Tags: ceres | bright spots | ancient civilization

Ceres Bright Spots Not Sign of Ancient Life (Sorry UFOers)

Image: Ceres Bright Spots Not Sign of Ancient Life (Sorry UFOers)

NASA's Dawn spacecraft hurtles toward the dwarf planet Ceres in 2014. Note the bright spots.  (REUTERS/NASA/JPL-Caltech/Artist's Conception Handout)

By    |   Friday, 11 Dec 2015 08:31 AM

Ceres's bright spots are not signs of an ancient civilization there, researchers say dryly, and more likely are deposits of a salty substance similar to epsom on Earth. Speculation on life on the dwarf planet has come from the UFO community.

Researchers spent months analyzing information from NASA's Dawn spacecraft in orbit around Ceres in an effort to find out more information on about 130 bright spots seen there, said ABC News.

Ceres is the largest object in the solar system's asteroid belt, according to a study in the journal Nature titled "Sublimation in bright spots on Ceres" released on Thursday.

"These unusual areas are consistent with the presence of hydrated magnesium sulfates mixed with dark background material, although other compositions are possible," said the study.

"Recent reports of water vapor, bound water and (oxygen and hydrogen) on Ceres raised the possibility there may be surface water there, and the new images reveal multiple bright spots on the floor of crater Occator that could be from surface ice. The largest of these, corresponding to the crater's central pit, produces haze clouds inside the crater with a diurnal rhythm, a clear indication of possible sublimation of water ice."

A news release on Wednesday by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory said there were observations of water vapor on Ceres by the Hershel space observatory in 2014.

"The Dawn science team is still discussing these results and analyzing data to better understand what is happening at Occator," said Chris Russell, principal investigator of the Dawn mission, based at the University of California in Los Angeles.

The website UFO Sightings Daily.com (we're not making this up) suggested in February that the bright spots resembled "city lights" and could be "massive doors" used by an alien civilization "to allow ships in and out."

A separate Nature study said the discovery of ammonia-rich clays on Ceres suggest that the dwarf planet may not have been formed in the asteroid belt and was created first in the outer solar system, according to NASA.

"The presence of ammonia-bearing species suggests that Ceres is composed of material accreted in an environment where ammonia and nitrogen were abundant," said Maria Cristina De Sanctis, a scientist who has studied Ceres, noted ABC News. "Consequently, we think that this material originated in the outer cold solar system."

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Ceres's bright spots are not signs of an ancient civilization there, researchers say dryly, and more likely are deposits of a salty substance similar to epsom on Earth. Speculation on life on the dwarf planet has come from the UFO community.
ceres, bright spots, ancient civilization
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2015-31-11
Friday, 11 Dec 2015 08:31 AM
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