NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
This view of the asteroid Gaspra was taken by the Galileo spacecraft on October 29, 1991, from a distance of about 10,000 miles. This image shows Gaspra in approximately true colour; the surface is covered with rocks that are somewhat less grey than those on Earth's moon. This was the first time that a spacecraft made a fly-by of an asteroid. Gaspra is an irregular body with dimensions of about 12.5 x 7.5 x 7 miles. Its surface reflects approximately 20 percent of the sunlight striking it. Gaspra is classified as an S-type asteroid and is likely composed of metal-rich silicates and perhaps blocks of pure metal.
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