When you think of the word planet, what usually comes to mind?
Many around the world have heard of the typical 8 planets. The typical ones include Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, and Uranus. The remaining one, Pluto, is also known as the only Dwarf planet…until now.
Ceres is a planet that has been recognized for being an unusual asteroid in the asteroid belt discovered by Giuseppe Piazzi. NASA, which stands for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, stated, “[The] dwarf planet Ceres is the largest object in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter and the only dwarf planet located in the inner solar system.” Ceres is more like Venus, Earth and Mars as the more terrestrial type of planets.
NASA has found that the layers of Ceres are less dense than that of the Earth and Venus. Also, NASA studies have shown Ceres probably has a solid core and a mantle made of water ice. In fact, Ceres could be composed of as much as 25 percent water. If that is correct, Ceres has more water than Earth does. Ceres’ crust is rocky and dusty with large salt deposits. The salts on Ceres aren’t like table salt (sodium chloride), but instead, are made of different minerals like magnesium sulfate.”
According to the NASA, “Ceres is one of the few places in our solar system where scientists would like to search for possible signs of life. Ceres has something a lot of other planets don’t: water. Here on Earth, water is essential for life, so it’s possible that with this ingredient and a few other conditions met, life could maybe exist there. Living things on Ceres, if they are there at all, would likely be very small microbes similar to bacteria.”
While Ceres might not have living things today, there could be signs it harbored life in the past. ”Ceres also has a high chance that it could sustain life and the research from NASA states,” Ceres has a very thin atmosphere, and there is evidence it contains water vapor.
Because of this, there is potential that history could be made on Ceres, and future air research can solve questions of possible life.