An image of the asteroid Gaspra.
Click on image for full size
It's Asteroid Time!
News story originally written on March 17, 1998
Have you ever been on an Easter egg hunt? Well some people hunt for things other than eggs! NASA astronomers Robin Evans and Karl Stapelfeldt have hunted through 28,000 Hubble telescope images. What did they find? About 100 small asteroids
. These asteroids are rocks that orbit between Mars and Jupiter in an area called the asteroid belt.
We need to know about asteroids because some of them come very close to the Earth (and could hit the Earth if they came any closer!). An asteroid discovered just last December (named 1997 XF11) is predicted to have a close encounter with the Earth in just 30 years. (How old will you be then?) This asteroid will pass close to the Earth, but it is in no danger of hitting the Earth.
Shop Windows to the Universe Science Store!
Our online store
includes issues of NESTA's quarterly journal, The Earth Scientist
, full of classroom activities on different topics in Earth and space science, ranging from seismology
, rocks and minerals
, and Earth system science
You might also be interested in:
It was another exciting and frustrating year for the space science program. It seemed that every step forward led to one backwards. Either way, NASA led the way to a great century of discovery. Unfortunately,...more
The Space Shuttle Discovery lifted off from Kennedy Space Center on October 29th at 2:19 p.m. EST. The sky was clear and the weather was great. This was the America's 123rd manned space mission. A huge...more
Scientists found a satellite orbiting the asteroid, Eugenia. This is the second one ever! A special telescope allows scientists to look through Earth's atmosphere. The first satellite found was Dactyl....more
The United States wants Russia to put the service module in orbit! The module is part of the International Space Station. It was supposed to be in space over 2 years ago. Russia just sent supplies to the...more
A coronal mass ejection (CME) happened on the Sun last month. The material that was thrown out from this explosion passed the ACE spacecraft. ACE measured some exciting things as the CME material passed...more
Trees and plants are a very important part of this Earth. Trees and plants are nature's air conditioning because they help keep our Earth cool. On a summer day, walking bare-foot on the sidewalk burns,...more
There is something special happening in the night sky. Through mid-May, you will be able to see five planets at the same time! This doesn't happen very often, so you won't want to miss this. Use the links...more