NASA's Dawn spacecraft has returned another fine snap of Clanger homeworld Vesta – the substantial asteroid belt object seen here on 23 July from a distance of around 3,200 miles (5,200 kilometres): Dawn image of Vesta's dark side. Pic: NASA NASA elaborates: "Dawn took this image over Vesta's northern hemisphere after the …
Hope they're being careful
They could hit the Iron Chicken's nest as they orbit.
(Where's the Clanger icon?)
If Dawn discovers a moon orbiting Vesta, who do we have to petition to have it named "Iron Chicken"?
They need to get in closer ...
... so we can see into the craters. The dustbin lids are obscured by the shadows in these shots.
It got slammed...?
Those rings (bands?) look pretty impressive. Are they just a compression effect from an impact, I recall there is a huge crater at one of the poles. Or is there a more curious explanation?
Getting back to the business at hand.
ie a clanger-related comment...
The ridges are almost certainly a result of too much soup being extracted from the source - thus causing a catastrophic collapsing of the moons surface.
I suspect that an investigation needs to be launched into the soup dragons effectiveness, since surely she can't be doing her job properly.
And for those determined to be stick-in-the-muds about it I would imagine it's caused by gravitational tides, impacts or having been broken off the earth/ moon when the asteroid belt came into being.
Re: It got slammed...?
Well a good theory for the whole-body-sized ridge on Iapetus, moon of Saturn, supposes that an impact threw a lot of material into orbit around the moon which soon formed a ring that gradually rained back down to the surface. Maybe repeated instances like that for a smaller body like Vesta could explain a) the ridges, b) the fact they are more or less aligned. I suppose we'd need to know something about the body's rotational axis to make a better guess.
my money is on "slammed" (see also: Phobos)
The ridges and striations I'm seeing in the Vesta images are rather similar to the features seen on Mars' moon Phobos:
...where the ridges/fractures seem to be mostly near the huge impact feature at the left in this image. It's believed that the force of the impact that created that large crater also created the network of stress fractures in the crust.
I misread "shadow" at first - talk about a quickening of heart rate - an atmosphere!
The ridges/valleys remind me of Mars' two moons as well - very intriguing and exciting! I hope it's not something as boring as the gravitational tides as postulated above.
We come in pieces...
Hope the satellite has got plenty of blue string pudding to trade with. Otherwise the Iron Chicken will take it to bit to make a new chick.
No sign of the Soup Dragon
The grooves are the marks left by the ropes used to kick start the thing. Obviously.
...turn the image by 180 degrees
then the grooves will look like the 'f' for facebook
I'm outta here now...
I see what's wrong here...
They published the picture upside-down.
When you invert it, you get more detail:
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