On the way to Pluto at last!

We are the Borg.
asthmatic camel
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by asthmatic camel »

Rock Slightly Larger Than Other Rock Shock.

:shock:
DrMatt
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by DrMatt »

Stay tuned...
Anaxagoras
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Anaxagoras »

Less than 9 hours! :tater:

(Although since it takes light 4 hours to travel here from there I assume it will be longer before we see any good close-ups.)

Here's the relative sizes:

https://www.nasa.gov/sites/default/file ... k=P0eImmty
This graphic presents a view of Pluto and Charon as they would appear if placed slightly above Earth's surface and viewed from a great distance. Recent measurements obtained by New Horizons indicate that Pluto has a diameter of 2370 km, 18.5% that of Earth's, while Charon has a diameter of 1208 km, 9.5% that of Earth's.
In 'murican units that's 1472.7 miles and 750.6 miles respectively

Our own moon is bigger than Pluto, btw. That's why it's called a midget planet and not a real one.

But its diameter is almost 100 km larger than this previous estimate:
http://planetfacts.org/wp-content/uploa ... -Earth.jpg
gnome
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by gnome »

Alright, we're almost there. It's been a long trip, you're all cranky, you're hungry... but STAY TOGETHER. Don't go running off all willy nilly and make me come looking for you. We'll stop first at the gift shop restroom, DON'T TOUCH ANYTHING, then we'll have a seat on Charon and eat our packed lunches while we can get a good look at the damn thing. Everybody clear?
ed
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by ed »

Abdul Alhazred wrote:Our planetary little brother is not a dwarf. :evil:

http://img3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb2010 ... e_Vale.jpg
gnome
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by gnome »

We seem to have lost some passengers along the way...

:x :x :x :x :x

Dammit Abdul, I told you to do headcounts at every rest stop!











:(
Witness
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Witness »

http://solarsystem.nasa.gov/multimedia/ ... ch_720.png

From what I gathered:
– we'll never see the hemisphere posted by Anax any better :( (crowdfunding a new flyby, anybody?);
– the pictures have been taken but will need 16 months to get beamed back to earth.
whitefork
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by whitefork »

New York Times reports the dark blotch formerly known as the whale has been renamed Cthulhu.
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/15/scien ... .html?_r=0

and - signal received.
Bruce
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Bruce »

On this, the very day that New Horizons made its closest fly-by, my children were watching re-runs of "Are you smarter than a 5th grader". One of the questions was, "What is the furthest planet from the Sun". Among the 4 possible answers were Neptune and Pluto. My son said Neptune and I said Pluto. Neptune was the "correct" answer. :cussing:

My son didn't understand why I kept yelling HONK HONK HONK, but someday he will. :evil:
whitefork
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by whitefork »

tell them that Rhode Island has been demoted to Dwarf State status.
Bruce
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Bruce »

whitefork wrote:tell them that Rhode Island has been demoted to Dwarf State status.
I know exactly what they will say.

Yay! That means we're not the smallest state anymore! :P
Doctor X
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Doctor X »

HONK!

--J.D.
Anaxagoras
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Anaxagoras »

First known image of Pluto (1930).

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/newsgraphi ... covery.jpg

These are the images in which Pluto was found, because it changed position between the two images while the background stars stayed fixed.
ed
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by ed »

My (published) letter to the editor in today's Times:
Pluto is a planet,. Pluto has spent it's life believing that it is a planet and doing planet like things. Modern thinking has taught us that planetness is largely a social construct, invented by a white, male, exclusionary, heterosexual patriarchy. As such, it is wrong to force a micro-aggressive name on this entity. "Planetoid" indeed.

Pluto is what it wishes to be and glories in the flowering of it's planethood!!

HONK if you support Pluto's planethood!
:D
asthmatic camel
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by asthmatic camel »

Bruce, if your son was a real smartarse, he'd have disallowed the question. Pluto and Neptune are both furthest from the son at times, due to Pluto's eccentric orbit.

And it's still a boring rock.
ed
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by ed »

HOKN HONM HONK
Witness
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Witness »

[video]http://www.wired.com/wp-content/uploads ... AQPLyK.mp4[/video]

Look at the hi-res end, something's missing:
http://www.wired.com/wp-content/uploads ... 82x415.png
Spoiler:
craters!
Pluto:
http://www.wired.com/wp-content/uploads ... 4x1024.png

Charon:
http://www.wired.com/wp-content/uploads ... aron-1.jpg

Both with enhanced color:
http://www.wired.com/wp-content/uploads ... 24x576.jpg
Bruce
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Bruce »

oopsie
Last edited by Bruce on Thu Jul 16, 2015 1:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
ed
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by ed »

Liquid during the early stages?
Bruce
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Bruce »

Abdul Alhazred wrote: If you're smarter than a 5th grader you'd know better than to take multiple choice tests that are little better than push polls.

And you're still wrong.

Eris or Sedna or some Oort Cloud world yet unnamed. :coolspecs:
You just described every SC poll ever.
Anaxagoras
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Anaxagoras »

Witness wrote:Look at the hi-res end, something's missing:
Spoiler:
craters!
Probably because that far out there's just fewer objects in the same volume of space, hence fewer collisions. There are still a few craters you can see in the other photos though.
DrMatt
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by DrMatt »

It's had retin-A therapy
Rob Lister
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Rob Lister »

Anaxagoras wrote:
Witness wrote:Look at the hi-res end, something's missing:
Spoiler:
craters!
Probably because that far out there's just fewer objects in the same volume of space, hence fewer collisions. There are still a few craters you can see in the other photos though.
And doesn't spend much time in the common orbital plane. But damn,...
DrMatt
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by DrMatt »

Still, Witness may be on to something. Pluto may have a tectonic surface, for all we know
Anaxagoras
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Anaxagoras »

Charon doesn't appear to have a lot of craters either.
DrMatt
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by DrMatt »

Charon used Clearasil
hammegk
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by hammegk »

ed wrote:
Abdul Alhazred wrote:
Bruce wrote:More pictures. ...
A week before the historic New Horizons close-up of Pluto, NASA has released new photos and the first color movie showing strange surface detail of the "other red planet" and its largest moon.
Aha!

