Mysterious bright spot on the Ceres, not ice, but salt
Pseudo color image on the Ceres Occator crater, according to the different chemical composition.Photo credit: NASA/JPL - Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA
Using NASA's Dawn the data sent back (Dawn) detector, two new studies reveal the Ceres (Ceres) for a long time some of the hidden secret, including many scattered on the surface of the dwarf planet mystery spots actually was.
In one study, scientists determine these bright material is some kind of salt.A second study was detected clay rich in ammonia, which poses challenges to the formation of Ceres theory.
Mysterious bright spot
Ceres has more than 130 bright spot, the vast majority of related to impact craters.The Max Planck institute in Germany Andreas na, the institute of the solar system (Andreas Nathues), according to a study led by these bright material consistent with some six water magnesium sulfate.This is a different type of magnesium sulfate, similar to the Epsom salt of the earth's (Epsom salt).
He, and his colleagues studied the dawn on the camera to photograph, found that these areas are rich in salt, left over from the past after water ice sublimation.Asteroids, they say, is the mixture of ice and salt out of the grouts.
She said, "these bright spots on Ceres global distribution show that the planet's surface under a stratum containing salt water ice."
Impact craters in the fog
The study authors said that the average diameter of 940 kilometers of Ceres, the surface is mostly dark, brightness like fresh asphalt.Scattered around the Ceres, on the surface of a bright spot, brightness is varied, the most bright spots of about 50% of the sunlight.However, there is no clear to detect water ice on the Ceres.To fix this problem, need higher resolution data.
Occator crater, combined with 3 d terrain data perspective, shows the crater topography.Photo credit: NASA/JPL - Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA
The brightest of Ceres material in a crater called Occator inside.Occator crater diameter of 90 kilometers, it in the middle of the pit covered with bright material, about 10 km wide, about 500 meters deep.There are several dark stripes, may be a crack, crosses from the pits.Once in the middle of the 500 meters high mountain ruins can still see.
According to Occator crater steep mountain and the number of landslide debris, scientists speculate that it should be the youngest Ceres geological characteristics.Dawn mission scientists estimate that about 78 million years age.
The study authors said the Occator crater appears to show some of the photos. There were diffuse fog near the surface of the fill the bottom of the crater.Perhaps with the herschel space observatory in 2014 on the Ceres observed the discovery of water vapor.The study authors, said that fog see