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NASA wants to send a new messenger to Ceres – Technology Daily –


2018-11-08 02:00:25 Source: Technology Daily

Picture of Ceres from the NASA detector "Dawn".

Image Source: US Space Network Bright spots in the Okato crater.

Today's look

Our reporter Liu Xia

NASA announced on November 1 that the fuel on the Dawn was exhausted and could not handle its main antenna toward the Earth or its solar panels towards the sun. Because of the lack of mobility officially ended the mission "Dawn". "Dawn" is still in the orbit of Ceres and will remain for decades.

So we should send a new messenger to Ceres? What is the main mission of the new messenger? The US Space Network drew attention to the report in sixth place.

The need to go deep into the Ceres surface

"Dawn" found that Ceres' surface is dotted with hundreds of strange peaks, plenty of water ice and organic molecules (the basic components of life). But at the end of dawn, scientists have many big doubts that have not yet been elucidated.

Paul Schenk, a scientist who participated in the Ceres mission, and a member of the Space Research Association at the Moon University and Planetary Institute, said, "To solve these problems, it may be necessary to go deep into the Ceres surface because information obtained from the circulatory the runways are still limited. "

She should focus on the Okato crater

Schenk said he hoped the detector would be sent to examine the Occator crater. The picture taken in October 2016 by Dawn shows a clear area on Ceres, right in the crater. The crater is 92 kilometers wide and contains the brightest and brightest bright spots on Ceres and contains salt sediments – sediment left by salt water that freezes from the ground and freezes on the surface. This discovery reveals that the Ceres interior is warmer than the scientists thought.

In addition, the most common mineral in the Okato crater is sodium carbonate, which is also widely found in places with hydrothermal activity on Earth (including the Yellowstone National Park, etc.). Schenk said, "It is well known that certain bacteria can survive in these places."

But he also said that the survival of microbes on Ceres is "very unlikely," because the impact heat lasts for life. It is important to know that the earliest forms of life appeared 700 million years after the Earth was born. "This kind of impact produces enough hot melt ice and produces groundwater that circulates in the middle, but tens of thousands to millions of years the hot zone is shrinking and the water is still freezing."

Schenk said that regardless of whether Ceres could become a living environment, the hydrothermal process seen in it can help scientists understand similar processes on other celestial bodies in the solar system, such as wood that is considered to be the solar system most likely. Wei Er, Titan. Like bacteria living in deep-sea hydrothermal vents, organisms with similar features on other celestial bodies may not need sunlight, instead they can rely on the survival of geothermal energy.

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