Dusk for Dawn, NASA's Mission to the Asteroid Belt
The mission has ended for NASA’s Dawn spacecraft, but the science lives on. Dawn was an intrepid explorer of the asteroid belt and the first mission to orbit two worlds beyond Earth: https://go.nasa.gov/2zl1Y5T. For more info on the mission, visit https://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov
Dawn: Mission to Small Worlds
Original air date: Friday, Sept. 7 at 11 a.m. PT (2 p.m. ET, 1800 UTC)
Join JPL for a Science Chat to talk about the role of the agency's Dawn spacecraft in studying the beginning of our solar system, and the approaching end of its 11-year mission.
Jim Green, NASA chief scientist
Carol Raymond, Dawn principal investigator at JPL
Marc Rayman, Dawn mission director and chief engineer at JPL
Follow us on your favorite social media platforms for updates @NASAJPL.
Dusk for Dawn: NASA Mission to the Asteroid Belt
NASA’s Dawn spacecraft turned science fiction into science fact by using ion propulsion to explore the two largest bodies in the main asteroid belt, Vesta and Ceres. The mission will end this fall, when the spacecraft runs out of hydrazine, which keeps it oriented and in communication with Earth. For more info on the mission, visit https://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov
Move Over, Mars: We Could Farm on Asteroids!
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When people live throughout the solar system, we'll need some way to feed them that doesn't involve constant shipments of Earth-grown food. Will the asteroid belt be our new cosmic food court?
Host: Caitlin Hofmeister
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Space Rock Formed in Asteroid Belt 'Exiled' to the Kuiper Belt
European Southern Observatory telescopes were used to confirm that Kuiper Belt Object (KBO) 2004 EW95 is carbon-rich, suggesting it was born in the inner solar system. Astronomers believe that the space rock formed in the asteroid belt and at some point was jolted into a trip to the Kuiper Belt. -- Full Story: https://www.space.com/40532-exiled-ancient-asteroid-discovered.html
Gaia’s first asteroid survey
Animated view of the 14 099 asteroids in our Solar System, as viewed by ESA’s Gaia satellite using information from the mission’s second data release. The orbits of the 200 brightest asteroids are also shown, as determined using Gaia data.
In future data releases, Gaia will also provide asteroid spectra and enable a complete characterisation of the asteroid belt. The combination of dynamical and physical information that is being collected by Gaia provides an unprecedented opportunity to improve our understanding of the origin and the evolution of the Solar System.
Credit: ESA/Gaia/DPAC, CC BY SA 3.0 IGO
Acknowledgement: Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium (DPAC); Orbits: Gaia Coordinating Unit 4; P. Tanga, Observatoire de la Côte d'Azur, France; F. Spoto, IMCCE, Observatoire de Paris, France; Animation: Gaia Sky; S. Jordan / T. Sagristà, Astronomisches Rechen-Institut, Zentrum für Astronomie der Universität Heidelberg, Germany
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NASA's NEOWISE: Four Years of Asteroid and Comet Data
NASA's asteroid-hunting NEOWISE survey uses infrared to detect and characterize asteroids and comets. Since the mission was restarted in December 2013, NEOWISE has observed or detected more than 29,000 asteroids in infrared light, of which 788 were near-Earth objects.
The orbits of Mercury, Venus and Mars are shown in blue. Earth's orbit is in teal.
Green dots represent near-Earth objects. Gray dots represent all other asteroids which are mainly in the main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. Yellow squares represent comets.
The survey depicted in the animation covers the period from December 13, 2013 to December 13, 2017.
What is the Asteroid BELT? - The Science KID
This video is about the asteroid belt that contains asteroids, the dwarf-planet Ceres, and more! Recommended Grade Levels- Science 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, High School.
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The Science Kid is a scientific genius in a 12 year-old body! I post Science Videos on about everything Science. I hope you enjoy 😊 Remember "Science Can Always Be FUN!"
The Asteroid BELT IS CRAZY!
