This Cerean mountain is beautiful to behold. Maybe it’s a lack of resolution or maybe the debris that formed the finely striated slopes is composed of a different mix of materials than seen on Earth, but the nearly parallel furrows make for an incredible sight. I almost want to grab a sand sled and go sliding.
On its steepest side, Ahuna Mons is about 3 miles (5 kilometers) high. Its average overall height is 2.5 miles (4 kilometers) with a length of about 12 miles (20 kilometers). Researchers are still at work trying to figure out how the feature formed. Right next door and apparently unrelated is similar size crater with hummocky floor steep slopes. What a pair they make!
Maybe it’s just sunlight, but the mountains right-hand slopes seem unusually bright as if salts might be in the mix. There’s evidence for this elsewhere on the dwarf planet in Occator Crater. The white patches there contain magnesium sulphates, a class of mineral salts that may have deposited after briny ice or water vaporized into space.
Some of the furrows seem to start near large and small cracks or fissures atop the mountain. Did this mountain form as a result of something pushing up from under the crust, I wonder?
I hope we’ll find out soon. In the meantime, feel free to stare goggle-eyed at the sight.