Solar System Chatter

Ceres in Detail

NASA has just released this false-color map of dwarf planet Ceres (right, click to enlarge), from the Dawn spacecraft. Right now Dawn is at an altitude of around 900 miles, but over the next few months it will descend to an orbit of just 230 miles high, where it will get an incredibly detailed view of the strange Ceres landscape. The mission team says that Ceres looks quite different than Vesta, the first dwarf planet that Dawn visited between 2011 and 2012. The spacecraft will continue to operate through mid-2016. Read our interview with Dawn mission director Marc Rayman here.

Heather Goss is the Departments Editor at Air & Space.

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asteroid, Ceres, Dawn