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File:Divalia Fossa PIA15673.jpg



Divalia Fossa on the limb of 4 Vesta.

Original Caption Released with Image:

This image from NASA's Dawn mission shows huge grooves on the giant asteroid Vesta that were the result of mega impacts at the south pole. As Dawn sent the first close-up images of Vesta back to Earth in July 2011, scientists immediately noticed numerous grooves, as if created by a gigantic plow. This image shows two grooves in the Divalia Fossa system, running parallel to the lower edge of the image.

The majority of these grooves extend along the equator, but a second group -- inclined with respect to the equator -- have been identified in the northern hemisphere. These parallel trenches are usually several hundred miles (kilometers) long, up to 9 miles (15 kilometers) wide and more than a half mile (1 kilometer) deep. They are the result of two large asteroid impacts far in the southern hemisphere, demonstrating that impact events that occurred hundreds of miles (kilometers) apart caused shocks throughout Vesta and altered its surface.

The scene is an artificially generated oblique view of the grooves (or troughs) that run along Vesta's equator. The image was rendered from a global mosaic of Vesta processed from thousands of individual images obtained by the framing camera between January and April 2012. The altitude was approximately 130 miles (210 kilometers) above Vesta's surface. The image resolution is about 70 feet (20 meters) per pixel.






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