Apollo astronaut has been forced to return camera to NASA

Apollo astronaut Edgar Mitchell has been forced to return to NASA the camera he used on the Moon.

[He had been allowed to keep the camera after his return in accordance with] a practice within the 1970’s astronaut office that allowed the Apollo astronauts to keep equipment that hadn’t been intended to return from the moon so long as the items did not exceed weight limitations and were approved by management.

Another fuzzy Dawn image?

July 9 Vesta image

Another image of Vesta from Dawn has been released. This image was taken on July 9 from a distance of 26,000 miles away. It is definitely an improvement over the previous image, with more small details becoming visible. However, I once again wonder about the softness of the image. Look at the limb of the planet. It is soft against the black sky. This is not what one would expect from perfectly focused camera.

Dawn goes into orbit around Vesta next week. We sure learn then for sure if there is a problem with its camera, or whether I am merely being a bit too nervous.