Sunday, 19 July 2015

First Ever Closer View of Pluto Surface From New Horizons

 Introduction

 The close-up images sent by the satellite New Horizons in the vicinity of the dwarf planet show somewhat unexpected terrains on that planet. So far, the scientists have been grappling with the information that is available from the two-dimensional photos. This is because the two-dimensional views may not give the real world that is out there in this little planet orbiting at the verge of our solar system. That is why National and Aeronautical and Space Administration (NASA) has brought an amazing, simulated video of the space probe’s fly over the dwarf planet.


NASA’s Animated Video

NASA has on July 18, 2015 released the animated video of the space probe New Horizons’ flypast over the dwarf planet Pluto and it’s the biggest moon Charon.  This animated video props out all those features that hitherto remained hidden in previous two-dimensional pictures sent by other space probes that have gone past Pluto. The present video shows mountain ranges such as Norgay Montes, Tensing Norgay. Incidentally, Norgay Montes is named after one of the first people who reached the summit of Mount Everest. Some of the peaks seen in this video are up to 11,000 feet tall. This looks incredibly high given the fact that the peaks are made of frozen nitrogen and methane that cover most of the Pluto’s surface. The weight of the material that has gone into the making of these peaks would make the surface made of frozen nitrogen and methane under them simply crumble. It is not clear how these geographical structures remain intact on the surface. The video then transports the viewers to the Sputnik Planum, which is a vast plain of craterless surface. This plain indicates that portion of the dwarf planet is considerably young (only 100 million years old). According to the scientists, the plain lies within the Tombaugh Regio region, which is named after the discoverer of the planet. This region is also called as the Pluto’s heart.

Thuruvananthapuram California, USA