Lots of Bright Spots on Dwarf Planet Ceres
A view from 240 miles above a crater on the little planet Ceres shows more of that bright material that seems to underlie the surface and has surprised scientists since the Dawn spacecraft arrived at the object last March.
The Kupalo Crater is 16 miles wide and you can see the bright material along the crater walls. Current theories suggest it might be magnesium sulfate - a type of salt.
So far, there have been over 130 bright areas observed as the Dawn spacecraft has continued to lower its orbit. The current orbit at about 250 miles above the surface is the closest the craft will go.
By the way, Ceres is in the asteroid belt between Jupiter and Mars and is only 590 miles in diameter.
Late last year, NASA also released a movie of Ceres in false color, which better shows the different materials that make up the surface of the planet.