Galileo captures asteroid image


  • Anonymous


On October 29 the Galileo spacecraft took the first close-up image ever of an asteroid, from about 16,200 kilometers away. Galileo's encounter with Gaspra, an intermediate-sized asteroid, on the spacecraft's way to Jupiter, gave the mission's scientists a glimpse of Gaspra's “violent” geological history.

According to Galileo project scientist Torrence Johnson, the encounter aimed to get a first look at the asteroid, assess its composition, and survey its environment. Michael Belton, imaging team leader, said that the navigators used “entirely unprecedented” precision to point the camera at Gaspra.