New Horizons just zipped by Pluto. NASA has now shared the best photo of Pluto so far to give an idea what will come tomorrow.
NASA's New Horizons spacecraft has flown by Pluto at the shortest distance of its mission. NASA as shared today the best photo yet of Pluto taken yesterday from 476,000 miles. The photos New Horizons hopefully has made will be revealed tomorrow. At about 7:49am ET the New Horizons spacecraft was only 7,800 miles (12,500 kilometers) above the surface. It took 9 years and 3 billion miles to get to this.
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NASA will reveal the first Pluto photos from today's flyby at 3pm ET.
NASA posted the latest Pluto photo on Instagram saying: "The dwarf planet has sent a love note back to Earth via our New Horizons spacecraft, which has traveled more than 9 years and 3+ billion miles. This is the last and most detailed image of Pluto sent to Earth before the moment of closest approach - 7:49 a.m. EDT today."
SNEAK PEEK of gorgeous Pluto! The dwarf planet has sent a love note back to Earth via our New Horizons spacecraft, which has traveled more than 9 years and 3+ billion miles. This is the last and most detailed image of Pluto sent to Earth before the moment of closest approach - 7:49 a.m. EDT today. This same image will be released and discussed at 8 a.m. EDT today. Watch our briefing live on NASA Television at: http://www.nasa.gov/nasatv The high res pic will be posted on the web at: http://www.nasa.gov. This stunning image of the dwarf planet was captured from New Horizons at about 4 p.m. EDT on July 13, about 16 hours before the moment of closest approach. The spacecraft was 476,000 miles (766,000 kilometers) from the surface. Image Credit: NASA #nasa #pluto #plutoflyby #newhorizons #solarsystem #nasabeyond #science
Right now the New Horizons Team is on NASA TV discussing the mission highlight.
New Horizons is an interplanetary space probe that was launched as part of NASA's New Frontiers program. Built by the Applied Physics Laboratory and the Southwest Research Institute, with a team led by S. Alan Stern, the spacecraft was launched to study Pluto, its moons and the Kuiper Belt, performing flybys of the Pluto system and one or more Kuiper Belt Objects (KBOs). The goal of the mission is to understand the formation of the Pluto system, the Kuiper Belt, and the transformation of the early Solar System.
The spacecraft will study the atmospheres, surfaces, interiors and environments of Pluto and its moons. It will also study other objects in the Kuiper Belt. Find more on the historic space mission background on Wikipedia and on the New Horizons Mission page on NASA.
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What is New Horizons doing after the Pluto Flyby? It might just keep on going and visit other objects in the Kuiper Belt.