NASA Telescope Set to Finish Survey

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - A telescope made by Utah State
University's Space Dynamics Lab for NASA is on track to complete
its first sky survey.

So far, the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer - or WISE -
project has discovered 25,000 asteroids.

The lab's WISE program manager John Elwell says the project has
been exciting.

Elwell says WISE has produced 1.3 million images, including
distant galaxies and brown dwarf stars, as well as 100,000
asteroids. The asteroids mainly occupy an area between Mars and
Jupiter. About 90 of these space rocks travel "near" Earth,
meaning roughly 30 million miles from the planet.

Elwell says the first sky map was set for completion on
Saturday. Over the next three months, WISE will map half of the sky
again so astronomers can see what's changed.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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