This image from NASA's Dawn mission reveals the creeping dawn over the north pole of the giant asteroid Vesta now that sunlight is shining over that area. The mosaic is composed of 5 images obtained by Dawn's framing camera on Aug.26, 2012, while Dawn was at an altitude of about 4,000 miles (6,000 kilometers).
Dawn's north pole is centered in this image and still in the dark.
The mosaic shows two large impact craters, one relatively fresh with no smaller impacts on its floor and a second larger and older one with many smaller impacts on its floor.
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 Dawn is online at http://www.nasa.gov/dawn and http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov.