In December of 2017, NASA’s New Horizon spacecraft snapped several pictures of a star cluster 1 billion miles from Pluto. The pictures were released just last week, reports Popular Mechanics.
The pictures, taken 3.79 billion miles from Earth, beats the distance NASA’s Voyager 1 was at when it took the famous ‘Pale Blue Dot’ in 1990, that being 3.75 billion miles.
— News-O-Matic (@News_O_Matic) February 12, 2018
New Horizon’s most recent pictures show two objects in the Kuiper Belt, the mysterious fringe of our solar system. so-called twilight zone on the fringes of our solar system.
Launched in 2006, New Horizon is on its way to a celestial object labeled 2014 MU69, located 1 billion miles beyond Pluto, our solar system’s furthest placed planet. The spacecraft flew past the planet in 2015.
Since then it has been in an electronic hibernation mode, thus conserving energy that will be needed when it approaches within 2,175 miles of MU69 on January 1, 2019.
The craft will be reactivated in June as it prepares for the imminent approach to what is sure to be an exciting glimpse at the most remote object ever directly observed by a spacecraft.
“New Horizons just couldn’t be better … we’re bearing down on our flyby target,” exclaimed lead scientist Alan Stern of the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado.
The countdown begins soon!
What do you think? What will NASA find when it approaches 2014 MU69?
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