Presentation on theme: "NEW HORIZONS NASA’s Pluto-Kuiper Belt Mission: “The First Mission To the Ninth Planet And the Solar System’s Third Zone” XXXX Days Since Launch XXXX."— Presentation transcript:
NEW HORIZONS NASA’s Pluto-Kuiper Belt Mission: “The First Mission To the Ninth Planet And the Solar System’s Third Zone” XXXX Days Since Launch XXXX Days Still To Pluto
Pluto was discovered in January- February 1930, by Clyde Tombaugh at Lowell Observatory, Arizona. Pluto: A Little Background Pluto is a Small, Distant World <1% Mars’s Max Apparent Diameter (0.1 arcsec) And 50,000 times fainter than Mars (V~14)
An Historic Journey Pluto-Charon July 2015 KBOs 2016-2020 Jupiter System March 2007 The Initial Reconnaissance of The Solar System’s “Third Zone” Launch Jan 2006
AND WE OBSERVED IO ERUPTIONS GALORE At least 11 volcanic Plumes were detected. We obtained the most detailed view ever of a plume on Io. Tvashtar is near Io’s North pole: always visible. Tvashtar stretches ~340 km above the surface. Tvashtar Prometheus Masubi Io night side illuminated by Jupiter
TVASHTAR MOVIE 5 frames 8 minutes First direct measurements of plume dynamics. Ejection speed ~1 km/sec. Acceleration during descent. Apparently non-ballistic trajectories.
AND FINALLY, MAGNETOTAIL EXPLORATION Flying down Jupiter’s deep magnetotail to perform the first traverse through a giant planet’s magnetotail. ~300 R J Equatorial Plane Noon-Midnight Plane +90 days @ 2000 R J Former Terra Incognita
NEXT UP: IN 2015: WHAT WE CAME FOR Jan-Mar: Observatory Phase April: Begin Approach Phase 14 July: Closest Approach Aug-Dec: Data Downlink
REVOLUTIONARY DATASETS Six months of encounter science. Exceed Hubble resolution for months. Map Pluto and all three satellites. Make composition maps of Pluto and Charon. Map surface temperature fields. Directly measure Pluto’s escape rate. Assay Pluto’s atmospheric structure and composition. Determine if either Pluto or Charon differentiated. Locate additional satellites. The most exciting discoveries will likely be the ones we Don’t anticipate.
ANTICIPATE DRAMATIC RESULTS Triton & Pluto At Best HST Resolution Triton from Voyager