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Michio Kaku predicts asteroid mining will happen sooner than you think
Good news! We're on the precipice of the next great gold rush... but it won't be in the hills of California. Or anywhere on this planet. It'll be in outer space, as there are untapped rare materials in asteroids that could be used for future technologies. That's right: there's gold in them thar skies! Theoretical physicist and one of our favorite Big Thinkers, Dr. Michio Kaku, explains to us that while China might have a stranglehold on the rare minerals and metals on our planet, there's no stopping interplanetary mining. We've even got an actual plan with actual economics already in place... we just have to wait until NASA's SLS rocket technology fully develops. Michio Kaku's latest book is the awesome The Future of Humanity: Terraforming Mars, Interstellar Travel, Immortality, and Our Destiny Beyond Earth
Read more at BigThink.com: http://bigthink.com/videos/michio-kaku-asteroid-mining-will-happen-sooner-than-you-think
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Transcript: When I was researching my book The Future of Humanity I came across a comment made by Thomas Jefferson. Thomas Jefferson made the biggest gamble of his life buying the Louisiana Purchase from Napoleon. Napoleon was fighting the British he needed hard cash immediately. He had Louisiana and that whole middle portion of the United States and so Napoleon sold it to Thomas Jefferson for a song. But Thomas Jefferson thought how long would it take to investigate what he had just purchased? He had doubled the size of the USA. Think about that. And he probably violated the Constitution in the process. Everyone forgets that. Everyone glosses over that fact, but hey when Louis and Clark went into the territories that comprised the Louisiana Purchase they found tremendous prospects for wealth and prosperity, but Thomas Jefferson wrote that it may take a thousand years, a thousand years before they could then begin to settle the west.
Well, how long did it take? A few decades because what happened? Gold. Gold was discovered in California sparking the gold rush and within just a few years millions of prospectors, settlers, fortune hunters converged on California. It didn’t take a thousand years to develop that. Then the question now is is there going to be a new gold rush in outer space? Some people think so. Some Google billionaires have created an organization, a company, Planetary Resources, that are looking into prospecting in the asteroid belt. Now, asteroids come in all shapes and sizes and we’re cataloging them now and we have already found some perspective asteroids that could be mined. One asteroid perhaps maybe 30/50 feet across brought back down either to the moon or to the planet earth could in fact yield billions of dollars in rewards because of the rare earths and the platinum type medals that you find inside. You see, the electronics industry is dependent upon rare earths. Where are these rare earth elements found it? Mainly in China. They’re everywhere, of course, but China has the most developed market and the Chinese in turn supply on the order of 90 percent of the rare earths.
Well, a few years ago they decided to capitalize that and raise the price. All of a sudden shockwaves, shockwaves spread around the earth because people realized that oh my God China has a stranglehold, a stranglehold on high technology. How can you build the next iPhone if you don’t have the rare earths to make the transistors and to make the delicate components of these high tech devices? So I think what’s happening here is that some people see an area for profit and that is asteroid mining. Now of course, the infrastructure for that doesn’t exist, but NASA has looked at its budget and does have a program that has been shelved temporarily to redirect an asteroid. The Asteroid Redirect Program is to send of the SL ass booster rocket into outer space with the Orion capsule. It will then intercept an asteroid and bring it back to orbit around the moon. Then it can be mined as it orbits around the moon or as it’s brought back to planet earth. And so this is now beyond the phase of science fiction. We’re no longer talking about dreaming about an asteroid redirect, we’re talking about an actual plan with the economics, with the details laid out. However, at the present time we have to wait for NASA’s SLS rocket to mature to the point where we can intercept an asteroid.
SpaceX rocket now on a trajectory toward asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter
At mission control, 6,000 workers cheered the launch Tuesday.
Classroom Aid - Asteroid Belt
Text at http://howfarawayisit.com/documents/
Solar System 101 | National Geographic
How many planets are in the solar system? How did it form in the Milky Way galaxy? Learn facts about the solar system’s genesis, plus its planets, moons, and asteroids.
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Solar System 101 | National Geographic
Was Our Asteroid Belt Once A Planet? #AskDNews
The Main Asteroid Belt sits between Mars and Jupiter. How did it form? Did there used to be a planet there?
