Dawn spacecraft at Ceres, illustration

Dawn spacecraft at Ceres, illustration

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Credit: CARLOS CLARIVAN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Dawn spacecraft at Ceres, illustration. Dawn is a robotic space probe designed to travel to the asteroid belt (between Mars and Jupiter) and study the minor planet Ceres and the asteroid Vesta (not seen), the two largest bodies in the asteroid belt. These two bodies will be studied to answer questions about their composition and formation, and the early history of the solar system. Dawn was launched on 27 September 2007. It arrived at Vesta in July 2011, and is scheduled to reach Ceres in March 2015.

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