24 August 2010: Dawn is now just 31 million km away from Vesta

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

This in an update to this post, in order to get an idea of the distance from Dawn to its upcoming target 4 Vesta, and from when we should be able to get a clear view of the asteroid given its relatively large size. First a reminder of what 21 Lutetia looked like as seen by Rosetta when it was 900000 km away:

and then an updated image showing the distance between the two. There are actually two scales here: 21 Lutetia and 4 Vesta are to scale in terms of size, and the distance between the two is also to scale with 33 pixels representing the 900000 km distance from Dawn to 21 Lutetia, and thus 4 Vesta has moved about 100 pixels up. Its old position is shown in grey while the new position is black. Since the distance is continuing to shrink during the next update I'll need to shrink their sizes as well by a bit.

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