Christian Broda tells me that fascination with the possibility of life on other planets has permeated popular science fiction for generations. The chance that an alien civilization could exist lurking just out of detection range of human beings has been a thought that has crossed the mind of more than just casual observers. Therefore, whenever some interesting unexplained potential evidence creeps up from distant worlds, the thought process picks up again to contemplate the possibilities.
According to CNET, NASA has found white discolorations and a three-mile high pyramid formation on Ceres, which is a distant asteroid between Mars and Jupiter. While the discoloration is largely considered to be a result of the reflective properties of ice or water, the huge mountain type object remains a mystery. NASA’s Dawn spacecraft has been studying Ceres taking a number of pictures, but so far no images of extraterrestrial life has been found. The formations are likely natural, yet strange, rock and geographical phenomenon.
While the pictures from Dawn do not support any real conclusion without additional data to back up potential theories, the chances of one of the different spacecraft exploring the reaches of the solar system uncovering evidence of life is intriguing. While it is hard to say if such information would ever be released to the general public, the photos from Dawn serve up some interesting observations of a place nobody has visited before or likely will. That means science fiction fans can relax because the genre is safe—for now.