Bright Spots

Bright Spots

NASA’s Dawn spacecraft captured these close-ups of Occator, a crater on the dwarf planet Ceres. About 90 kilometers (60 miles) across, it contains the brightest spots on the dwarf planet. Scientists believe the spots contain salts, specifically a magnesium sulfate called hexahydrite.

Launched in 2007, Dawn arrived at Ceres in March 2015. About 940 kilometers (584 miles) wide, Ceres is the largest object in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. It’s believed to have a rocky core and a thick icy mantle.

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