Where does the asteroid belt get its name
The asteroid material is so thinly distributed that numerous unmanned spacecraft have traversed it without incident. Today, Ceres, comprises one-third of the mass of the whole asteroid belt. Asteroid mining Asteroids in fiction Colonization of the asteroids Debris disk List of asteroids in astrology List of exceptional asteroids.
Dawn reached Vesta in and remained there for over a year before traveling on to reach Ceres in It will remain in orbit around the dwarf planet until the end of its mission. While most of the asteroid belt is made up of rocky objects, Ceres is an icy body. Hints of organic material spotted by Dawn suggest that it may have formed farther out in the solar system before landing in the belt.
While the organics have only been seen on the surface, that doesn't mean more material might lie on the dwarf planet.
The Main Belt lies between Mars and Jupiter, roughly two to four times the Earth-sun distance, and spans a region about million miles across. Objects in the belt are divided into eight subgroups named after the main asteroids in each group. Although Hollywood often displays ships making close calls through asteroid belts, the trip is generally uneventful. A number of spacecraft have safely traveled through the asteroid belt without incident, including NASA's New Horizons mission to Pluto.
Within in the asteroid belt are relatively empty regions known as Kirkwood gaps. These gaps correspond to orbital resonances with Jupiter. The gas giant's gravitational pull keeps these regions far emptier than the rest of the belt.
In other resonances, the asteroids can be more concentrated.
Johann Titius, an 18th-century German astronomer, noted a mathematical pattern in the layout of the planets and used it to predict the existence of one between Mars and Jupiter. Astronomers scoured the heavens in search of this missing body. In25 astronomers formed a group known as the Celestial Policeeach searching 15 degrees of the Zodiac for the missing planet.
Skirting the inner edge of the belt ranging between 1. They are named after the main member, Hungaria ; the group contains at least 52 named asteroids. The Hungaria group is separated from the main body by the 4: Some members belong to the Mars-crossing category of asteroids, and gravitational perturbations by Mars are likely a factor in reducing the total population of this group. Another high-inclination group in the inner part of the asteroid belt is the Phocaea family. These are composed primarily of S-type asteroids, whereas the neighboring Hungaria family includes some E-types.
Skirting the outer edge of the asteroid belt is the Cybele grouporbiting between 3. These have a 7: The Hilda family orbit between 3.
There are few asteroids beyond 4. Some asteroid families have formed recently, in astronomical terms.
The Karin Cluster apparently formed about 5. More recently, the Datura cluster appears to have formed about thousand years ago from a collision with a main-belt asteroid. The age estimate is based on the probability of the members having their current orbits, rather than from any physical evidence. However, this cluster may have been a source for some zodiacal dust material.
The first spacecraft to traverse the asteroid belt was Pioneer 10which entered the region on 16 July At the time there was some concern that the debris in the belt would pose a hazard to the spacecraft, but it has since been safely traversed by 12 spacecraft without incident. Pioneer 11Voyagers 1 and 2 and Ulysses passed through the belt without imaging any asteroids. Most belt asteroids imaged to date have come from brief flyby opportunities by probes headed for other targets.
Asteroids: Fun Facts and Information About Asteroids
Only the DawnNEAR and Hayabusa missions have studied asteroids for a protracted period in orbit and at the surface. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For the album by Velvet Chain, see Asteroid Belt album. Definition of planet and List of minor planets.
Fragment of the Allende meteoritea carbonaceous chondrite that fell to Earth in Mexico in Asteroid mining Asteroids in fiction Colonization of the asteroids Debris disk List of asteroids in astrology List of exceptional asteroids.
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Asteroid Belt objects are made of rock and stone. The Asteroid Belt contains billions and billions of asteroids.
Asteroid Belt: Facts & Formation
Some asteroids in the Belt are quite large, but most range in size down to pebbles. We know of at least 7, asteroids. The Asteroid Belt may contain many objects, but they are spread out over a huge area of space. This has allowed spacecraft to move through this region without hitting anything.
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