Pluto

Cosma Home > Communication > Knowledge > Realm > Physical > Universe > Solar System > Pluto

Spotlight

This is an interactive 360° video — press and hold to explore!


Seeking Pluto’s Frigid Heart (The New York Times)

Related

Pages

Physical Realm
Universe Astronomical Instrument
Galaxy Milky Way, Andromeda
Planetary System Star, Brown Dwarf, Planet, Moon

Solar System Sun
Terrestrial Planet Mercury, Venus, Earth (Moon), Mars
Asteroid Belt Ceres, Vesta
Jovian Planet Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Trans-Neptunian Object
Kuiper Belt Pluto, Haumea, Makemake
Scattered Disc Eris, Sedna, Planet X
Oort Cloud Etc. Scholz’s Star
Small Body Comet, Centaur, Asteroid

Posts

  • Get Lost in Space! (9/14/2018) - Way back in August, in anticipation of the start of a new school year, I set out to update the pages on this site related to space. Those pages tend to be popular among the teachers and students who use Cosma, and I happen to enjoy updating them, too. It sounded like a short, fun … Continue reading Get Lost in Space!

Resources

These are organized by a classification scheme developed exclusively for Cosma. More…

General

Portal

Solar System Exploration: Pluto (NASA)
New Horizons: Exploring Pluto and Beyond (Elizabeth Howell, Space.com)
New Horizons: NASA’s Pluto-Kuiper Belt Mission (Official Site, Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory)
New Horizons Mission (NASA)

Dictionary

Pluto : a dwarf planet occupying an orbit that crosses the orbit of Neptune — in 2006 the International Astronomical Union defined planet in such a way as to exclude Pluto, reclassifying it instead as a dwarf planet. Although discussion of the matter continues, the change has been widely accepted — Webster

OneLook, Free Dictionary, Wiktionary, Urban Dictionary

Encyclopedia

Pluto is a dwarf planet in the Kuiper belt, a ring of bodies beyond Neptune. It was the first Kuiper belt object to be discovered.

Pluto was discovered by Clyde Tombaugh in 1930 and was originally considered to be the ninth planet from the Sun. After 1992, its planethood was questioned following the discovery of several objects of similar size in the Kuiper belt. In 2005, Eris, which is 27% more massive than Pluto, was discovered. This led the International Astronomical Union (IAU) to define the term “planet” formally in 2006, during their 26th General Assembly. That definition excluded Pluto and reclassified it as a dwarf planet.

Pluto is the largest and second-most-massive known dwarf planet in the Solar System and the ninth-largest and tenth-most-massive known object directly orbiting the Sun. It is the largest known trans-Neptunian object by volume but is less massive than Eris, a dwarf planet in the scattered disc. Like other Kuiper belt objects, Pluto is primarily made of ice and rock and is relatively small—about one-sixth the mass of the Moon and one-third its volume. It has a moderately eccentric and inclined orbit during which it ranges from 30 to 49 astronomical units or AU (4.4–7.4 billion km) from the Sun. This means that Pluto periodically comes closer to the Sun than Neptune, but a stable orbital resonance with Neptune prevents them from colliding.

Pluto has five known moons: Charon (the largest, with a diameter just over half that of Pluto), Styx, Nix, Kerberos, and Hydra. Pluto and Charon are sometimes considered a binary system because the barycenter of their orbits does not lie within either body. The IAU has not formalized a definition for binary dwarf planets, and Charon is officially classified as a moon of Pluto. — Wikipedia

Pluto (Eric Weisstein’s World of Astronomy, Wolfram Research)
David Darling’s Internet Encyclopedia of Science
Encyclopædia Britannica

Introduction




Pluto Overview (NASA)

Search

WolframAlpha

Science





New Horizons: Exploring Pluto and Beyond (Elizabeth Howell, Space.com)
New Horizons: NASA’s Pluto-Kuiper Belt Mission (Official Site, Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory)
New Horizons Mission (NASA)
New Horizions (Wikipedia)

Preservation

History

Pluto in Depth (NASA)

Library

WorldCat, Library of Congress, UPenn Online Books, Open Library

Participation

Education

All About Pluto (Space Place, NASA)
Pluto (Cosmos4Kids)
Planets and Dwarf Planets (Ask an Astronomer, Cornell University)

Course

OER Commons: Open Educational Resources

Community

Organization

International Astronomical Union (IAU)
Minor Planet Center (International Astronomical Union)

News

Pluto News (NASA), ScienceDaily, Phys.org, NPR Archives

Book

ISBNdb

Government

Pluto (NASA)

Document

USA.gov

Expression

Fun


Music

Song Lyrics

Poem

OEDILF: The Omnificent English Dictionary In Limerick Form

returntotop

More…

Pluto News -- ScienceDaily Dwarf Planet Pluto News. See images and read science articles on Pluto, Eris and other Kuiper Belt objects.

