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Scientists identify a possible source for Charon's red cap

Southwest Research Institute scientists combined data from NASA's New Horizons mission with novel laboratory experiments and exospheric modeling to reveal the likely composition of the red cap on Pluto's moon Charon and how ...

NASA extends exploration for 8 planetary science missions

Following a thorough evaluation, NASA has extended the planetary science missions of eight of its spacecraft due to their scientific productivity and potential to deepen our knowledge and understanding of the solar system ...

Pluto's orbit is surprisingly unstable

In 1930, astronomer Clyde Tombaugh discovered the fabled "Ninth Planet" (or "Planet X") while working at the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona. The existence of this body had been predicted previously based on perturbations ...

Giant ice volcanoes identified on Pluto

Strange lumpy terrain on Pluto unlike anything previously observed in the solar system indicates that giant ice volcanoes were active relatively recently on the dwarf planet, scientists said on Tuesday.

Clues to Pluto's history lie in its faults

The world first glimpsed Pluto up close when NASA's New Horizons spacecraft whizzed by it in July 2015. One of the most exciting discoveries scientists made based on New Horizons data was that Pluto, despite orbiting at more ...

Hubble lends a helping hand

Far above rain clouds, light pollution, and atmospheric distortion, NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has a clear view of the universe. It has shown us distant galaxies, tracked interstellar objects as they soar through our solar ...

Scientists confirm decrease in Pluto's atmospheric density

When Pluto passed in front of a star on the night of August 15, 2018, a Southwest Research Institute-led team of astronomers had deployed telescopes at numerous sites in the U.S. and Mexico to observe Pluto's atmosphere as ...

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