NASA has shared an image of which rainbow-coloured planet? - Today Quizzes

NASA has shared an image of which rainbow-coloured planet?

NASA Pluto Images: NASA shared a multicoloured image of pluto, which showcases the complex surface of the dwarf planet in a new light. The rainbow coloured image was created by scientists of the New Horizons mission to highlight the many subtle color differences between the planet’s distinct regions.

The NASA Pluto images showcase different areas of the planet in various psychedelic colours. The images have been taken by the New Horizons, a NASA mission that was launched on January 19, 2006 to study Pluto, its moons and other objects in the Kuiper Belt.

The New Horizons probe conducted a six-month-long flyby of Pluto and its moons in 2015 and it continues to explore the distant solar system. 

NASA Pluto Images

NASA tweeted the multicoloured image of Pluto with a long post that started with, “Where does the rainbow end? Pluto isn’t really a psychedelic riot of colors—this translated color image was created by New Horizons scientists to highlight the many subtle color differences between the planet’s distinct regions.”

“Pluto has a complex, varied surface with jumbled mountains reminiscent of Europa, networks of carved-out valleys, old, heavily cratered terrain sitting right next to new, smooth icy plains, and even what might be wind-blown dunes,” NASA post further read.

New Horizons Mission

  • New Horizons is the first-ever space mission to study Pluto and the Kuiper Belt. The mission was launched on January 19, 2006.
  • The New Horizons space probe swung past Jupiter for a gravity boost and scientific studies in February 2007.
  • It conducted a six-month-long flyby study of Pluto and its moons in 2015 with its closest approach being on July 14, 2015. 
  • The spacecraft continues to explore the region and is expected to head farther into the mysterious Kuiper Belt to examine another of the ancient, icy mini-worlds, at least a billion miles beyond Neptune’s orbit. The mission is pending final approval.

New Horizons Mission Objective 

The New Horizons space probe is helping answer basic questions about the worlds at the edge of our solar system by studying their surface properties, interior makeup, geology and atmospheres.

Why is Pluto not a planet?

Pluto, which was earlier counted as one of the nine planets in our solar system, was downgraded to the category of a dwarf planet in August 2006 by the International Astronomical Union (IAU).

Pluto was downgraded to a dwarf planet as it meets only two out three criteria set by IAU for a full-sized planet, which include orbiting around the Sun and sufficient mass to assume hydrostatic equilibrium (a nearly round shape).

Pluto though failed to meet the third criteria, which is clearing the neighbourhood around its orbit and hence was taken down from the categorisation of a full-sized planet. The third criteria involves the planet becoming gravitationally dominant, ensuring there are no other bodies of comparable size other than its own satellites in its vicinity in space.

In size, Pluto is about half the width of the United States and its biggest moon Charon is half its size. 


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