Vesta’s dark side [and possibly a colourful one]

As the BBC spaceman, Jonathon Amos, notes Nasa’s Dawn spacecraft has taken a close look at the 530 km wide giant asteroid Vesta’s northern hemisphere– to add to all those earlier images.  This image was taken on 23 July, at a distance of about 3,200 miles (5,200 kilometers) away from the proto planet Vesta.  Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA.


And in a short while, 1700 UT [6pm BST], Nasa will be holding a press conference to present the latest findings.  Which may include some colour images.   As Jonathon Amos notes

The mission’s chief scientist, Dr Chris Russell from the University of California Los Angeles, told the BBC last week that the team had seen quite deep colouration in places – strong oranges and blues.

You can watch the conference online at NasaTV.  Or, indeed, here!

Update  I seem to have gotten my time conversions wrong – the actual science conference was held from 5pm to 6pm [BST].  But if, like me, you missed the original broadcast, it will be repeated on NasaTV at 7pm, and again at 9pm.  Hopefully…

Adds  I’ve removed the Ustream link and added the NasaTV coverage from YouTube.

And A neat animation of Vesta spinning, from images taken on 24 July. Via JPLNews.