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“The Titius-Bode Law is rough rule that predicts the spacing of the planets in the Solar System. The relationship was first pointed out by Johann Titius in 1766 and was formulated as a mathematical expression by J.E. Bode in 1778. It lead Bode to predict the existence of another planet between Mars and Jupiter in what we now recognize as the asteroid belt.”
“The asteroid belt is a region of the solar system falling roughly between the planets Mars and Jupiter where the greatest concentration of asteroid orbits can be found.”
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Five Facts About Asteroids
A quick video to teach you 5 fun things about Asteroids in under 5 minutes. Enjoy! Thanks for watching!
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MISSIONS: Dawn In The Asteroid Belt With Marc Rayman
The MISSIONS series at Cross Campus Pasadena continues with the first mission to orbit two mysterious bodies in our solar system. Mat Kaplan and Emily Lakdawalla will welcome Dawn Mission Director Marc Rayman for this live conversation. What are those bright spots on Ceres anyway? Program begins at 7:00pm Pacific.
Why Are There No Planets in the Asteroid Belt?
The asteroid belt provides important clues into the history of our solar system. Meteorite specialist Denton Ebel, curator in the Division of Physical Sciences, explains different theories of solar system formation and how the asteroid belt figures into the stable configuration of planets that we know today.
ASTEROID CRASH COURSE
Asteroids can be hazardous to life on Earth, but they also provide clues about the early solar system. In the Asteroid Crash Course video series, Denton Ebel, curator in the Museum's Division of Physical Sciences, explains how asteroids formed and the varying degrees of destruction they cause when they fall to Earth.
What is an Asteroid?
Meteorite, Meteor: What’s the Difference?
What Were the Biggest Asteroids to Hit Earth?
Can Asteroids Be Deflected?
What Happens When Large Meteorites Fall to Earth?
How Are Large Asteroids Tracked?
WHY ARE THERE NO PLANETS IN THE ASTEROID BELT?
“Journey to the Stars” by AMNH, the California Academy of
Sciences, GOTO Inc., Papalote Museo del Niño, and
And Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center/Conceptual Image Lab
“Solar System” by G. Small and F. Gerard/
Warner Chappell Production Music
“Asteroid Bad Connection Breathless Stinger” by Sam Ecoff and
Samuel E. Ghanish/Warner Chappell Production Music
“Harp Glisses” by Craig Sharmat/Warner Chappell Production Music
“Spooky Spiral” by Robert Dudzic, Warner Chappell Production Music
Freesound.org/martian, RMaudio, Selector
JOURNEY TO THE STARS
Journey to the Stars was developed by the American Museum of Natural History, New York in collaboration with the California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco; GOTO INC, Tokyo, Japan; Papalote Museo del Niño, Mexico City, Mexico and Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, Washington, D.C.
Journey to the Stars was created by the American Museum of Natural History, with the major support and partnership of NASA, Science Mission Directorate, Heliophysics Division.
Made possible through the generous sponsorship of Lockheed Martin.
And proudly sponsored by Accenture.
Supercomputing resources provided by the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) at The University of Texas at Austin,
through the TeraGrid, a project of the National Science Foundation.
StorNext File System donated by Quantum.
Asteroid Discovery - 1970-2015 - 8K resolution
The latest version of this famous video.
Music is 'Thinking Out Loud' by Kevin Macleod, Incompetech.com
NASA discovers massive asteroid belt that may give a clue to Earth's origins
(25 Apr 2005)
San Diego, California, USA - recent
1: ANIMATION sequence of asteroid belt around distant star
2: SOUNDBITE: (English) Dr. Charles Beichman, NASA: "I think we're trying to build up a picture...
3: ANIMATION sequence of Spitzer telescope
4: SOUNDBITE: (English) Dr. Charles Beichman, NASA: "This will not generate any images...
5: ANIMATION sequence of view of asteroid belt from planet
NASA scientists have discovered what they believe may be a giant asteroid belt circling a star 41 light years away.
The phenomenon was first glimpsed by the Spitzer telescope which, like the Hubble telescope, is in orbit near to Earth.
Unlike, Hubble however, which sees in the visible spectrum, Spitzer looks into the infra-red band.
It detected a heat source associated with multiple collisions of rocky material.
NASA believes the information may help the search for terrestrial planets similar to our own, some of which may contain life.
