NASA Releases Dazzling Up-Close Photos of Pluto's Surface

Thursday, 10 September 2015 - 4:01PM
Space
Astronomy
Space Imagery
Thursday, 10 September 2015 - 4:01PM
NASA Releases Dazzling Up-Close Photos of Pluto's Surface
Our historic closest flyby past Pluto has come and gone, but we're still reaping the benefits months later, as NASA has released new close-up photos of Pluto's surface, which give us our best look yet at the alien terrain.

NASA Releases Dazzling Up-Close Pictures of Pluto's Surface

NASA Releases Dazzling Up-Close Pictures of Pluto's Surface

NASA is gradually learning more and more about Pluto's geology and topography, but so far they've learned that there is actively flowing ice, mountain ranges, and far more exotic surface chemistry than anyone ever expected.

NASA Releases Dazzling Up-Close Pictures of Pluto's Surface

NASA Releases Dazzling Up-Close Pictures of Pluto's Surface

NASA Releases Dazzling Up-Close Pictures of Pluto's Surface

NASA also released this new photo of Pluto's distinctive atmospheric haze

NASA Releases Dazzling Up-Close Pictures of Pluto's Surface

NASA scientists believe that the haze, which essentially shows us Pluto's weather for the first time, is created when ultraviolet sunlight breaks up methane gas particles in the atmosphere. The initial analysis showed that there are two distinct layers of haze: one 50 miles above the surface and one 30 miles above the surface.

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"My jaw was on the ground when I saw this first image of an alien atmosphere in the Kuiper Belt," said New Horizons principal investigator Alan Stern in July. "It reminds us that exploration brings us more than just incredible discoveries -- it brings incredible beauty."
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And finally, NASA also released the most recent photo of Pluto's moon, Charon:

NASA Releases Dazzling Up-Close Pictures of Pluto's Surface

Via io9.
Science
NASA
Space
Astronomy
Space Imagery
NASA Releases Dazzling Up-Close Photos of Pluto's Surface

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