Questions tagged [pluto]

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

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
30
votes
3answers
5k views

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?
8
votes
2answers
961 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 ...
18
votes
1answer
1k 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
311 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?
2
votes
2answers
1k 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/...
2
votes
1answer
2k 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 ...
8
votes
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 ...
8
votes
1answer
530 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 ...
8
votes
2answers
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 ...
4
votes
1answer
202 views

How many solar system objects that can really qualify as a KBO are likely to enter Pluto's Hill sphere each day?

A comment below Which celestial body is able to come closest to Pluto? says that Technically, many, many small Kuiper belt objects enter Pluto's Hill Sphere (or sphere of influence SOI) every day. ...
3
votes
2answers
108 views

Can we learn anything from the chaotic movement of Hydra and Nix?

The NASA Visualization Explorer Moons In Chaos says Hydra and Nix, two of the moons of Pluto, show chaotic movement due to the shifting gravitational field. How long a day lasts and where the sun ...
3
votes
0answers
500 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 ...
2
votes
0answers
84 views

Which celestial body is able to come closest to Pluto?

Other than Pluto's moons (including Charon), which known body comes closest to Pluto, and how close? Neptune doesn't come closer than 16 au. What about Orcus, whose orbit is similar to Pluto's, or ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

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 ...
1
vote
2answers
819 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 ...