This is what scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory think they may have found - a massive asteroid belt containing twenty five times more material than the one in our solar system.
It circles a star 41 light years away.
What interests the scientists is that it may give clues as to how rocky planets, like our own Earth formed - and where to look for them.
"I think we're trying to build up a picture of planetary systems and over the next decade or so we'll be able to give a very complete picture of how this system behaves and how solar systems like our own sun form and eventually be able to look for other terrestrial planets possibly with signs of life."
SUPER CAPTION: Dr. Charles Beichman, NASA
The phenomenon was observed by the Spitzer telescope.
Less well known that its orbiting fellow, Hubble, Spitzer observes the universe in the infra-red part of the spectrum.
Spitzer looks for heat sources and what it found orbiting star 69830 was excess radiation associated with a massive amount of rocky material.
When dust and larger rocks jostle each other they create friction and minature explosions which Spitzer picked up.
Eventually Hubble's attention will be focused on the phenomenon, because the system is too far away for Spitzer to generate an image
"This will not generate any images. The star is too far away for us to generate an image. Now we do have scheduled time on the Hubble telescope and that might get us an image, but that won't be for another 3 to 6 months. We're working closely with the Hubble people and we might be able to see a hint of the disc in such a Hubble image."
SUPER CAPTION: Dr. Charles Beichman, NASA
And this is what you might see on a hypothetical planet in the solar system that Spitzer observed.
As the sun sets and the sky darkens, the asteroid belt is revealed as a brilliant band of light, sparkling as asteroids collide with each other.
What is not shown are the planetary impacts that scientists say must occur when an asteroid belt is so close and so massive.
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Comets and Asteroids!
Our journey through the solar system continues, as Jessi gives you a close look at comets and asteroids!
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-Atmosphere photo By Tecnòlegs de l'IES Bisbal
Asteroids: Crash Course Astronomy #20
Now that we’ve finished our tour of the planets, we’re headed back to the asteroid belt. Asteroids are chunks of rock, metal, or both that were once part of smallish planets but were destroyed after collisions. Most orbit the Sun between Mars and Jupiter, but some get near the Earth. The biggest, Ceres is far smaller than the Moon but still big enough to be round and have undergone differentiation.
CORRECTION: In the episode we say that 2010 TK7 is 800 km away. However, 2010 TK7 stays on average 150 million kilometers from Earth, but that can vary wildly.
Sorry about that!
Table of Contents
Asteroids Are Chunks of Rock, Metal, or Both 1:45
Most Orbit the Sun Between Mars and Jupiter 7:16
Ceres is Far Smaller Than the Moon, But Large Enough to be Round 3:43
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Timelapse of Asteroid 2004 FH's flyby http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Asteroid_2004_FH.gif [credit: NASA/JPL Public Domain]
Asteroid Discovery Video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2k2vkLEE4ko [credit: Scott Manley - [email protected]
Inner Solar System http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:InnerSolarSystem-en.png [credit: Wikimedia Commons]
Kirkwood gaps http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Kirkwood-gaps-as-disk.png [credit: Wikimedia Commons]
Ceres, Earth & Moon size comparison http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Ceres,_Earth_%26_Moon_size_comparison.jpg [credit: NASA]
Dawn Glimpses Ceres’ North Pole http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?release=2015-133 [credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA]
Ceres cutaway http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ceres_Cutaway.jpg [credit: NASA, ESA, and A. Feild (STScI)]
Bright Spot on Ceres Has Dimmer Companion http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/spaceimages/details.php?id=PIA19185 [credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA]
Vesta http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4_Vesta#/media/File:Vesta_full_mosaic.jpg [credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCAL/MPS/DLR/IDA]
Lutetia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/21_Lutetia#/media/File:Lutetia_closest_approach_(Rosetta).jpg [credit: ESA]
