Questions tagged [pluto]

Questions regarding the former 9th (now dwarf) planet Pluto.

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6
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2answers
82 views

Will Pluto ever clear its path?

I am not quite sure if it would, considering i'v looked through countless websites and found nothing and would like to know if it could clear its path and join the other planets?
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5answers
376 views

Is the point of this paper to say that Pluto's status as a planet should have been handled scientifically, rather than by a vote?

The abstract of a paper currently in-press in Icarus: The Reclassification of Asteroids from Planets to Non-Planets (Metzger et al. 2018, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2018.08.026) says: It is ...
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1answer
126 views

Does Pluto's atmosphere collapse?

There were theories that Pluto's atmosphere collapses when it gets too far from the sun. Then I've read papers that says that it doesn't. But NASA says that the surface pressure went down recently (...
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2answers
13k views

In my mid-forties, I believe I have seen Pluto for the first time with the naked eye

Early this morning going out on the balcony, I looked up on a star chart app to verify it was Jupiter I was seeing. Then I noticed the alignment of Mars, Saturn, and Pluto on the app. Never being ...
4
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1answer
219 views

How much are Neptune's and Uranus' orbits perturbed by Pluto and other KBOs?

Reading another question, I came across the argument that inconsistencies in Neptune's and Uranus' orbits lead to the discovery of Pluto. This brief write-up mentions Percival Lowell and William H. ...
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0answers
310 views

How do I determine the velocity of Pluto at aphelion and perihelion?

I am a college astronomy student and I have to find the velocity of Pluto at aphelion and perihelion. I have found the distance of perihelion to be $1.96\times10^9$ km. Aphelion has a distance of $3....
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2answers
2k views

Why are rocky and small planets nearer to the Sun whereas big, gas giants are farther?

Planets, including Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars are rocky planets and are small compared to gas giants. And all these planet are near to Sun. But mass is directly proportional to force. So why don'...
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2answers
774 views

When and where are Pluto and Neptune closest to each other?

I found two sources sort of answering this question, but conclusions I made of them contradict each other. https://www.reddit.com/r/askscience/comments/29jrvq/...
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2answers
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If Pluto is tidally locked with Charon, is its rotation still slowing down?

I know that a a planet or moon's rotation will slow down or speed up until it is tidally locked with a body, is Pluto's rotation being affected by the sun or is it being forced by Charon just to to be ...
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2k views

Is Pluto a “proto-planet”?

My question is this : could the Charon-Pluto system becomes in the coming few millions years a full fledged planet, as in the IAU classification ? I ask this because there are two facts that bother ...
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2answers
8k views

What is the resolution in megapixels of the Hubble Telescope?

What is the resolution in megapixels of the Hubble Telescope? The HST cannot see the planet Pluto clearly. Why is that?
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0answers
42 views

What are the requirements to become a planet? [duplicate]

A planet is taught to us (at primary school) as a ball of rock that orbits around the Sun and is similar to our own planet, Earth (in as a ball of rock). But of course, humans have to be more specific ...
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1answer
30 views

How do I reduce planetary photometry to standard viewing geometry using phase angle?

I'm trying to make light curves for Pluto using old data. Most papers give magnitudes "reduced to standard viewing geometry" of r = 39.5 AU, Δ = 38.5 AU, and α = 1 degree, where r is ...
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3answers
225 views

Closest point on Earth to a planet?

I'd like to be able to find the latitude and longitude on Earth (assuming a sphere is fine) which is closest to Pluto at the current time (or where Pluto is directly overhead). Is this possible with ...
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3answers
193 views

What is the centre of rotation of Pluto?

I know that Pluto and Charon have been found to circle round each other, hence the reason Pluto is no longer a planet I believe, which would mean that the centre of rotation is an arbitrary (!) point ...
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3answers
5k views

What if Earth and Moon revolved around each other like Pluto and Charon?

What would be different for us if Earth and Moon revolved around each other like Pluto and Charon do?
4
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1answer
308 views

What is the temperature on surface of Pluto facing Sun?

According to wiki page, the mean temperature of Pluto is 44 degree K (-229 degree C). However, given that Pluto is tilted greatly and there is daylight for long periods on part of Pluto facing the Sun ...
4
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1answer
82 views

How much is the zoom of Sun-Pluto eclipse image

The Sun-Pluto eclipse picture was taken from 2 million km from Pluto. At that distance, Pluto will have angular size of just 4'5". Hence this picture must be a zoomed up image. Approximately how much ...
3
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2answers
130 views

Can a probe orbit Pluto given Charon's gravity?

Is it possible for a man-made probe to orbit Pluto given its closeness to Charon? The gravitational field interaction of Pluto and Charon is likely to make simple orbit structure difficult for a man-...
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2answers
114 views

Can New Horizons probe turn back and start orbiting Pluto

New Horizons probe has found astonishing features on Pluto, while the likelihood of making even greater discoveries is remote in further space. Is it possible for New Horizons probe to turn back and ...
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2answers
553 views

Size of Sun as seen on Pluto

What would be the size of Sun as seen from surface of Pluto? It obviously depends on the distance and one would expect it to be very small. However, due to different optical phenomenon, the size of ...
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2answers
235 views

Could Pluto and Charon have extra-Solar origin?

Pluto and Charon seem to have surprisingly young surfaces, considering that resurfacing events were expected to be rare for them. Could the explanation be that they actually are young? Formed later ...
4
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1answer
351 views

What places on Pluto and Charon are facing each other?

