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Asteroid families

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Typical orbits for inner solar system asteroids
This artist's impression shows how the families of asteroids follow the orbits of their prototypes. Amors cross Mars’ orbit but do not cross Earth’s. It is the Apollo asteroids that cross Earth’s orbit. There are also the Atens. These asteroids spend most of their time inside Earth’s orbit, crossing it briefly before disappearing back into the glare of the Sun.
Credits: ESA 2002. Illustration by Medialab
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