Gaspra http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Galileo_Gaspra_Mosaic.jpg [credit: NASA]
Steins http://neo.ssa.esa.int/image/image_gallery?uuid=db747cf5-9d21-405e-bcdb-e70fe475edc9&groupId=10157&t=1340734455649 [credit: ESA/Osiris]
Mathilde http://neo.jpl.nasa.gov/images/mathilde1.jpg [credit: NEAR Spacecraft Team, JHUAPL, NASA]
Ida http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/243_Ida#/media/File:243_ida_crop.jpg [credit: NASA/JPL]
Kleopatra http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap000510.html [credit: Stephen Ostro et al. (JPL), Arecibo Radio Telescope, NSF, NASA]
An artist's conception of two Pluto-sized dwarf planets in a collision around Vega. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Methods_of_detecting_exoplanets#/media/File:Massive_Smash-Up_at_Vega.jpg [credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle (SSC)]
Itokawa http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap140209.html [credit: ISAS, JAXA]
An artist's illustration showing two asteroid belts and a planet orbiting Epsilon Eridani http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epsilon_Eridani#/media/File:NASA-JPL-Caltech_-_Double_the_Rubble_(PIA11375)_(pd).jpg [credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech]
Near-Earth Asteroids http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/images/asteroid/20130204/asteroid20130204-full.jpg [credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech]
Lagrange Points Diagram http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trojan_(astronomy)#/media/File:Lagrange_very_massive.svg [credit: Wikimedia Commons]
TK7 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_TK7#/media/File:PIA14405-full_crop.jpg [credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA]
165347 Philplait http://www.slate.com/content/dam/slate/blogs/bad_astronomy/2014/01/20/asteroidphilplait_panstarrs.jpg.CROP.original-original.jpg [credit: Larry Denneau/Pan-STARRS via Amy Mainzer]
Now Appearing at a Dwarf Planet Near You: NASA's Dawn Mission to the Asteroid Belt
April 8, 2015
Dr. Marc Rayman (JPL)
Dr. Rayman, the Mission Director for the Dawn exploration of Vesta and Ceres, explains the unusual mission (the first to orbit two different bodies in the solar system), what it found at Vesta, and what it is going to do when it gets to Ceres, the largest asteroid and the first dwarf planet discovered. He also gives a behind-the-scenes tour of the Dawn launch and the ion propulsion that allows it to visit multiple targets.
How Dense is the Asteroid Belt?
We've seen way too many science fiction episodes that show asteroid belts as dense fields of tumbling boulders. How dense is the asteroid belt, and how to spacecraft survive getting through them?
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Team: Fraser Cain - @fcain
Jason Harmer - @jasoncharmer
Susie Murph - @susiemmurph
Brian Koberlein - @briankoberlein
Chad Weber - [email protected]
Kevin Gill - @kevinmgill
Created by: Fraser Cain and Jason Harmer
Edited by: Chad Weber
Music: Left Spine Down - “X-Ray”
For the purposes of revenue, lazy storytelling, and whatever it is Zak Snyder tells himself to get out of bed in the morning, when it comes to asteroids, Science fiction and video games creators have done something of disservice to your perception of reality.
Take a fond trip down sci-fi memory lane, and think about the time someone, possibly you, has had to dogfight or navigate through yet another frakkin’ asteroid belt. Huge space rocks tumbling dangerously in space! Action! Adventure! Only the skilled pilot, with her trusty astromecha-doplis ship can maneuver through the dense cluster of space boulders, dodging this way and that, avoiding certain collision.
And then she shoots her pew pew laser breaking up larger asteroids up into smaller ones, possibly obliterating them entirely depending on the cg budget. Inevitably, there’s bobbing and weaving. Pursuit craft will clip their wings on asteroids, spinning off into nearby tango. Some will fly straight into a space boulder. Finally you’ll thread the needle on a pair of asteroids and the last ship of the whatever they’re called clicky clacky mantis Zorak bug people will try and catch you, but he/it won’t be quite so lucky. Poetically getting squashed like… a… bug. Sackhoff for the win, pilot victorious.
Okay, you probably knew the laser part is totally fake. I mean, everybody knows you can’t hear sounds in space. Outside of Starbuck being awesome, is that at all realistic? And if so, how does NASA maneuver unmanned spacecraft through that boulder-strewn grand canyon death trap to reach the outer planets?
