The Plutester

Want more Pluto snaps? Of course you do.

NASA ‏@NASA 36 minutes ago
Frozen, craterless plains discovered in heart of Pluto’s ‘heart’ @NASANewHorizons #PlutoFlyby

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NASA ‏@NASA22 hours ago
Pluto moon Charon’s ‘Mountain in a Moat’ is a preview of future close-up images: #PlutoFlyby

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Can you find the snow leopard?


  1. says

    It has long been speculated that Pluto’s atmosphere freezes solid during its distant period, which is where it is now, and becomes gaseous only when the world is closer to the sun. That would explain the lack of craters, if the ice thaws and refreezes every few centuries.

  2. StevoR says

    @ ^ Gregory in Seattle :I’ve also read speculation(?) that Pluto’s atmosphere extends out to envelop Charon as well. I’d love to see if that is confirmed. Apparently Pluto loses a lot of mass and has quite an atmospheric tail according to this :

    Good article summing up the science so far.


    “…Marc Buie can very easily imagine what it must be like to walk around on Pluto: with less than 1% of your weight on Earth because of the low gravity, at temperatures of 230 degrees below zero, in the twilight because the Sun is nothing more than a dazzling star in the black sky, across snowfields of methane ice and transparent crystals of frozen nitrogen and with a gigantic moon hanging overhead – at least if you are on the right side of the planet.”
    – Page 61, ‘The Hunt For Planet X’, Govert Schilling, Copernicus Books, 2009.

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