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Pluto's New Horizons

The mysterious dwarf planet, more than 5 billion kilometers from Earth, with trillions of questions. Pluto's home, known as Kuiper Belt. Beyond Pluto. New Horizons assistance in discovering Pluto. What does all of it mean? Pluto is just the beginning of many discoveries. Another puzzle piece to the incomplete puzzle of questions about the universe.

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Never-ending Puzzle


Pluto, the most notorious inhabitant of its home, The Kuiper Belt, is just yet another piece of the vast galaxy puzzle. Discoveries of Pluto have opened more doors and questions as to what is beyond the dwarf planet, and the contents of the Kuiper Belt. Researching Pluto, and taking a deeper look into the Kuiper Belt answers many questions we have now, all the while forming new ones such as a never ending puzzle. So open ended that we will have the rest of eternity to continue to research and discover new information on the wonderful galaxy.


"With the mainly nitrogen atmosphere, it is very cold and thin. The atmospheric pressure is at ground level , equal to about 80 km above earth." (Gater, Will.) The haze throughout the dwarf planet is assumed to be created by the sunlight reacting the the methane and multiple other gases in the atmosphere. However the higher higher atmospheres are thought of to be far cooler than the lower. "The weather on Pluto is almost identical to that of the Earths, however instead of a water cycle as on Earth, Pluto has a nitrogen cycle." (Gater, Will). "Pluto's diameter was established to be 2304 km on June 12, 2006."(Jones, Barrie).

Home: The Kuiper Belt


"This frigid expanse beyond the gas giant Neptune is the home to millions of icy bodies, known as Kuiper Belt objects, majority thought to be pristine remnants from the birth of our planetary neighborhood some 4.6 billion years ago." (Gater Will.) These objects having originated from outer regions of the solar nebula. Given that the Kuiper Belt is mostly remnants from the beginning of time, taking a further look into the contents would provide a much better understanding of how the our planets have formed and evolved as a solar system. "An on going project - The Outer Solar Systems Origins Survey has a goal of mapping the area between the Kuiper Belt and Earth, hoping to get a better idea of how it was formed."(Gater, Will.)

New Horizons

NASA / Via

Images of Pluto collected last year from the New Horizons probe have given tons of information. "Pluto has a large crater with a diameter of 85 km, known as the Elliot crater. There is an intense wintery haze throughout the atmosphere. There has also been discovered what is known as Sputnik Planum. This is a huge plain full of churning nitrogen ice," (Battersby, Stephen). Although there are many more new discoveries on Pluto , one of the most important ones is the Wright Mons mountains. Which are now being closely looked at by the New Horizons team, particularly the flanks.


Battersby, Stephen. "Pluto A Whole New World." New Scientist 229.3066 (2016): 42-45. Academic Search Complete. Web. 13 Nov. 2016.

Gater, Will. "Beyond Pluto." New Scientist 228.3048 (2015): 34-37. Academic Search Complete. Web. 13 Nov. 2016.

Jones, Barrie William. Pluto: Sentinel of the Outer Solar System. New York: Cambridge UP, 2010. Print.

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