New images of dwarf planet Ceres offer insight into 'mysterious' white spot

New Nasa footage of the dwarf planet Ceres shows a glimpse of a mysterious white spot that has baffled star-gazers for almost a decade.

The black-and-white images were taken last week from a distance 238,000 miles (383,000km) and released by Nasa's Dawn spacecraft team yesterday.

The strange white spot had shown up in earlier images from the Hubble space telescope, and whilst scientists can't yet precisely say what it is, initial theories suggest it is a frozen pool of ice in the bottom of a crater that

Nasa's Dawn spacecraft is expected to enter orbit around Ceres in early March to conduct investigations into the composition of the small planet.

Ceres is the largest body in the main asteroid belt, which lies between Mars and Jupiter. It has an average diameter of 590 miles (950 km), and is believed to contain a large amount of ice. Some Nasa scientists think it's possible that the surface conceals an ocean.

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