The results of a major exploration mission showed Monday that the dwarf planet Ceres—long believed to be a barren space rock—is an ocean world with reservoirs of sea water beneath its surface. Maria Cristina De Sanctis from the National Institute for Astrophysics in Italy says of the discovery, "I’m extremely excited to find some evidence of liquid water, together with the fact that this body has a lot of minerals very interesting for the formation of life. It’s a good combination of chemical compounds that help in forming biological molecules."
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