This 3-D image, called an anaglyph, shows degraded craters in Vesta's northern hemisphere. To create this anaglyph two differently colored images are superimposed with an offset to create depth. When viewed through red-blue glasses this anaglyph shows a 3-D view of Vesta's surface. The depth effect in this anaglyph, derived from topography differences, was calculated from the shape model of Vesta. The three fresh craters in the center of the image are evident whether the image is viewed with or without red-blue glasses. But the five much larger, very degraded craters, which the fresher craters are superimposed onto, are significantly more evident when viewed through red-blue glasses. This is an illustration of the importance of looking at data in three dimensions when possible.
The images used to generate the anaglyph are located in Vesta's Gegania quadrangle and the center is 12 degrees north latitude, 44 degrees east longitude. NASA's Dawn spacecraft obtained this image with its framing camera on Jul. 24, 2011. This image was taken through the camera's clear filter. The distance to the surface of Vesta is 5,200 kilometers (3,231 miles) and the image has a resolution of about 485 meters (1591 feet) per pixel. This image was acquired during the approach phase of the mission.
The Dawn mission to Vesta and Ceres is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington D.C. UCLA is responsible for overall Dawn mission science. The Dawn framing cameras have been developed and built under the leadership of the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany, with significant contributions by DLR German Aerospace Center, Institute of Planetary Research, Berlin, and in coordination with the Institute of Computer and Communication Network Engineering, Braunschweig. The Framing Camera project is funded by the Max Planck Society, DLR, and NASA/JPL.
More information about the Dawn mission is online at http://www.nasa.gov/dawn and http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov.