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Photos: Dwarf Planet Ceres, the Solar System's Largest Asteroid

Colorized Map of Ceres (Mercator Projection)

NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

Researchers used a clear-filter mosaic to make this colorized global map of Ceres. The map had color added using spectral data from other observations of Ceres (calculated using a color transformation program). The green and yellow areas at high latitudes show where Dawn's color imaging coverage remains incomplete. Image released March 22, 2016.

Center of Occator Crater in Enhanced Color

NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA/PSI/LPI

The bright spots in Occator Crater on dwarf planet Ceres appear here with enhanced color, in a view from NASA's Dawn spacecraft. Image released March 22, 2016.

False-Color View of Occator Crater

NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

False-color view of Occator Crater showing differences in surface composition. Red corresponds to a wavelength range around 0.97 micrometers (near infrared), green to a wavelength range around 0.75 micrometers (red, visible light) and blue to a wavelength range around 0.44 micrometers (blue, visible light). These images were captured by NASA's Dawn spacecraft from a distance of 2,750 miles (4,450 kilometers)

Ceres Illustration - Dawn Data

SO/L.Calçada/NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA/Steve Albers/N. Risinger (skysurvey.org)

An artist's illustration of Ceres based on mapping and observations from NASA's Dawn spacecraft currently orbiting the dwarf planet in the Asteroid Belt.

Ceres' Surface Up Close

NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

The surface of the dwarf planet Ceres, taken by NASA's Dawn spacecraft on December 10, shows an area in the southern mid-latitudes, around a crater chain called Gerber Catena

Ceres' Stressed Surface

NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

A close-up view of the dwarf planet Ceres, taken on Dec. 10, 2015, by the Dawn space probe, during a maneuver that placed the probe within 240 miles (385 kilometers) of Ceres.

Ceres' Cratered Surface Up Close

NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

This view of Ceres, taken by NASA's Dawn spacecraft on December 10, shows an area in the southern mid-latitudes of the dwarf planet. It is located in an area around a crater chain called Samhain Catena, from an approximate distance of 240 miles (385 kilometers) from Ceres.

Occator Topography

NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

This color-coded topographic map shows Ceres' Occator crater, which is home to the dwarf planet's weird bright spots. NASA unveiled the image on Sept. 30, 2015.Read the full story.

Topographic Ceres Map with Feature Names

NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

A color-coded map from NASA's Dawn mission reveals the surface topography of dwarf planet Ceres.Read the full story.

Map-Projected View of Ceres

NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

NASA's Dawn spacecraft obtained images for this map-projected view of Ceres during its high-altitude mapping orbit, in August and September 2015.Read the full story.

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