Last Look: Ahuna Mons on Ceres
This photo of Ceres and one of its key landmarks, Ahuna Mons, was one of the last views Dawn transmitted before it depleted its remaining hydrazine and completed its mission.
This view, which faces south, was captured on Sept. 1, 2018 at an altitude of 2,220 miles (3,570 kilometers) as the spacecraft was ascending in its elliptical orbit. At its lowest point, the orbit dipped down to only about 22 miles (35 kilometers), which allowed Dawn to acquire very high-resolution images in this final phase of its mission. Some of the close-up images of Ceres are shown here.
Ahuna Mons is about 12 miles (20 kilometers) across and 2.5 miles (4 kilometers) high and displays sodium carbonate along its flanks. This is the most recent of a potential two dozen cryovolcanoes whose remnants are found across Ceres' surface.
Dawn's mission is managed by JPL for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. Dawn is a project of the directorates Discovery Program, managed by NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. JPL is responsible for overall Dawn mission science. Orbital ATK Inc., in Dulles, Virginia, designed and built the spacecraft. The German Aerospace Center, Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Italian Space Agency and Italian National Astrophysical Institute are international partners on the mission team.
For a complete list of Dawn mission participants, visit http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov/mission.
For more information about the Dawn mission, visit http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov.