4 Vesta

Vesta(4) VestaEquatorial troughsreal asteroid by that namesnowman cratersthe asteroid Vesta
Vesta (minor-planet designation: 4 Vesta) is one of the largest objects in the asteroid belt, with a mean diameter of 525 km.wikipedia
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Asteroid belt

main-beltmain beltmain-belt asteroid
Vesta (minor-planet designation: 4 Vesta) is one of the largest objects in the asteroid belt, with a mean diameter of 525 km. It was discovered by the German astronomer Heinrich Wilhelm Olbers on 29 March 1807 and is named after Vesta, the virgin goddess of home and hearth from Roman mythology. Because the asteroid Juno had been discovered in 1804, this made Vesta the fourth object to be identified in the region that is now known as the asteroid belt. Vesta is the second-most-massive and second-largest body in the asteroid belt, after the dwarf planet Ceres, and it contributes an estimated 9% of the mass of the asteroid belt.
About half the mass of the belt is contained in the four largest asteroids: Ceres, Vesta, Pallas, and Hygiea.

Dawn (spacecraft)

DawnDawn spacecraftDawn'' spacecraft
NASA's Dawn spacecraft entered orbit around Vesta on 16 July 2011 for a one-year exploration and left orbit on 5 September 2012 en route to its final destination, Ceres.
Dawn is a retired space probe launched by NASA in September 2007 with the mission of studying two of the three known protoplanets of the asteroid belt, Vesta and Ceres.

2 Pallas

Pallasasteroid Pallas
It is slightly larger than Pallas, though significantly more massive.
With an estimated 7% of the mass of the asteroid belt, it is the third-most-massive asteroid, being 10–30% less massive than Vesta.

List of exceptional asteroids

second-largestfourth-largest asteroidlargest asteroids
Vesta is the brightest asteroid visible from Earth.
Of those in the above list, only 4 Vesta, 19 Fortuna, 6 Hebe, 7 Iris and 9 Metis orbit there.

Planetary differentiation

differentiateddifferentiationdifferentiated body
Vesta is the only known remaining rocky protoplanet (with a differentiated interior) of the kind that formed the terrestrial planets.
The process of planetary differentiation has occurred on planets, dwarf planets, the asteroid 4 Vesta, and natural satellites (such as the Moon).

HED meteorite

HEDhowardite–eucrite–diogenitehowardite–eucrite–diogenite (HED) meteorites
Debris from these events has fallen to Earth as howardite–eucrite–diogenite (HED) meteorites, which have been a rich source of information about Vesta. There is a large collection of potential samples from Vesta accessible to scientists, in the form of over 1200 HED meteorites (Vestan achondrites), giving insight into Vesta's geologic history and structure.
These are all thought to have originated from the crust of the asteroid Vesta, their differences being due to different geologic histories of the parent rock.

Heinrich Wilhelm Matthias Olbers

OlbersH. W. OlbersHeinrich Olbers
Vesta (minor-planet designation: 4 Vesta) is one of the largest objects in the asteroid belt, with a mean diameter of 525 km. It was discovered by the German astronomer Heinrich Wilhelm Olbers on 29 March 1807 and is named after Vesta, the virgin goddess of home and hearth from Roman mythology.
Five years later, on March 29, 1807, he discovered the asteroid Vesta, which he allowed Carl Friedrich Gauss to name.

Terrestrial planet

terrestrial planetsrockyrocky planet
Vesta is the only known remaining rocky protoplanet (with a differentiated interior) of the kind that formed the terrestrial planets.
The rocky minor planet Vesta orbiting outside of Mars is less dense than Mars still at, 3.4 g·cm −3.

3 Juno

Junoasteroid
Because the asteroid Juno had been discovered in 1804, this made Vesta the fourth object to be identified in the region that is now known as the asteroid belt.
Juno was originally considered a planet, along with 1 Ceres, 2 Pallas, and 4 Vesta.

Phaeton (hypothetical planet)

Phaetondestroyed planeta planet which exploded
He proposed that the two objects were the remnants of a destroyed planet.
The discovery of the asteroid Juno by Karl Ludwig Harding and Vesta, by Olbers, buttressed the Olbers hypothesis.

Dwarf planet

dwarf planetsplanet
Vesta is the second-most-massive and second-largest body in the asteroid belt, after the dwarf planet Ceres, and it contributes an estimated 9% of the mass of the asteroid belt.
2 Pallas and 4 Vesta are rocky and are just below the limit.

