Posts Tagged ‘Pluto’

Feast your eyes and let the guesswork commence…

“Complicated” surface of Pluto Image credit: NASA New Horizons

(more…)

moon-cartoonWASHINGTON, May 28, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — NASA will host a media teleconference at 1 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, June 3, to discuss the Hubble Space Telescope’s surprising observations of how Pluto’s moons behave, and how these new discoveries are being used in the planning for the New Horizons Pluto flyby in July.

Participants in the teleconference will be:

  • John Grunsfeld, associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington
  • Mark Showalter, senior research scientist at the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California
  • Douglas Hamilton, professor of astronomy at the University of Maryland, College Park
  • John Spencer, scientist at Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado
  • Heidi Hammel, executive vice president of the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy in Washington

(more…)

‘An exoplanet, or extrasolar planet, is a planet outside the Solar System’ – Wikipedia.

At least 175 multiple planetary systems have been found as of 25 November 2013. Stuart Graham investigates.

Exoplanets are a mixed bunch. Some are 10 times the size of Jupiter, others seem more like moons and may orbit their star in less than 2 days. Here we’ll look first at a small planetary body in the solar system, see how it relates to its neighbours, and then see what similarities and/or differences can be found in a few selected exoplanet systems. There may even be a few surprises.

Less well-known than Pluto is its supposed twin Orcus, or 90482 Orcus to give its full name. It’s a trans-Neptunian object or maybe a dwarf planet. As it even has its own moon Vanth, it has the reputation of being the ‘anti-Pluto’. Its orbit looks like a mirror image of Pluto’s orbit (red: Pluto, blue: Orcus, grey: Neptune).

orcus_pluto
— Symmetric orbits of Orcus and Pluto – image credit Wikipedia —

(more…)