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Three Years Ago Today New Horizons Passed Pluto

14 Jul 2018, 18:55 UTC
Three Years Ago Today New Horizons Passed Pluto
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Extended-color image of Pluto made from data acquired by New Horizons on July 14, 2015. (NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI/Jason Major)
Holy Hadean history Batman, where does the time go? Today marks the third anniversary of New Horizons‘ flyby of Pluto and Charon, the first, last, and as yet only mission ever to the distant dwarf planet (aka the reigning King of the Kuiper Belt.) All of the close-up detailed images of Pluto and Charon we have (like this one) and likely will ever have for a long time were captured on this day in 2015 as the spacecraft zipped past. It was truly a historic moment in planetary exploration history!
Below is the post I wrote on the day of the flyby, July 14, 2015….just for a little space reverie.

It’s happened! At 7:49 a.m. EDT (11:49 UTC) this morning, July 14 2015, NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft performed its close pass of Pluto and, fourteen minutes later, its moon Charon. While we won’t receive a signal from New Horizons until about 9 p.m. tonight (and image data from the flyby won’t arrive until July 15th) NASA did share this gorgeous image this morning just before the flyby. it was taken by New Horizons ...

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