  • Gas insulation could be protecting an ocean...
    on May 20, 2019 at 3:56 pm

    Computer simulations provide compelling evidence that an insulating layer of gas hydrates could keep a subsurface ocean from freezing beneath Pluto's icy exterior. […]

  • Crater counts on Pluto, Charon show small Kuiper...
    on February 28, 2019 at 7:12 pm

    Using New Horizons data from the Pluto-Charon flyby in 2015, scientists have indirectly discovered a distinct and surprising lack of very small objects in the Kuiper Belt. The evidence for the paucity of small Kuiper Belt objects (KBOs) comes from New Horizons imaging that revealed a dearth of small craters on Pluto's largest satellite, Charon, indicating that impactors from 300 feet to 1 mile (91 meters to 1.6 km) in diameter must also be rare. […]

  • Missing-link in planet evolution found
    on January 28, 2019 at 4:17 pm

    For the first time ever, astronomers have detected a 1.3 km radius body at the edge of the Solar System. Kilometer sized bodies like the one discovered have been predicted to exist for more than 70 years. These objects acted as an important step in the planet formation process between small initial amalgamations of dust and ice and the planets we see today. […]

  • New Ultima Thule discoveries from NASA's New...
    on January 3, 2019 at 4:11 pm

    Data from NASA's New Horizons spacecraft, which explored Kuiper Belt object Ultima Thule earlier this week, is yielding scientific discoveries daily. […]

  • NASA's New Horizons mission reveals entirely new...
    on January 2, 2019 at 9:43 pm

    Scientists from NASA's New Horizons mission released the first detailed images of the most distant object ever explored -- the Kuiper Belt object nicknamed Ultima Thule. Its remarkable appearance, unlike anything we've seen before, illuminates the processes that built the planets four and a half billion years ago. […]


Phys.org - latest science and technology news stories Phys.org internet news portal provides the latest news on science including: Physics, Nanotechnology, Life Sciences, Space Science, Earth Science, Environment, Health and Medicine.

  • Neptune's moon Triton fosters rare icy union
    on May 22, 2019 at 6:00 pm

    Astronomers using the Gemini Observatory explore Neptune's largest moon Triton and observe, for the first time beyond the lab, an extraordinary union between carbon monoxide and nitrogen ices. The discovery offers insights into how this volatile mixture can transport material across the moon's surface via geysers, trigger seasonal atmospheric changes, and provide a context for conditions on other distant, icy worlds. […]

  • Seven things we've learned about Ultima Thule,...
    on May 21, 2019 at 8:18 am

    About a billion miles more distant than Pluto is Ultima Thule, a peanut-shaped object in the outer solar system that's the farthest place ever visited by humans. […]

  • Gas insulation could be protecting an ocean...
    on May 20, 2019 at 3:00 pm

    A gassy insulating layer beneath the icy surfaces of distant celestial objects could mean there are more oceans in the universe than previously thought. Computer simulations provide compelling evidence that an insulating layer of gas hydrates could keep a subsurface ocean from freezing beneath Pluto's icy exterior, according to a study published in the journal Nature Geoscience. […]

  • New Horizons team publishes first Kuiper Belt...
    on May 16, 2019 at 9:19 pm

    NASA's New Horizons mission team has published the first profile of the farthest world ever explored, a planetary building block and Kuiper Belt object called 2014 MU69. […]

  • Spring on Pluto: An analysis over 30 years
    on May 14, 2019 at 11:16 am

    Whenever it passes in front of a star, Pluto provides precious information about its atmosphere, precious because occultations by Pluto are rare. The survey achieved by researchers from Paris Observatory over several decades of observations appears in the journal Astronomy and Astrophysics of May 10, 2019. Interpreted in the light of data collected in 2015 by the probe New Horizons, it allows them to refine physical parameters that are essential for a better understanding of Pluto's climate and […]


