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October 8, 2010 02:20 PM (EDT)

News Release Number: STScI-2010-33

NASA Mission to Asteroid Gets Help from Hubble Space Telescope

October 8, 2010: NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has captured images of the large asteroid Vesta that will help scientists refine plans for the Dawn spacecraft's rendezvous with Vesta in July 2011. Scientists have constructed a video from the images that will help improve pointing instructions for Dawn as it is placed in a polar orbit around Vesta. Analyses of Hubble images revealed a pole orientation, or tilt, of approximately four degrees more to the asteroid's east than scientists previously thought.

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Credit: NASA, ESA, and J.-Y. Li (University of Maryland, College Park), and L. McFadden (NASA GSFC)