Tempel 1, as Seen by Two Spacecraft These two images show the different views of comet Tempel 1 seen by NASA’s Deep Impact spacecraft (left) and NASA’s Stardust spacecraft (right). Two craters, about 300 meters (1,000 feet) in diameter, help scientists locate the area hit by the impactor released by Deep Impact in July 2005. The dashed lines correlate the features. Stardust approached the comet from a different angle on Feb. 14, 2011. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Maryland/Cornell

NASA’s aging and amazing Stardust space probe has at last discovered the human made crater created on Comet Tempel 1 in 2005 by the history making cosmic smash up with NASA’s Deep Impact penetrator. Stardust streaked past the comet on Feb. 14 at 10.9 km/sec, or 24,000 MPH, and succeeded in briefly photographing the crater as it approached within 178 km (111 mi) during the fleeting moments of the probes closest approach.

The intentional celestial collision in 2005 was designed to violently unleash the buried remnants of the early solar system into an enormous ejecta cloud of dusty debris that scientists could sift for clues to help unlock the secrets of how we all formed and evolved some 4.5 Billion Years ago.(…) Read the rest of NASA’s Stardust Discovers Human made Deep Impact Crater on Comet Tempel 1 (1,072 words)

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(C) Ken Kremer for Universe Today, 2011. | Permalink | 3 comments | Add to Post

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