Today, the deep-space asteroid-studying spaceprobe Dawn was successfully launched on schedule, satisfying the requirements of DAWNOK. After a few false starts, NASA's mission to study the origins of the solar system is now officially under way, headed for
the main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. The unmanned
spacecraft will begin its exploration of Vesta in 2011, and Ceres in
2015. By comparing the two asteroids, scientists hope to learn more
about how the solar system formed and why Vesta and Ceres failed to become full-size planets.