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Dawn probe Instruments and vehicles

Dawn probe Instruments and vehicles

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The Dawn space probe was launched into space by NASA in order to examine the dwarf planet Ceres and the asteroid Vesta. Both objects are located in the asteroid belt between the planets of Mars and Jupiter. It is run by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Its launch was made on September 27, 2007.

The Dawn probe explored the asteroid Vesta during 2011 and 2012, and in December 2015 it already flew over the dwarf planet Ceres. Dawn was scheduled for launch by a Delta 7925-H rocket, which took off from Cape Canaveral's 17-B launch pad.

The Dawn spacecraft is made of aluminum and composite graphite, and has a weight of 747.1 kilograms. Its core is a composite graphite cylinder. It has two wings of photovoltaic panels mounted on opposite sides of the ship. It also has a satellite dish in the front of the ship, in the same plane as the solar panels.

Dawn incorporates three other antennas, a 5 meter long arm that carries the magnetometer and various scientific instruments, such as star trackers, camera, mapping spectrometer, laser altimeter, a Gamma ray spectrometer and a neutron spectrometer. The ship is powered by photovoltaic solar energy thanks to two solar panels.

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