Stunning close-up views of asteroid 433 Eros from the descending NEAR Shoemaker spacecraft get top billing in a new movie from NASA's Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) mission. The minute-long movie, released today on the NEAR Web site at http://near.jhuapl.edu covers the final moments of NEAR's yearlong orbit at Eros. NEAR Shoemaker made history on Feb. 12, 2001, when the orbiter became the first spacecraft to land and then operate on the surface of an asteroid. NASA extended the mission until Feb. 28, 2001, so the intrepid spacecraft could gather additional data on the 21-mile-long space rock.
The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.
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