Home > Asteroid, Ephemeris Program, Meteorites > 03/30/2015 – Ephemeris – The importance of meteorites and asteroids

03/30/2015 – Ephemeris – The importance of meteorites and asteroids

March 30, 2015

Ephemeris for Monday, March 30th.  The Sun will rise at 7:27.  It’ll be up for 12 hours and 39 minutes, setting at 8:07.   The Moon, 3 days past first quarter, will set at 5:33 tomorrow morning.

On Friday the 3rd Joe Brooks will be giving a talk at the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society on meteorites.  That will be at 8 p.m. at Northwestern Michigan College’s Rogers Observatory.  NASA has the Dawn spacecraft now settling into orbit of the largest asteroid Ceres.  It is the asteroid belt that is the source of meteorites.  Meteorites are either pieces of destroyed protoplanets due to collisions in the asteroid belt or primitive objects like carbonaceous chondrites pristine that date back to 4.567 billion years ago, the formation of the solar system.  Meteorites tend to be contaminated by the environment.  That’s why samples of asteroids will be so valuable for planetary defense and understanding the origin of the solar system.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan.  They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Vesta as Dawn headed off to Ceres.

Looking back at Vesta as Dawn headed off to Ceres. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCAL/MPS/DLR/IDA

Ceres 2/19/15

The bright spot is two. Picture taken February 19, 2015 from 29,000 miles (46,700 km). Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA.

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