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This Is the Closest You’ll Get to Pluto For Now

NASA has now put together 100 color photos to show what it would be like to land on the dwarf planet.

by Madison Margolin
Jan 24 2017, 9:45pm

Astronauts haven't yet made it over to Pluto, the dwarf planet farthest from the sun, but now we at least have an idea of what it would look like.

In July 2015, NASA's New Horizons spacecraft passed by Pluto for a few hours after its 10-year journey. The spacecraft was going too fast to orbit around Pluto or to land on it, but it was still able to capture some quality photos of the dwarf planet.


In an adaptation of a black-and-white video of Pluto published last year, NASA has now put together 100 color photos into a new video to roughly illustrate what it might look like if astronauts were to land on the mysterious tiny planet—of course, without actually showing what the landing might look like.

The New Horizons spacecraft flew within 7,800 miles of Pluto, so while the picture quality is good, it's not very close up. However, the camera does zoom in, showing more detail from 250 miles away, 100 miles away, 15 miles away, and so on.

It's not clear however, when astronauts will ever be able to get that close up to Pluto to begin with. It would take at least ten years to get to Pluto, and NASA has no plans for any Pluto missions in the foreseeable future. Until then, at least we have this video footage.

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