Johns Hopkins University’s Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous – Shoemaker (NEAR Shoemaker) robotic space probe was launched in 1996 to study the asteroid Eros. This picture is a mosaic of six pictures, stitched together and layered over a computer model of the asteroid’s shape. The NEAR Shoemaker probe was about 200 kilometers from Eros at the time of these photos. Several large craters are clearly visible. At the end of its mission in February 2001, the spacecraft landed on Eros.