An Asteroid So Big It Has Its Own Moon

(Photo Credit: NASA.gov)

Four years into its mission The Dawn Space Craft is orbiting an asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. The craft is orbiting the 330 mile long asteroid to collect data. The asteroid is so big it’s expected to have its own moon like some asteroids do, although photography heading into the asteroid hasn’t shown anything yet. Scientist are hoping to find information on surface structure and the composition of the surface material. But what is the fate of Dawn? This is a unique mission where the craft arrives at a target location, spends a year there and then move’s onto another asteroid. Also, with Atlantis arriving back on earth on Thursday Derrick weighs in on the last space mission and what it means for NASA. And don’t miss what’s in the night sky this week.[audio: st20110718.mp3]

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.