Science Drivers for the Future Exploration of Ceres: From Solar System Evolution to Ocean World ScienceOPEN ACCESS 

Julie Castillo-Rogez, Marc Neveu, Vassilissa Vinogradoff, Kelly E. Miller, Michael M. Sori, Federico Tosi, Britney Schmidt, Jennifer E. C. Scully, Mohit Melwani Daswani, Kynan Hughson

The Planetary Science Journal, Volume 3, Number 3
Published: March 16, 2022


“Dawn revealed that Ceres is a compelling target whose exploration pertains to many science themes. Ceres is a large ice- and organic-rich body, potentially representative of the population of objects that brought water and organics to the inner solar system, as well as a brine-rich body whose study can contribute to ocean world science. The Dawn observations have led to a renewed focus on planetary brine physics and chemistry based on the detection of many landforms built from brines or suspected to be emplaced via brine effusion. Ceres’ relative proximity to Earth and direct access to its surface of evaporites that evolved from a deep brine reservoir make this dwarf planet an appealing target for follow-up exploration. Future exploration, as described here, would address science questions pertinent to the evolution of ocean worlds and the origin of volatiles and organics in the inner solar system.”