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Author Topic: Why No More CERES Images?  (Read 1994 times)

Offline Teakhat

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Why No More CERES Images?
« on: 10/05/2015 12:18:13 »
Am I the only one that is wondering what ever became of Dawn's mission? Ya know...photos of Ceres...good ones. Now? Zip......... :-\


 

Offline chiralSPO

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Re: Why No More CERES Images?
« Reply #1 on: 10/05/2015 13:52:55 »
I have also been searching for newer, better images, without much success. NASA has posted some here about 3 weeks ago: http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/spaceimages/details.php?id=PIA19064

This journal (http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/blog/2015/4/getting-down-to-science-at-ceres) some more recent info, but I think they are holding out on us.

I don't think there is anything sinister going on, any scientist wants the opportunity to analyze their hard-won data before releasing it to the public (including competition and critics). That they are taking their time suggests to me (as an optimist) that there is much to analyze, and that it is not perfectly straightforward. It could also be that there are some technical problems that they don't want to make public, but since they appear to be fairly open about slip-ups (like one that delayed the most recent part of the mission by a day), I doubt this is the case.

I would give it another few weeks...
 

Offline Teakhat

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Re: Why No More CERES Images?
« Reply #2 on: 11/05/2015 07:27:31 »
I've been watching this program since liftoff. Those low orbit snaps will be great...if it ever happens. I would venture to say...like everyone else...those bright spots are being looked at. Maybe we are being looked at, too.
 

Offline David Cooper

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Re: Why No More CERES Images?
« Reply #3 on: 12/05/2015 17:57:59 »
I read something last night on the BBC's text service (red button, then type in 154):-

"The fascinating bright spots on the surface of the dwarf planet Ceres have come into sharper view. What were initially thought to be just a couple of brilliant, closely spaced features at one location now turn out to be a clutch (a what?) of many smaller dots. The latest pictures were acquired by the US space agency's Dawn spacecraft on its first full science orbit since arriving at Ceres on 6 March. The spots were seen from a distance of 13,600km."

They don't show pictures on the text service, but I'm sure they'll appear somewhere soon. It sounds as if the reason we haven't seen them earlier is that the spacecraft is still maneuvering into a closer orbit and there may not have been any better images than the original ones until now - it may be in an eliptical orbit at the moment and so perhaps it's been moving further out and has only just come back close in.
 


Offline Teakhat

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Offline chiralSPO

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Re: Why No More CERES Images?
« Reply #6 on: 16/05/2015 20:40:16 »
Thanks Teakhat!

Gosh, I really want to know what those bright spots are!!

http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/spaceimages/details.php?id=PIA19546
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/spaceimages/details.php?id=PIA19545
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/spaceimages/details.php?id=PIA19544

It appears that the bright spots ("spot 5") are unique on Ceres. Is it unreasonable to think that it might be material from the object that impacted Ceres to make that crater? I don't know, based on the size of Ceres, and how hard something would have to hit it to make such a crater, would the impacting object be expected to stay largely intact and in the center of the crater, or would it be expected to explode and rain down over a large area (or leave orbit)?

It doesn't appear that this crater is unique in other obvious ways--it isn't the deepest or widest, or in a special location (like a pole that wouldn't be exposed to much sunlight...), and no other striking geological features nearby... Perhaps it could be one of the most recent impact craters--there don't appear to be any craters on top of it, and there is at least one crater beneath it...
 

Offline David Cooper

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Re: Why No More CERES Images?
« Reply #7 on: 17/05/2015 00:16:12 »
If it's made of cheese like the moon, it could be mould.
 

Offline Teakhat

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Re: Why No More CERES Images?
« Reply #8 on: 24/05/2015 07:07:50 »
13,600 klm is a lot more than the 375 klm that will show these spots rather definitively........

Until then, it's thumb twiddle time, I guess!
 

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Re: Why No More CERES Images?
« Reply #8 on: 24/05/2015 07:07:50 »

 

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