NASA’s Lucy spacecraft, on a mission to observe Jupiter’s Trojan asteroids, recently made an unexpected discovery.
- It found that the main belt asteroid Dinkinesh, which it was set to fly by, is actually a binary system of two asteroids bound together.
- Preliminary analysis suggests that the larger asteroid is about 790 meters wide, while the smaller one is approximately 220 meters in size.
- An asteroid is a rocky, metallic, or icy minor planet that orbits within the inner Solar System.
- Asteroids are smaller than planets but larger than meteoroids. They can range in size from 1-meter rocks to a dwarf planet almost 1000 km in diameter.
- Asteroids are remnants left over from the early formation of our solar system about 4.6 billion years ago.
- Most of them can be found orbiting our Sun between Mars and Jupiter within the main asteroid belt.
- Asteroids are also known as minor planets or planetoids.
- The larger forms of asteroids are also known as planetoids.