SS: our (or i should say someone else’s) asteroid theory is starting to run into problems. Ceres is supposed to be an asteroid yet we find it has water plumes and an atmosphere. this does not bode well for some of current theories. eventually i will start to apply my polestar theories to this object. however for now i am going to collect data on this moon. obviously the white spot is very interesting and i for one cannot wait to see it close and learn more about it.

Water Plume ‘Unequivocally’ Detected at Dwarf Planet Ceres - JAN 22, 2014 “This is the first time water vapor has been unequivocally detected on Ceres or any other object in the asteroid belt and provides proof that Ceres has an icy surface and an atmosphere,” said Michael Küppers of the European Space Agency in Spain and lead author of a paper published today (Jan. 22) in the journal Nature.

NASA’s Dawn Spacecraft Captures Best-Ever View of Dwarf Planet January 27, 2015 At 43 pixels wide, the new images are more than 30 percent higher in resolution than those taken by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope in 2003 and 2004 at a distance of over 150 million miles. The resolution is higher because Dawn is traveling through the solar system to Ceres, while Hubble remains fixed in Earth orbit. The new Dawn images come on the heels of initial navigation images taken Jan. 13 that reveal a white spot on the dwarf planet and the suggestion of craters. Hubble images also had glimpsed a white spot on the dwarf planet, but its nature is still unknown.

Ceres (minor-planet designation 1 Ceres) /ˈsɪəriːz/[17] is a dwarf planet located in the asteroid belt, which lies between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. It is composed of rock and ice, is 950 km (590 mi) in diameter, and contains a third of the mass of the asteroid belt. It is the largest asteroid and the only dwarf planet in the inner Solar System. It was the first asteroid to be discovered, on January 1, 1801 by Giuseppe Piazzi in Palermo, though at first it was considered to be a planet. From Earth, the apparent magnitude of Ceres ranges from 6.7 to 9.3, and hence even at its brightest it is too dim to be seen with the naked eye except under extremely dark skies.

In ancient Roman religion, Ceres (/ˈkɪəriːz/, Latin: Cerēs) was a goddess of agriculture, grain crops, fertility and motherly relationships.[1] She was originally the central deity in Rome’s so-called plebeian or Aventine Triad, then was paired with her daughter Proserpina in what Romans described as “the Greek rites of Ceres”. Her seven-day April festival of Cerealia included the popular Ludi Ceriales (Ceres’ games).

Zoomed out — PIA19173 Ceres appears sharper than ever at 43 pixels across, a higher resolution than images of Ceres taken by the NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope in 2003 and 2004.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL

This image, taken 147,000 miles (237,000 kilometers) from Ceres on January 25, 2015 by NASA’s Dawn spacecraft, is part of a series of views representing the best look so far at the dwarf planet. The image is 43 pixels across, representing a higher resolution than images of Ceres taken by the Hubble Space Telescope in 2003 and 2004. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA)

This artist’s concept shows NASA’s Dawn spacecraft heading toward the dwarf planet Ceres. Dawn spent nearly 14 months orbiting Vesta, the second most massive object in the main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, from 2011 to 2012. It is heading towards Ceres, the largest member of the asteroid belt. When Dawn arrives, it will be the first spacecraft to go into orbit around two destinations in our solar system beyond Earth. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

For story suggestions please contact tips@nma.com.tw NASA’s Dawn spacecraft is currently on its way to the asteroid belt where it will rendezvous Ceres, its largest celestial body. (Reuters)

Dawn spacecraft set to unlock secrets of dwarf planet Ceres