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Here’s Pluto Like You’ve Never Seen It Before!

Pluto and Charon from 7.8 million km (4.5 million miles) on July 7, 2015. (Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute. Edited by J. Major.)

Pluto and Charon from 7.8 million km (4.5 million miles) on July 7, 2015. (Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute. Edited by J. Major.)

…no, really. There hasn’t been an image this detailed of Pluto and its moon Charon in pretty much EVER. (Which makes total sense since New Horizons is the FIRST spacecraft to visit it and it has less than a week and .05 AU  to go until its closest pass!) So actually everything you’ll see of Pluto and Charon from now on will be like never before.

That said, this view of the two worlds – captured by the LORRI camera on July 7 – is simply incredible! It’s hard to believe that we are now seeing such detail on a 1,430-mile-wide (2,302 km) planet that had been for so long just a point of light or, at best, a murky blob in our best telescopes.

What an exciting time to be a fan of space exploration!

Read more: Are You Ready for Pluto?

See more of the latest images from New Horizons here, and if you want to see how big Pluto and Charon are compared to Earth click below…

Scale comparison of Pluto and Charon to Earth and the Moon

Scale comparison of Pluto and Charon to Earth and the Moon

Also by combining images from LORRI with low-resolution color data from the Ralph instrument, the below image of Pluto was created that shows a heart-shaped bright region. Lovin’ it!

Learn more about New Horizons’ instruments here.

Color image of Pluto from July 8, 2015 (NASA-JHUAPL-SWRI)

Color image of Pluto from July 8, 2015 (NASA-JHUAPL-SWRI)

“The next time we see this part of Pluto at closest approach, a portion of this region will be imaged at about 500 times better resolution than we see today,” said Jeff Moore, Geology, Geophysics and Imaging Team Leader of NASA’s Ames Research Center, on July 9. “It will be incredible!” (Source)

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About Jason Major

Jason is a Rhode Island-based graphic designer, photographer, nature lover, space exploration fanatic, and coffee addict. In no particular order.

Posted on July 8, 2015, in Dwarf Planets, Pluto and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. It’s a very cool mission. And we’ll be getting data afterwards from New Horizons for months. Good stuff.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Stunning. So glad you referred to it as a planet.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Reblogged this on Beyond Earth Orbit and commented:
    Great photo and post by Jason Major of the Lights in the Dark blog.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Awesome pics !! And le best is… for the 14 !!
    Jeff Barani from Vence (France)

    Like

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