The asteroid belt is a vast region between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. Our collection of space rocks starts around 300 million kilometers from the Sun and ends around 500 million kilometers. The first asteroid, the dwarf planet Ceres which measures 950 km across, was discovered in 1801, with a “That’s funny.”. Soon after astronomers turned up many more small objects orbiting in this region at the “Oooh neat!” stage.
They realized it was a vast belt of material orbiting the Sun, with I suspect a “We’re all gonna die.”. To date, almost half a million asteroids have been discovered, most of which are in the main belt.
As mentioned in a another video, gathering up all the material in the asteroid belt and gluing it together makes a mass around 4% of the Moon. So, in case one of your friends gets excited and suggests it was a failed planet, you can bust out that stat and publicly shame them for being so 1996, Goodwill Hunting style. You like asteroids? How about them asteroids?
There’s a few hundred larger than 100 km across, and tens of millions of rocks a hundred meters across. Any one of these could ruin a good day, or bring a bad day to a welcome firey close for either a depressed wayfaring spacecraft or a little bluegreen speck of a planet. Which sounds dangerous all the way around.
Fortunately, our asteroid belt is a vast region of space. Let’s wind up the perspective-o-meter. If you divide the total number of objects in the field by the volume of space that asteroid belt takes up, each space rock is separated by hundreds of thousands of kilometers. Think of it as gravity’s remarkably spacious zen rock garden.
As a result, when NASA engineers plot a spacecraft’s route through the asteroid belt, they don’t expect to make a close encounter with any asteroids - in fact, they’ll change its flight path to intercept asteroids en route. Because hey look, asteroid!
The von Kármán Lecture Series: Dawn’s Mission to the Asteroid Belt
A Theodore von Kármán Lecture Series talk, held December 4 and 5 at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, addressed the ambitious and exciting mission of the Dawn spacecraft, one of NASA's most remarkable ventures into the solar system. After more than seven years of interplanetary spaceflight, which included a spectacular exploration of the asteroid Vesta, the Dawn probe is just a few months away from the mysterious world, Ceres. Ceres and Vesta are two of the most massive residents of the main asteroid belt, that vast collection of bodies between Mars and Jupiter. Dr. Marc Rayman, Dawn Project Mission Director, is the featured speaker.
Why Isn't the Asteroid Belt a Planet?
It seems like there's a strange gap in between Mars and Jupiter filled with rocky rubble. Why didn't the asteroid belt form into a planet, like the rest of the Solar System?
The Asteroid Belt: Not What You Think!
Buckle up for a trip to the asteroid belt -- though it's not nearly as dangerous out there as you might think. But there's a LOT waiting to be discovered, including some crucial clues about the formation of the solar system itself.
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How Does the Asteroid Belt Exert Influence on Its Neighbors? : Astronomy & the Solar System
The asteroid belt exerts influence on its neighbors through a variety of things, like orbital resonance. Find out how the asteroid belt exerts influence on its neighbors with help from an experienced educator in this free video clip.
Expert: Eylene Pirez
Filmmaker: bjorn wilde
Series Description: The solar system is one of the most unique and interesting topics that we as humans have the pleasure of studying. Learn about astronomy and the stars with help from an experienced educator in this free video series.
Earth Ancestor Banished To Asteroid Belt?
Properties of asteroid Lutetia have been found to be similar to the original material that formed the Earth. The animation depicts what is thought to have caused its drastic change in orbit to now reside in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. To View More SPACE VIDEO - Go to: http://www.space.com/video/
Asteroid Discovery From 1980 - 2010
Video Created by Scott Manley, this is a view of the solar system showing the locations of all the asteroids starting in 1980, as asteroids are discovered they are added to the map and highlighted white so you can pick out the new ones.
The final colour of an asteroids indicates how closely it comes to the inner solar system.
Earth Crossers are Red
Earth Approachers (Perihelion less than 1.3AU) are Yellow
All Others are Green
Notice now the pattern of discovery follows the Earth around its orbit, most discoveries are made in the region directly opposite the Sun. You'll also notice some clusters of discoveries on the line between Earth and Jupiter, these are the result of surveys looking for Jovian moons. Similar clusters of discoveries can be tied to the other outer planets, but those are not visible in this video.
