The New Horizons Flyby of Pluto: An Insider’s View

by · May 17, 2016 · 651 views ·

NASA's New Horizons spacecraft passed through the Pluto system on July 14, sending back our first closeup views of that distant, mysterious world and its retinue of moons. The spacecraft executed its observing sequence flawlessly, and the images are still being slowly downlinked back to Earth. The images have already revealed a remarkable landscape containing including broad plains, mountain ranges several km high, and evidence for volcanoes. The planet is enshrouded by a thin, blue atmosphere. Pluto’s four small moon are spinning wildly, for reasons not currently understood. Mark Showalter, a member of the New Horizons science team, will recount the inside story of the historic flyby and discuss the latest scientific results.

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