What places on Pluto and Charon are facing each other? Are Pluto and Charon perfectly tidally locked, or is there a slow rotation over time? And how long after formation should they have become ...
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1answer
1k views

Can Pluto and Neptune collide anytime in future? [duplicate]

We know that, the orbit of pluto ambiguously cuts the orbit of Neptune. I want to know, whether the revolving speed of Neptune is equal to the revolving speed of pluto. If not, is there a possibility ...
2
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1answer
106 views

Why are there no more images revealed by New Horizon?

Since a few days after the flyby there are no more images published on the NASA page. Why is NASA waiting to publish any more images for some reason? Or is there something happened to New Horizon?
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1answer
112 views

Has New Horizon's data updated Charon's orbital elements?

For years I've been fascinated with the mutually tide-locked bodies Pluto and Charon. In July 2012, The Astronomical Journal published an article The Orbit of Charon Is Circular by Buie, Tholen and ...
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2answers
818 views

Why are there no stars on New Horizons images of Pluto

I followed the New Horizons Mission a little, and saw among others this image of Pluto: I wonder, why you can't see any stars on it. As far as my very basic knowledge in astronomy goes, I think you ...
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1answer
799 views

How did New Horizons take such well-lit pictures of Pluto?

The photos of Pluto from New Horizons are truly beautiful. But considering that Pluto is so far away from its nearest start - our Sun - how is it so well lit up? Did the New Horizons have a massive ...
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2answers
243 views

How much more massive would Pluto have to be to clear its neighborhood?

How much more massive would Pluto have to be to clear its neighborhood?
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1answer
3k views

why does pluto have a high orbital inclination

Pluto has a high orbital inclination compared to the planets in our solar system. What has caused Pluto to have such a different orbit -- was it always like this, or did something happen to make it ...
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1answer
245 views

Pluto- Current theories regarding its geological nature?

The images of New Horizons from Pluto will take more a year to arrive from space, for the moment with have some compressed images as a preview. Nasa has advanced some information regarding the ...
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1answer
1k views

Shall we say now that Pluto is “larger than Mercury” ?

http://pluto.jhuapl.edu/News-Center/News-Article.php?page=20150717-3 "Scientists working with NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft have observed Pluto’s atmosphere as far as 1,000 miles (1,600 kilometers) ...
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1answer
130 views

Is the Tombaugh Regio on Pluto visible from Earth?

Is the Tombaugh Regio on Pluto discernably visible from Earth ground based or Earth orbiting telescopes? And more generally, can surface features seen in Hubble images be matched with images from New ...
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2answers
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Does Pluto have impact craters?

I've heard from a lot of sources that Pluto doesn't seem to have any impact craters, but I see a few things that look like impact craters, highlighted in this picture: For comparison, here's ...
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1answer
141 views

What's to be gained from the New Horizons mission once it's beyond the Kuiper Belt?

Now that we have seen what Pluto has to offer and New Horizons is headed to the Kuiper Belt, is there anything we can gain from the mission in interstellar space after it travels beyond the Kuiper ...
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0answers
486 views

How long will it take Pluto to grow to planet size? [duplicate]

Pretty much everything in our solar system has collisions with smaller objects that lead to an increase in the mass of the larger. With Pluto being one of the largest things in the area of which it ...
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1answer
70 views

How can I predict space directions?

Did the Neptune and Pluto trajectories ever cross or was it a mere reclassification? Do studies say that I can predict an intersection between 2 trajectories or movements based on data now? Do I have ...
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3answers
389 views

Would Pluto keep an orbit without its moon?

I haven't studied space that much, but I know that Pluto has very little gravity, but just enough to keep a human on its surface. Would Pluto keep a regular orbit around the sun without some extra ...
13
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1answer
834 views

Do Pluto and Charon have unusual Lagrange points?

The usual examples of Lagrange points one most commonly encounters, Sun-Earth and Earth-Moon Lagrange points, are examples of 3-body problems where $M_1\gg M_2\gg M_3$. The Pluto-Charon system, ...
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4answers
2k views

Why is there a black stripe in the Hubble images of Pluto?

While reading reports about the New Horizons misson, I noticed an odd vertical, black stripe in the images of Pluto. Here is an example: Source: Hubble Discovers a Fifth Moon Orbiting Pluto (07.11....
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1answer
705 views

What will New Horizons be able to say about a magnetic field at Pluto?

Does NASA's New Horizons flyby probe to Pluto have instruments to measure Pluto's (or Charon's) magnetic field, if any? I'm a bit confused by the Wikipedia article which says that New Horizons, ...
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6answers
2k views

Is Pluto still a dwarf planet?

Recent news seem to suggest that astronomers are arguing about whether Pluto should become a planet again. However, I cannot find an official source for this. Is this actually true?
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3answers
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Pluto's orbit overlaps Neptune's, does this mean Pluto will hit Neptune sometime?

We know that the orbits of Pluto and Neptune overlap. This means that pluto sometimes crosses the orbit of Neptune; will Pluto hit Neptune in any circumstance?
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1answer
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What theories are there in explaining the formation of the Pluto-Charon system?

After reading the question and answer to Effect of Charon on Pluto, a further question is this: how is the Pluto-Charon relationship explained? Specifically, what theories are there in how did the ...
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1answer
362 views

Have Pluto or any of its moons been mapped?

I was looking over some of the data for the terrestrial planets, and noticed that Venus, despite its cloud covering, had been mapped by the Arecibo Observatory. Also that other planets such as mars, ...
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1answer
438 views

Effect of Charon on Pluto

Even though Pluto is not known as a planet anymore, theroetically it has/had a moon, called Charon. I've heard about something that their size are so close to each other that while Charon rotates ...