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      The Pluto system: Initial results from its exploration by New Horizons

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          There is no author summary for this article yet. Authors can add summaries to their articles on ScienceOpen to make them more accessible to a non-specialist audience.

          Abstract

          The Pluto system was recently explored by NASA's New Horizons spacecraft, making closest approach on 14 July 2015. Pluto's surface displays diverse landforms, terrain ages, albedos, colors, and composition gradients. Evidence is found for a water-ice crust, geologically young surface units, surface ice convection, wind streaks, volatile transport, and glacial flow. Pluto's atmosphere is highly extended, with trace hydrocarbons, a global haze layer, and a surface pressure near 10 microbars. Pluto's diverse surface geology and long-term activity raise fundamental questions about how small planets remain active many billions of years after formation. Pluto's large moon Charon displays tectonics and evidence for a heterogeneous crustal composition, its north pole displays puzzling dark terrain. Small satellites Hydra and Nix have higher albedos than expected.

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          • Record: found
          • Abstract: found
          • Article: found
          Is Open Access

          The Pluto system: Initial results from its exploration by New Horizons

          The Pluto system was recently explored by NASA's New Horizons spacecraft, making closest approach on 14 July 2015. Pluto's surface displays diverse landforms, terrain ages, albedos, colors, and composition gradients. Evidence is found for a water-ice crust, geologically young surface units, surface ice convection, wind streaks, volatile transport, and glacial flow. Pluto's atmosphere is highly extended, with trace hydrocarbons, a global haze layer, and a surface pressure near 10 microbars. Pluto's diverse surface geology and long-term activity raise fundamental questions about how small planets remain active many billions of years after formation. Pluto's large moon Charon displays tectonics and evidence for a heterogeneous crustal composition, its north pole displays puzzling dark terrain. Small satellites Hydra and Nix have higher albedos than expected.
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            Impact and cratering rates onto Pluto

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              On the origin of the Pluto-Charon binary

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                26 October 2015
                10.1126/science.aad1815
                1510.07704

                http://arxiv.org/licenses/nonexclusive-distrib/1.0/

                Custom metadata
                Science, vol 350, 292, 2015
                8 pages - Initial Science paper from NASA's New Horizons Pluto Encounter
                astro-ph.EP

                Planetary astrophysics

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