They are implicitly admitting it was a planet all along. :coolspecs:





HONK!
Sounds pretty darn explicit to me

Honk!!
Honk honk honk ... Bastards.
Anaxagoras
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Anaxagoras »

Close-up on Charon:

http://www.nasa.gov/sites/default/files ... k=hB3zRwUH

I guess there are more craters there than on the close-up of Pluto, no?
Doctor X
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Doctor X »

Honk?

--J.D.
Witness
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Witness »

[youtube]ydU-YrG_INk[/youtube]
This simulated flyover of Pluto’s Norgay Montes (Norgay Mountains) and Sputnik Planum (Sputnik Plain) was created from New Horizons closest-approach images. Norgay Montes have been informally named for Tenzing Norgay, one of the first two humans to reach the summit of Mount Everest. Sputnik Planum is informally named for Earth’s first artificial satellite. The images were acquired by the Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) on July 14 from a distance of 48,000 miles (77,000 kilometers). Features as small as a half-mile (1 kilometer) across are visible. Credit: NASA/JHUAPL/SWRI

And this:
Science Alert wrote:NASA’s New Horizon probe made it to Pluto with a PlayStation CPU for a brain

Probe suspected of playing Crash Bandicoot to pass time during 9-year journey.
PETER DOCKRILL
17 JUL 2015

New Horizon’s 9-year voyage across the Solar System to Pluto and beyond is the stuff scientific dreams are made of. But one of the most remarkable tidbits at the heart of NASA’s history-making endeavour is that the probe accomplished its epic feat with only a PlayStation 1 processor for a brain.

As pointed out by Alexandru Voica at tech blog Imagination, the same MIPS R3000 processor used to control New Horizon’s onboard systems once powered the first generation of Sony’s popular gaming console, which hit the market more than 20 years ago.

According to Voica, the MIPS R3000 CPU goes back even further than that – it was first used in workstations and servers as far back as the late 1980s. The chip on board New Horizon is a special, radiation-hardened version of the CPU, but its computational capabilities are only as powerful as the gaming console you used to play Tomb Raider on, back when Lara Croft was all chunky and polygonal. (Though still rather fetching, admittedly.)

James Vincent at The Verge says, “This isn’t unusual behaviour for NASA though, as the space agency always prefers the tried-and-tested to the cutting-edge. The next-generation Orion spacecraft, for example - the one that will hopefully take humans to Mars one day - is controlled by an IBM processor made back in 2002.”
http://www.sciencealert.com/nasa-s-new- ... or-a-brain
Pyrrho
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Pyrrho »

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CKWQGEiUMAAG8oD.jpg
Bruce
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Bruce »

Anaxagoras wrote: I guess there are more craters there than on the close-up of Pluto, no?
Sink holes. :wink:
Witness
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Witness »

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2015/07/ ... 674045.jpg

Nix (enhanced) & Hydra (BW)
http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2015/07/ ... 376313.jpg

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2015/07/ ... 570336.jpg
hammegk
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by hammegk »

Honk!
Witness
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Witness »

http://www.wired.com/wp-content/uploads ... 24x768.jpg

Pluto's atmosphere.
Doctor X
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Doctor X »

http://i170.photobucket.com/albums/u264 ... ylvnhe.jpg

--J.D.
Bruce
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Bruce »

I've been reading about the details of the heart shaped region. It's a nitrogen glacier. How cool is that!? :guitar:

We are used to referring to cold nitrogen as "liquid nitrogen", but Pluto is so far out there that it is cold enough for nitrogen to freeze solid, mp = -346F (-210C). Pluto's surface is around -400F, but apparently in the recent past, within the past million years, the surface became "warm" enough for the solid nitrogen to melt. Around the edges of the nitrogen glacier, you can see melt and flow patterns similar to what we see on earth with water glaciers.

So, even Pluto experienced a period of global warming, where "warm" is around -346F. Imagine a globally warmed Pluto with lakes and seas of liquid nitrogen. Carbon dioxide was also detected, but carbon dioxide remains solid until about -70F (-57C), so there may have been carbon dioxide ice bergs floating in a sea of liquid nitrogen. Thanks Obama!

What I find interesting is that is doesn't seem like it would take much to raise the temperature from -400F to -346F. An impact from a meteor would definitely do it, at least temporarily. If there is a lot of nitrogen and other solidified gasses on Pluto's surface, then they may have liquefied and re-frozen several times during Pluto's history after meteor impacts. That would have temporarily increased the density of Pluto's atmosphere, thus extending the period of global warming. Those meteor impacts would have become hidden underneath the nitrogen ice once it re-froze.

Cool stuff! 8)
Witness
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Witness »

http://pluto.jhuapl.edu/Multimedia/Scie ... 3_HR-g.jpg
Witness
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Witness »

http://astronomynow.com/wp-content/uplo ... enzo_1.jpg
Anaxagoras
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Re: On the way to Pluto at last!

Post by Anaxagoras »

[youtube]GC4ig303g_I[/youtube]

Thunderf00t has some thoughts about the images of Pluto.

Interesting theory he mentions too.