Latest Pluto Stories
By Deborah Zabarenko WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Pluto, that cosmic oddball at the far reaches of our solar system, may have three moons instead of one, scientists announced on Monday.
Using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope to view the ninth planet in our solar system, astronomers discovered Pluto may have not one, but three moons. If confirmed, the discovery of the two new moons could offer insights into the nature and evolution of the Pluto system; Kuiper Belt Objects with satellite systems; and the early Kuiper Belt.
By Irene Klotz CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida (Reuters) - A Lockheed Martin Atlas 5 rocket being prepared to launch NASA's first probe to Pluto was slightly damaged when Hurricane Wilma cut a swath through Florida but should still be able to launch as planned, officials said on Friday.
By Deborah Zabarenko WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Xena, the possible 10th planet in our solar system, has its own moon, a dim little satellite called Gabrielle, its discoverers reported.
The astronomers who claim to have discovered the 10th planet in the solar system have another intriguing announcement: It has a moon. The moon discovery is important because it can help scientists determine the new planet's mass.
NASA's New Horizons spacecraft arrived at the Kennedy Space Center, Florida on Saturday for final preparations and testing for the probe's decade-long journey. It will be the first spacecraft to visit Pluto and its moon Charon.
The chances of the Earth being hit by a comet from beyond Pluto - a la Armageddon - are much lower than previously thought, according to new research by an ANU astronomer.
When planetary scientists announced on July 29 that they had discovered a new planet larger than Pluto, the news overshadowed the two other objects the group had also found. But all three objects are odd additions to the solar system, and as such could revolutionize our understanding of how our part of the celestial neighborhood evolved.
Observations of 1 Ceres, the largest known asteroid, have revealed that the object may be a "mini planet," and may contain large amounts of pure water ice beneath its surface.
By Gina Keating LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A California astronomer has discovered what he believes is the 10th planet in our solar system, a group of NASA-funded researchers said on Friday.
Planet -- A planet is a body of considerable mass that orbits a star and that doesn't produce energy through nuclear fusion. Until recently, only nine were known (all of them in our own Solar system). As of the end of 2002 over 100 are known, with all of the new discoveries being extrasolar planets. Astronomers often call asteroids minor planets, and call the larger planetary bodies (those which are commonly called planets) major planets. Planets within the solar system can be...
Asteroid -- An asteroid, also called a minor planet or planetoid, is a member of a group of small, planet-like bodies that are part of our solar system. They are believed to be remnants of the interstellar clouds, nebula, that were not incorporated into planets during the formation of the solar system. The largest asteroid in the inner solar system is Ceres with a diameter of 1003 km. It also was the first to be discovered, by Giuseppe Piazzi on January 1, 1801. Nowadays, over 9000...
Quaoar -- Quaoar ("kwah-oh-ahr", /kwA o Ar/) is a Trans-Neptunian object circling the Sun in the Kuiper belt, discovered in 2002 by astronomers Chad Trujillo and Mike Brown at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California. Quaoar is estimated to have a diameter of about 1,280 kilometres, which would make it the largest Solar System object discovered since Pluto and, indeed, the largest known minor planet. Larger than all the asteroids put together, it is about one...
Kuiper Belt -- The Kuiper belt is an area of the solar system extending outwards from the orbit of Neptune (at 30 AU) to 50 AU. The largest of the objects in the Kuiper belt are the planet Pluto and its moon Charon. A new Kuiper belt object, currently called 2001 KX76, has been found that is about the size of Charon, and larger than Ceres. Another such object, Quaoar, discovered in 2002, is half the size of Pluto. Other known Kuiper belt objects are progressively smaller. The exact...
Planet Charon -- Charon is the only known satellite of Pluto. Charon was discovered by astronomer James Christy in 1978 using photographic plates which showed a bulge moving around Pluto. Christy named it after the Greek mythological figure Charon but pronounced it differently. The "ch" at the beginning of the moon's name is soft so it sounds like "Sharon," after the astronomer's wife Charlene, nicknamed Char, which both have soft ch sounds. The mythological figure's name is...
- In medieval musical notation, a sign or neume denoting a shake or trill.