Click on the image for the animation
This animation shows NASA's Dawn spacecraft flying above Vesta, based on an artist's concept of the surface of the giant asteroid.
The dissolve into the second animation shows the Dawn spacecraft flying over a real image of Vesta's surface taken by the framing camera on July 24, 2011
Dawn entered orbit around Vesta on July 15, and will spend a year orbiting the body. After that, the next stop on its itinerary will be an encounter with the dwarf planet Ceres.
The Dawn mission to Vesta and Ceres is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. It is a project of the Discovery Program, managed by NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala. UCLA is responsible for overall Dawn mission science. Orbital Sciences Corporation of Dulles, Va., designed and built the Dawn spacecraft. The German Aerospace Center, the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, the Italian Space Agency and the Italian National Astrophysical Institute are part of the mission team. More information about Dawn is online at http://www.nasa.gov/dawn.