As the video moves into the mid 1990's we see much higher discovery rates as automated sky scanning systems come online. Most of the surveys are imaging the sky directly opposite the sun and you'll see a region of high discovery rates aligned in this manner.
At the beginning of 2010 a new discovery pattern becomes evident, with discovery zones in a line perpendicular to the Sun-Earth vector. These new observations are the result of the WISE (Widefield Infrared Survey Explorer) which is a space mission that's tasked with imaging the entire sky in infrared wavelengths.
The scale of the video at 1080P resolution is roughly 1million kilometers per pixel, and each second of video corresponds to 60 days.
Currently we have observed over half a million minor planets, and the discovery rates show no sign that we're running out of undiscovered objects, scientific estimates suggest that there are about a billion asteroids larger than 100metres (about the size of a football field) .
Orbital elements were taken from the 'astorb.dat' data created by Ted Bowell and associates at ftp://ftp.lowell.edu/pub/elgb/astorb.html
Music is 'Transgenic' by Trifonic: http://www.amazon.com/Emergence-Trifonic/dp/B0013MTJUQ/ - they're awesome guys, give them some love.
Check out todays asteroid map at http://szyzyg.arm.ac.uk/~spm/neo_map.html
Quite a few journalists, bloggers and tweeters are attributing this to NASA or Arecibo Observatory - while they do fine work they had nothing to do with this. If you write a story you can credit it to Scott Manley.
If you are needing a higher quality video or images for a specific purposes - education, news or just eye candy I can supply them on a case by case basis.
Thanks for the Interest!
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The asteroid belt is the region of the Solar System located roughly between the orbits of the planets Mars and Jupiter. It is occupied by numerous irregularly shaped bodies called asteroids or minor planets. The asteroid belt region is also termed the main belt to distinguish it from other concentrations of minor planets within the Solar System, such as the Kuiper belt and scattered disc.
More than half the mass of the main belt is contained in the four largest objects: 1 Ceres, 4 Vesta, 2 Pallas, and 10 Hygiea. All of these have mean diameters of more than 400 km, while Ceres, the main belt's only dwarf planet, is about 950 km in diameter. The remaining bodies range down to the size of a dust particle. The asteroid material is so thinly distributed that multiple unmanned spacecraft have traversed it without incident. Nonetheless, collisions between large asteroids do occur, and these can form an asteroid family whose members have similar orbital characteristics and compositions. Collisions also produce a fine dust that forms a major component of the zodiacal light. Individual asteroids within the main belt are categorized by their spectra, with most falling into three basic groups: carbonaceous (C-type), silicate (S-type), and metal-rich (M-type).
The asteroid belt formed from the primordial solar nebula as a group of planetesimals, the smaller precursors of the planets. Between Mars and Jupiter, however, gravitational perturbations from the giant planet imbued the planetesimals with too much orbital energy for them to accrete into a planet. Collisions became too violent, and instead of sticking together, the planetesimals shattered. As a result, most of the main belt's mass has been lost since the formation of the Solar System. Some fragments can eventually find their way into the inner Solar System, leading to meteorite impacts with the inner planets. Asteroid orbits continue to be appreciably perturbed whenever their period of revolution about the Sun forms an orbital resonance with Jupiter. At these orbital distances, a Kirkwood gap occurs as they are swept into other orbits.
the astronomer Johann Daniel Titius von Wittenburg noted an apparent pattern in the layout of the planets. If one began a numerical sequence at 0, then included 3, 6, 12, 24, 48, etc., doubling each time, and added four to each number and divided by 10, this produced a remarkably close approximation to the orbits of the known planets as measured in astronomical units. This pattern, now known as the Titius-Bode Law, predicted the semi-major axes of the six planets of the time (Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn) provided one allowed for a "gap" between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. In his footnote Titius declared, "But should the Lord Architect have left that space empty? Not at all".In 1768, the astronomer Johann Elert Bode made note of Titius's relationship in his Anleitung zur Kenntniss des gestirnten Himmels but did not credit Titius, which led many to refer to it as "Bode's law". When William Herschel discovered Uranus in 1781, the planet's position matched the law almost perfectly, leading astronomers to conclude that there had to be a planet between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.