing camera on August 11th 2011. This image was taken through the camera's clear filter. The distance to the surface of Vesta is 2740 km the image has a resolution of about 250 meters per pixel. The images are projected using a lambert-azimuthal map projection.

The Dawn mission to Vesta and Ceres is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington D.C.. UCLA is responsible for overall Dawn mission science. Dawn's VIR was provided by ASI, the Italian Space Agency and is managed by INAF, Italy's National Institute for Astrophysics, in collaboration with Selex Galileo, where it was built.

More information about Dawn is online at http://www.nasa.gov/dawn and http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov.

Image details

ID#:
PIA15043

Date added:
2011-11-09

Mission:
Dawn

Spacecraft:
Dawn

Instruments:
Framing Camera

Rating:



Views:
3,062

Full-Res TIFF:
PIA15043.tif (14.85 MB)

Full-Res JPG:
PIA15043.jpg (0.39 MB)

Image credit:
NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA