New Horizons

Those poor objects stuck in size between asteroids and true planets.
Christopher K.
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Re: New Horizons

Post by Christopher K. » July 11th, 2015, 6:29 pm

On the 6th the New Horizons staff posted images acquired between 1 July and 3 July. The most intriguing image in my opinion shows a series of almost evenly-spaced dark areas; each of these areas is hundreds of kilometers across.

If it is recalled, on Independence Day New Horizons went into "safe mode"--but all is well once again with the spacecraft.

Three days from history!

More information:
http://www.nasa.gov/feature/latest-imag ... w-horizons

Christopher K.
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Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: New Horizons

Post by Christopher K. » July 13th, 2015, 12:26 pm

We're eighteen hours away!

I have alerted the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory of HRPO's events tomorrow. JHUAPL is a New Horizons partner; hopefully the HRPO events can be posted on its public list...
http://pluto.jhuapl.edu/Participate/com ... Events.php

There will be a live broadcast from HRPO early tomorrow morning for the Channel Two program "2une In".

Christopher K.
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Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
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Re: New Horizons

Post by Christopher K. » July 14th, 2015, 6:43 am

There are seven minutes left! I can't believe it's really happening...

Also, there will be a live broadcast from the Highland Road Park Observatory on 2une In in just a few minutes. Watch!

Christopher K.
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Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
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Re: New Horizons

Post by Christopher K. » July 14th, 2015, 1:31 pm

Well, we made it. A nice conference with the press was broadcast (and is being rebroadcast now) on probably all three NASA-TVs.

Today is the tenth anniversary of the Mariner 4 flyby of Mars--the first time human beings saw a closeup of another planet. How fitting that fifty years later the last piece of the "traditional Solar System" jigsaw puzzle is fit into place.

At this time the New Horizons spacecraft is purposefully out of contact so it can devote all of its energy to gathering precious data during these extremely important time frame. Remember, this is not a landing or even an orbiting; the spacecraft is passing Pluto once and that's it. (As a matter of fact, New Horizons is actually seeing the night side of Pluto right now.) Earth will receive the last set of important signals from New Horizons today at about 8pm CDT.

Christopher K.
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Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: New Horizons

Post by Christopher K. » July 17th, 2015, 12:29 pm

Even though the Post Flyby News Conference hasn't concluded (the questions from media hasn't even started), a wealth of new information is now public.

Dwayne Brown, a nice man with whom I had a phone conversation a few weeks ago, is helming the event. Dr. Brian May (also a member of the rock band Queen) is at the conference and said a few words about the New Horizons team having "inspired the world".

These are the revelations released by the team so far...
*Nix's diameter is about forty kilometers, and its brightness is between that of Pluto and Charon.
*Pluto's heart-shape apparently is rich in carbon monoxide.
*Pluto's atmosphere is symmetrical across the sphere, and probably stagnant.
*The SWAP instrument detected ionized nitrogen escaping from Pluto. The rough guess at this time is five hundred tons of material per hour is escaping!

Also, the team showed an animated flyby over a mountain range which has Rocky Mountain-high peaks.

Christopher K.
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Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
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Re: New Horizons

Post by Christopher K. » July 18th, 2015, 12:26 pm

All three NASA-TVs will rebroadcast the Post Flyby News Conference today at 1pm CDT, 3pm CDT, 8pm CDT and 10pm CDT. The Science Academy Cadets created artwork inspired by the new Pluto images during this morning's session.

Christopher K.
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Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
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Re: New Horizons

Post by Christopher K. » July 18th, 2015, 4:42 pm

The APOD on the day of the New Horizons close flyby shows the now-famous composite image of the double dwarf planet...
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap150714.html
...while the 13 July APOD shows the last view of the side of Pluto facing Charon...
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap150713.html
This side is really intriguing due to the evenly-spaced dark and light areas.

Incidentally, the time of closest approach was 6:50am CDT; the 2une In crew aired the countdown live from HRPO!

Christopher K.
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Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
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Re: New Horizons

Post by Christopher K. » July 21st, 2015, 4:24 pm

There are some pictures of Dr. May with the hard-working New Horizons team. May mentions that he had an "unforgettable three days"--I think everyone else in the world had at least an unforgettable forty-eight hours!

The pictures:
http://www.nasa.gov/feature/rock-staras ... w-horizons

Christopher K.
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Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
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Re: New Horizons

Post by Christopher K. » September 2nd, 2015, 7:11 pm

The APOD gentlemen assure us that although the two images of Pluto presented on the 6th have different resolutions, they can be used side-by-side for a 3-D view.

6 August APOD:
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap150806.html

Christopher K.
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Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
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Re: New Horizons

Post by Christopher K. » December 7th, 2015, 2:53 pm

The Northern Arizona DX Association has a short-term ham radio award available in commemoration of the "Year of Pluto". In honor of both the eighty-fifth anniversary of Tombaugh's discovery and the New Horizons spacecraft making it to Pluto, a special event with call sign W7P is in progress and will last until (I think) 12 December at 6pm CST.

Clyde Tombaugh's nephew Doug (N3PDT) will be a special guest operator during a portion of the event. The W7P station is actually set up inside the Pluto Discovery Dome at Lowell Observatory! Any station which contacts W7P will be eligible for the certificate.

More information is currently at...
http://www.nadxa.com/

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