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Radar Imaging of Near Earth Asteroids
Radar images of an asteroid.

The von Kármán Lecture Series: 9 & 10 May 2013

Radar is a very powerful astronomical technique for studying the physical properties and refining the orbits of near-Earth asteroids. The world's only two radar telescopes for imaging asteroids are at Arecibo, Puerto Rico, and Goldstone, Calif. These telescopes can image near-Earth asteroids with resolutions as fine as several meters, which greatly exceeds the finest resolution available from any ground- or space-based optical telescope (even the Hubble Space Telescope). Radar images reveal an object's size, shape, rotation state, and features on its surface such as craters, ridges and even large boulders, and have discovered that 1/6 of near-Earth asteroids larger than 200 m in diameter are double systems that revolve around each other, like miniature versions of the Earth and moon, and that 10% of near-Earth asteroids look like gigantic peanuts, while others resemble muffins and potatoes!

Speaker: Dr. Lance Benner, Research Scientist, Jet Propulsion Laboratory


  • Thursday, May 9, 2013, 7 p.m.

The von Kármán Auditorium at JPL
4800 Oak Grove Drive
Pasadena, Calif.

  • Friday, May 10, 2013, 7 p.m.

The Vosloh Forum at Pasadena City College
1570 East Colorado Blvd.
Pasadena, Calif.

Webcast: We offer two options to view the live streaming of our webcast on Thursday:

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Last Updated: 23 April 2013

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