Dawn’s Look at Ceres

The Dawn spacecraft returned this very nice image of the dwarf planet Ceres. It features Occator Crater and Ahuna Mons.

Ahuna Mons is the tallest mountain on Ceres, some 4 km / 2.5 miles high, it is visible on the right limb of the planet. Occator Crater is hard to miss with the bright evaporite deposits at the crater’s center and along the floor.

According to NASA both features are relatively young, share a similar composition — different from Ceres’ average composition — and hint at recent internal activity in the dwarf planet. Cere’s is a mysterious place.

Dawn took this image during its third extended-mission science orbit (XMO3), from a distance of about 4,700 miles (7,500 kilometers) above the surface of Ceres. The image resolution is about 2,300 feet (700 meters) per pixel.

Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

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