Ceres South Polar Region

The Dawn spacecraft returned this image from the lowest altitude it has reached so far only 385 km / 240 miles away. Dawn’s caption: This view of Ceres, taken by NASA’s Dawn spacecraft on December 10, shows an area in southern hemisphere of the dwarf planet. It is located at approximately 85.6 south longitude, 176.6 […]

Ceres Bright Spots Likely Ice

It appears the mystery of the bright spots may have been solved! From the original caption: This map of Ceres, made from images taken by NASA’s Dawn spacecraft, shows the locations of about 130 bright areas across the dwarf planet’s surface, highlighted in blue. Most of these bright areas are associated with craters. Three insets […]

Latest Image of Ceres

Here is the latest image from the Dawn spacecraft orbiting the dwarf planet Ceres. The image was taken from a distance of 1,470 km / 915 miles with the Framing camera giving a resolution of 140 meters / 450 feet. Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

Weird Mountain on Ceres

Here’s a better look at that weird mountain on Ceres .  It looks even more like it was sculpted in this view from 1470 km / 915 miles taken from the Dawn spacecraft than it did the first time I saw it. The mountain is 6 km / 4 mi tall and there is a […]

Tour of Ceres

A look at a couple of the features on Ceres including the crater Occator with those bright spots (see Inside Occator Crater) and a mountain with bright streaks. Also if you have 3D glasses there is a rotation segment at the end. Video

Ceres Elevation Map

From JPL: The color scale extends 3.7 miles (6 kilometers) below the surface in purple to 3.7 miles (6 kilometers) above the surface in brown. The brightest features (those appearing nearly white) — including the well-known bright spots within a crater in the northern hemisphere — are simply reflective areas, and do not represent elevation. […]

Ceres Orbital Image 11

Here is another image of the mysterious bright spots on Ceres. This image was taken by the Framing Camera on the Dawn Spacecraft. The image was taken from a distance of 4,400 km / 2,700 miles with a resolution of 410 meters / 1,400 feet per pixel. What are those spots? Nobody knows for sure […]

Ceres Fly Over Animation

A new animation of Ceres fly over was made from images taken on NASA’s Dawn spacecraft’s first mapping run. These are the same images you’ve seen here, just more of them. The altitude varied from 13,600 km / 8,400 miles down to 5,100 km / 3,200 miles. Keep in mind vertical dimensions are exaggerated by […]

More Ceres

  A new image of Ceres was released, this one taken on 7 May 2015 from a distance of 13,600 km / 8,400 miles. I just love this image, the variable terrain is wonderful. The bright crater at the top looks like there is bright material (ices?) excavated out from an impact, yet a close […]

Ceres Up Close

We’re starting to get great detail from Dawn and it’s going to get better. This image gets us to a resolution of about 480 meters (1,600 feet) per pixel. The image was taken on 23 May 2015 from just 5,100 km (3,200 miles) away. According to the NASA view shows numerous secondary craters, those made […]