At 4:50 am Pacific Time today the New Horizons Probe got as close to Pluto as possible and snapped some pictures of the little quasi-planet’s surface. It takes 15 hours for the pictures to get back to Earth, but this is the closest we have ever been to Pluto and some new discoveries are already being made. Such as: Pluto is a lot bigger than we had assumed.
Our earlier assumptions about Pluto were made via a composite of photos taken by the hubble telescope, but now with the probe’s flyby, it’s been discovered that Pluto is 1,473 miles in diameter-much bigger than we had thought. (Fix those wiki pages stat!, also… some sort of joke about testicles looking smaller in the cold or something.)
New Horizons was sent up in 2006, and it has taken nearly ten years for it to reach Pluto traveling at 36,000 mph. It’s been a long road Pluto, but your vindication is nigh.
To follow all the exciting love planet’s news you can follow NASA on instagram or New Horizon’s Twitter feed, or download the free Pluto Safari app. (When did NASA get so hip to the hop?)
UPDATE to the UPDATE:
The New Horizon’s Data has safely arrived to Earth!
To keep up with all of the updated PLUTO information check out NASA’s New Horizon Page HERE.
Dark spot on Charon (one of Pluto’s moons) is named Mordor and beautiful photos sent back from NHP
Check it out HERE.