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Snapshots of the past

Rosetta spacecraft returns images of asteroid 21 Lutetia

1:52pm, July 12, 2010

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New images from space reveal a cratered asteroid that is likely a remnant of the early formation of the solar system, the European Space Agency reports. The ESA’s Rosetta Orbiter beamed back the first close-ups of 21 Lutetia, a large asteroid in the main asteroid belt, as the craft passed by July 10 on its way to a distant comet.

Rosetta came within 3,162 kilometers of the asteroid while moving at a speed of 15 kilometers per second, completing the flyby in just one minute. High-resolution images from the Rosetta’s OSIRIS instrument revealed details as sma

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