Rheasilvia

Rheasilvia craterRheasilvia central peak
The Dawn science team named the younger, more prominent crater Rheasilvia, after the mother of Romulus and Remus and a mythical vestal virgin.
Rheasilvia is the most prominent surface feature on the asteroid Vesta and is thought to be an impact crater.

Protoplanet

planetary embryoplanetoidsproto-planet
Vesta is the only known remaining rocky protoplanet (with a differentiated interior) of the kind that formed the terrestrial planets.
In the inner Solar System, the three protoplanets to survive more-or-less intact are the asteroids Ceres, Pallas, and Vesta.

V-type asteroid

VV-typevestoid
It is estimated that the impact responsible excavated about 1% of the volume of Vesta, and it is likely that the Vesta family and V-type asteroids are the products of this collision.
A V-type asteroid or Vestoid is an asteroid whose spectral type is that of 4 Vesta.

46 Hestia

Hestia
In Greek, the name adopted was the Hellenic equivalent of Vesta, Hestia (4 Εστία); in English, that name is used for 46 Hestia (Greeks use the name "Hestia" for both, with the minor-planet numbers used for disambiguation).
This created a problem in Greek, where 4 Vesta also goes by the name Hestia.

Pluto

134340 Pluto(134340) Plutomass of Pluto
In Chinese, Vesta is called the 'hearth-god(dess) star', 灶神星, naming the asteroid for Vesta's role rather than literally transliterating her name into Chinese, as is done with other bodies discovered in modern times, including Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto.
As objects increasingly closer in size to Pluto were discovered in the region, it was argued that Pluto should be reclassified as one of the Kuiper belt objects, just as Ceres, Pallas, Juno and Vesta lost their planet status after the discovery of many other asteroids.

Veneneia

Veneneia is the second-largest crater on asteroid 4 Vesta, at 52°S latitude.

Vesta family

VestaVestianVestian asteroid
It is estimated that the impact responsible excavated about 1% of the volume of Vesta, and it is likely that the Vesta family and V-type asteroids are the products of this collision.
The cratering family is located in the inner asteroid belt in the vicinity of its namesake and principal body, 4 Vesta.

Astronomical symbols

astronomical symbolastronomicalastronomy
Upon its discovery, Vesta was, like Ceres, Pallas, and Juno before it, classified as a planet and given a planetary symbol.
The symbol for 4 Vesta was invented by German mathematician Carl Friedrich Gauss.

Minor planet designation

numberednumberingdesignation
Vesta (minor-planet designation: 4 Vesta) is one of the largest objects in the asteroid belt, with a mean diameter of 525 km. It was discovered by the German astronomer Heinrich Wilhelm Olbers on 29 March 1807 and is named after Vesta, the virgin goddess of home and hearth from Roman mythology.
This difficulty was addressed by Benjamin Apthorp Gould in 1851, who suggested numbering asteroids in their order of discovery, and placing this number in a circle as the symbol for the asteroid, such as ④ for the fourth asteroid, Vesta.

197 Arete

Every 18 years, the asteroid 197 Arete approaches within 0.04 AU of Vesta.
Every 18 years, this asteroid approaches within 0.04 AU of 4 Vesta.

Vesta (mythology)

Vestagoddess VestaVestal
Vesta (minor-planet designation: 4 Vesta) is one of the largest objects in the asteroid belt, with a mean diameter of 525 km. It was discovered by the German astronomer Heinrich Wilhelm Olbers on 29 March 1807 and is named after Vesta, the virgin goddess of home and hearth from Roman mythology.
4 Vesta, one of the largest objects in the asteroid belt

Achondrite

achondriticachondritesachondritic stony meteorite
There is a large collection of potential samples from Vesta accessible to scientists, in the form of over 1200 HED meteorites (Vestan achondrites), giving insight into Vesta's geologic history and structure.
Achondrites account for about 8% of meteorites overall, and the majority (about two thirds) of them are HED meteorites, possibly originating from the crust of asteroid 4 Vesta.

Claudia (crater)

Claudia
They corrected the pole, but also established a new prime meridian 4° from the center of Claudia, a sharply defined crater 700 meters across, which they say results in a more logical set of mapping quadrangles.
Claudia is a small (700 meter) crater that defines the prime meridian of asteroid 4 Vesta in the coordinate system used by the Dawn mission team, NASA, and the IAU Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature, though it is not accepted by the IAU as a whole.

17 Thetis

Thetis
More refined estimates followed, and in 2001 the perturbations of 17 Thetis were used to estimate the mass of Vesta as 1.31 solar masses.
The mass of Thetis has been calculated from perturbations by 4 Vesta and 11 Parthenope.