Roamy here. Yesterday was not only the 42nd anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, it was also the day they announced that the Hubble Space Telescope had found a fourth moon orbiting Pluto. I remember the bragging that Hubble was able to resolve Pluto and Charon into two separate objects, and I must have missed the memo when they found moons #2 and #3. Nix and Hydra are estimated to be 20 – 70 miles in diameter, while new moon #4 is estimated between 8 and 21 miles in diameter. It’s more than 3 billion miles from Earth to Pluto, so the Wide Field Camera 3, added during the last repair mission, got a workout.
These latest pictures were taken for further detailed planning of the New Horizons mission, which was launched in 2006, back when Pluto was still a planet. New Horizons passed the orbit of Uranus earlier this year and should reach Pluto in 2015.
Is launchy as good as ‘splodey?