Pluto New Horizons News and images from the Pluto New Horizons team

  • The PI’s Perspective: On Final Approach to...
    by Bill Keeter on December 20, 2018 at 12:13 pm

    The New Horizons spacecraft is healthy and on final approach to explore Ultima Thule in the Kuiper Belt. On New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, New Horizons will swoop three times closer to “Ultima” than we flew past Pluto! On Saturday, Dec. 15, the New Horizons hazard watch team concluded its work, having found […]

  • The PI’s Perspective: Share the News—The...
    by ptalbert on November 27, 2018 at 8:13 pm

    The New Horizons spacecraft is healthy and is now beginning its final approach to explore Ultima Thule — our first Kuiper Belt object (KBO) flyby target — about a billion miles beyond Pluto. And on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, New Horizons will swoop three times closer to “Ultima” than we flew past […]

  • The PI’s Perspective: Why Didn’t Voyager...
    by ptalbert on February 28, 2018 at 7:51 pm

    New Horizons is in good health and cruising closer each day to our next encounter, an end-of-the-year flyby of the Kuiper Belt object (KBO) 2014 MU69 (or “MU69” for short). Currently, the spacecraft is hibernating while the mission team plans the MU69 flyby. During hibernation, three of the instruments on New Horizons—SWAP, PEPSSI and SDC—collect […]

  • The PI’s Perspective: Wrapping up 2017 En Route...
    by ptalbert on December 6, 2017 at 3:31 pm

    New Horizons is in good health and cruising closer each day to its next encounter: a flyby of the Kuiper Belt object (KBO) 2014 MU69 (or “MU69” for short). If you follow our mission, you likely know that flyby will occur on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day 2019, which is just barely over […]

  • No Sleeping Back on Earth!
    by ptalbert on April 28, 2017 at 1:54 pm

    Today’s blog is from Alan Stern of the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado—principal investigator for NASA’s New Horizons mission. Three weeks ago we put our New Horizons spacecraft into hibernation mode, the first time we’d done that since late 2014, before the Pluto flyby. By coincidence, that same day – April 7—was also the […]


    Feed has no items.

New Horizons News Releases Feed New Horizons News Center Archives

  • A Prehistoric Puzzle in the Kuiper Belt
    by Mike.Buckley@jhuapl.edu (M. Buckley) on March 18, 2019 at 5:09 am

    The farthest object ever explored is slowly revealing its secrets, as scientists piece together the puzzles of Ultima Thule – the Kuiper Belt object NASA's New Horizons spacecraft flew past on New Year's Day, four billion miles from Earth. […]

  • New Horizons Team Publishes First Kuiper Belt...
    by Mike.Buckley@jhuapl.edu (M. Buckley) on March 16, 2019 at 6:00 pm

    The mission team has published the first profile of the farthest world ever explored, a planetary building block and Kuiper Belt object called 2014 MU69. […]

  • Ultima Thule in 3D
    by Mike.Buckley@jhuapl.edu (M. Buckley) on March 7, 2019 at 5:14 am

    Cross your eyes and break out the 3D glasses! NASA's New Horizons team has created new stereo views of the Kuiper Belt object nicknamed Ultima Thule – the target of the New Horizons spacecraft's historic New Year's 2019 flyby, four billion miles from Earth – and the images are as cool and captivating as they are scientifically valuable. […]

  • Research indicates small objects are surprisingly...
    by Mike.Buckley@jhuapl.edu (M. Buckley) on February 28, 2019 at 5:14 am

    Using New Horizons data from the 2015 flyby of the Pluto system, scientists have indirectly discovered a distinct and surprising lack of very small objects in the Kuiper Belt. […]

  • New Horizons Spacecraft Returns Its Sharpest...
    by Mike.Buckley@jhuapl.edu (M. Buckley) on February 22, 2019 at 5:16 am

    The mission team called it a "stretch goal" – just before closest approach, precisely point the cameras on NASA's New Horizons spacecraft to snap the sharpest possible pics of the Kuiper Belt object nicknamed Ultima Thule, its New Year's flyby target and the farthest object ever explored. Now that New Horizons has sent those stored flyby images back to Earth, the team can confirm that its ambitious goal was met. […]