Solar System Chatter

Fly Over an Asteroid

Last year, NASA’s Dawn spacecraft spent almost three months mapping asteroid Ceres from an altitude of 900 miles. The mission team at the German Aerospace Center created a video showing all the details of the asteroid’s features, like the crater Occator, where the bright spots are located (scientists are now fairly certain those are created by a type of salt from a long-evaporated subsurface water source). Dawn has since gone down into a lower orbit around Ceres, just 240 miles from the surface.

Heather Goss is the Departments Editor at Air & Space.

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asteroid, Ceres, Dawn