Space Volcano Found By NASA Spacecraft In Asteroid Belt

KCBS_740MOFFETT FIELD (AP) — A NASA spacecraft has found what appears to be an inactive volcano on the surface of the largest object in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.

Scientists say the volcano on the dwarf planet Ceres is about half as tall as Mount Everest. It likely last erupted several hundred million years ago.

Many planets and their moons show evidence of past volcanic activity, but scientists didn’t know whether this also happened on Ceres.

The volcano discovery was published in the journal Science.

Dawn completed its prime mission in June and has been given an extension to continue studying Ceres. To save fuel, the spacecraft on Friday will move to a higher altitude above Ceres to begin new observations.

© Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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