Okay, we’re just going to say it: From its mysterious glowing patches to its two-faced mountain, dwarf-planet Ceres is plain weird. And with the latest fly-over look at its surface from NASA, things are getting even stranger.
Dwarf planet Ceres’ bright spots are perhaps the strangest of all its features. Now we’re finally in a low-enough altitude to get an unprecedented close-up look—and what we’re seeing may only have deepened the mystery.
The Dawn spacecraft has been hard at work orbiting Ceres, and over the last week, it’s sent back some stunning images of our closest dwarf planet.
NASA has released a new image from the DAWN Spacecraft orbiting Ceres, depicting the southern hemisphere of the dwarf planet.
On the 23rd and 24th of January, 1930, a young astronomer working in Flagstaff, Arizona, scanned a small patch of the night sky. He was taking pictures of star positions, looking for anomalies that would signal movement somewhere at the edge of the solar system. He took the pictures then set them aside, not realizing…
Returned from the lowest cruising altitude over the dwarf planet yet, these shots of Ceres are incredibly detailed—and could even show us some surprises.
Ceres has been home to a lot of strange sights for scientists to wonder over—but nothing has been as confounding as the presence of several strange glowing areas on the planet’s surface. Here’s what they are—and something new that helped confirm it.
Water ice from a subterranean ocean? Giant salt deposits from an alien mining operation? Since March, dwarf planet Ceres’ bright spots have mystified scientists, dazzled space nerds, and sparked all manner of wild speculation. A study published today in Nature has the answers we’ve been waiting for. Ceres, you are one…
The Dawn Spacecraft is still orbiting Ceres and sending back some fantastic images. The latest are images taken of the dwarf planet’s north and south poles.
Ceres’ bright spots have been a winking mystery for months, but NASA finally thinks it’s solved the riddle: No, we’re not looking at a giant alien ice rink. More likely, enormous piles of salt.
‘Tis the season for dwarf planets with an impending flood of Pluto flyby data and Dawn just about to point its spectrometer at the weird white spots on Ceres. Add in ocean floor explorations, a pair of weights in perpetual free-fall, and a rash of rocket launches and we just know this year is going out in a bang of…
We once considered the Sun a planet, and it took finding Uranus to decide that moons should really be their own category of thing. These are all the places in our solar system that were once planets—but now have far more suitable names.
The tallest mountain on Ceres is a split-toned creature that would be at home in Alaska. Explore it, and the still-mysterious white spots in Occator Crater in the latest flyover animation of the dwarf planet.
Yesterday, we looked at an interactive infographic on the relative orbits of everything in the solar system. Today, let’s compare the planets to one another. This site shows us how all of the solar system’s planets (and Pluto) stack up.
NASA has just released a stunning new topographic map of Ceres, the other dwarf planet astronomers are getting to study up close and personal this summer. Unlike Pluto’s freakishly smooth and youthful surface, Ceres’s exterior is riddled with craters, creating a battered old landscape of peaks and valleys.
As NASA’s Dawn mission continues to circle dwarf planet Ceres, we’re getting better and more detailed images of the planet’s mysterious bright spots. And yet, science is no closer to understanding what’s making this far-off planet glow.
NASA's Dawn spacecraft has spent a month in the shadow of Ceres. But now, the highest resolution images of the dwarf planet to date reveal its north pole.
Over the next few months, NASA's Dawn spacecraft will be slowly spiraling down toward Ceres, a dwarf planet out in the asteroid belt. Ceres' gravity and Dawn's ion drive will work together to pull the spacecraft into a tighter and tighter orbit, which is rather mesmerizing traced out in full like this.
The Dawn spacecraft has done it: it is now taking the highest-resolution images of the dwarf planet Ceres that have ever been seen. Not only is this new image better than the historic Hubble Space Telescope image, but every new release will be better than the one before until it arrives in orbit this March.