See NASA's most detailed flyover video of Ceres

The bright spots of Occator crater

The bright spots of Occator crater (Credit: NASA/JPL)

Since December, NASA's Dawn spacecraft has been as close as it will get to the surface of Ceres, the largest object in the asteroid belt. The space agency and its Jet Propulsion Laboratory have put together the most comprehensive video tour yet from the spacecraft's lowest mapping orbit.

Dawn's exploration of the dwarf planet has yielded a number of interesting discoveries, like a shiny, pyramid-like mountain called Ahuna Mons and a series of remarkable bright spots, believed to be reflective salts, in a large crater dubbed Occator.

The video below is comprised of images taken by Dawn and shown in enhanced color to bring out subtle differences in the surface materials. Areas that show as brown are rich in minerals found in clays, blues may indicate areas with pits and cracks and the bright areas are likely the salt deposits.

In addition to the bright spots in Occator and Ahuna Mons, the flyover also takes you past Ikapati and Haulani craters, among others. Check it out for yourself:

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