Pluto’s Mysteries – dynamic planet reveals diverse terrain

Pluto's Mysteries
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Pluto’s Mysteries – a dynamic planet. British scientist explains the icy world

European scientists are learning more about Pluto’s mysteries from NASA’s New Horizons mission. The spacecraft continues in its summer hibernation.

Data sent back from the spacecraft reveals a dynamic planet. Filled with unusual features.  This is  helping scientists understand the unusually dynamic and icy world.

The video recalls all we know about this strange world. It includes an interview with British scientist Elliot Sefton-Nash, Planetary scientist, ESA.

Quotes: If you go in closer to the surface you can see this type of really diverse terrain.  There’s a huge range of mountains.  

There’s all kinds of different aged surfaces. Some of them have lots of craters. On Pluto it’s so cold that water ice is the hardest thing.  

It’s more like rock and so the stuff that forms the softer material is actually nitrogen ice

If you go in closer to the surface you can see this type of really diverse terrain. We’re not entirely sure how they formed yet but there’s a couple of leading theories. 

There’s a huge range of mountains.  

Some of them have lots of craters. Some of them have very few, which means they’re younger.

On Pluto it’s so cold that water ice is the hardest thing.

And I think the fact that they have able to form on planetary surfaces very far out in the Solar System, at very cold temperatures really has implications for a lot of places.

Surface

It’s interesting to know that there are molecules that could be involved in supplying biotic material to processes that may, one day, lead to life, or be involved in life or something like that, that they’re actually forming way out in the Solar System where no one really expected.

If you go in closer to the surface you can see this type of really diverse terrain.

But Pluto has four other moons, Styx, Nix, Kerberos, and Hydra.  

So there’s a lot going on around the Pluto system, it’s not just a cold, dead icy rock. 

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