UCLA-led NASA mission has provided closest ever look at dwarf planet Ceres.
The photos were produced by the spacecraft Dawn, which is now observing Ceres from 2,700 miles above its surface; NASA has also produced a one-minute video animation that sheds new light on this mysterious and heavily cratered world.
Everything they learn from Ceres will be absolutely new, said principal investigator Christopher Russell, adding that they approach it in awe and almost total ignorance.
Dawn’s visit to Ceres, which is scheduled to last more than a year, began on March 6.
The Dawn flight team and the Dawn science team are high achievers, but the spacecraft itself is the highest achiever, Russell added.