New Horizons spacecraft closes in on Pluto, cruising at 14 miles per second
NASA and astronomers across the world are extremely happy at the moment. Their jubiliation is caused by a spaceship that is billions of miles away from planet earth.
Their happiness stems from the dact that humans are going to know about something we hardly new about. New Horizons spacecraft is all set to become the first probe to visit distant Pluto, capping 50-year reconnaissance mission.
NASA officials are both happy and apprehensive.Â “[The spacecraft] is very healthy, it has just happily taken away all the commands necessary to carry out the observations,” Mark Holdridge, Pluto Mission Encounter Manager said on Friday. Reports suggest thay the newest black and white image from New Horizons’ Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) appeared on Friday, showing Pluto as never before, NASA said in a statement.
But the journey was longer than what you can imagine in your wildest dream. The five billion-km journey to Pluto, an unexpectedly peach-hued world with contrasting dark and light regions across its face, has taken more than nine years.
Right now the New Horizons probe is cruizing at 14km per second, New Horizons awoke in January to begin observations of Pluto and its primary moon, Charon, located beyond Neptune in the Kuiper Belt region, which was discovered in 1992.