Pluto – Today is the Day!

Photo courtesy of NASA

Photo courtesy of NASA

Amazing!  Nine years and 3 billion miles later,  NASA’s New Horizons Probe Instagram’s us a picture, of Pluto.

Photo courtesy of NASA

Photo courtesy of NASA

On the left, is a picture from The Hubble Telescope, 2010. It was the clearest scientists had until the New Horizons Probe July 13, 2015.  The bright “heart shaped”  area covering a good part of Pluto’s southern hemisphere grabs your attention.

Pluto in Pluto 1

Photo courtesy of http://www.theverge.com

 

Combine imagination with Photoshop, and one may see Mickey Mouses’ beloved dog.

Photo courtesy @scottjohnson

Also named Pluto.

Pluto & Charon

Photo courtesy of NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute

Image of Charon, Pluto’s largest moon and a good look a the dark spots surrounding Pluto’s equator.  Photo taken July 11,  when New Horizons was 4 million kilometers (2.5 million miles) away from Pluto.

NEW INFORMATION ABOUT PLUTO AS OF JULY 14, 2015:

  • It’s bigger than we thought – Pluto measures 1,473 miles (2,370 kilometers) in diameter
  • Pluto is the largest object in the Kuiper Belt, a region beyond the Solar System made up ice and rocks that were left over from the formation, of the planets
  • Pluto has craters
  • Atmosphere thinner than expected – 700 times thinner than Earth’s
  • No new moons – (this surprised scientists) still Charon, Styx, Nix, Kerberos and Hydra
  • Pluto is made up of more ice and less rock, than previously thought
  • Has a polar cap with ice made of methane and nitrogen ice

It will take over 16 months, for New Horizons, to download all the data its computer’s collected.  And decades for scientists to discover the knowledge that was gained, in a few short hours, today, July 14, 2015.

 

 

 

 

 

Oh, the twisted thoughts that spin round my head. Please share yours!

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