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Friday, October 30, 2015

New Horizons uncover the mysterious moon of Pluto

New Horizons spacecraft belonging to the US space agency (National Aeronautics and Space Administration/NASA) taking pictures of a very small Pluto moon and send it to Earth this week, and complete the Pluto's moon family portrait.

Kerberos moon looks smaller than the estimates of scientists and highly reflective surface, opposite to the predictions before the spacecraft crossed Pluto in July.
This artist's impression of NASA's New Horizons spacecraft encountering Pluto and its largest moon, Charon, is seen in a NASA image from July 2015. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/1RvzXhj)
"Once again, we surprised by Pluto system," said Hal Weaver, a New Horizons project scientist from the Applied Physics Laboratory of Johns Hopkins University in Laurel, Maryland.
Kerberos has a double lobe shape and may be the result of a coming together of two objects. (Picture from: http://bbc.in/1KwdtmG)
New data obtained from New Horizons on October 20, 2015 indicates that Kerberos has seen two curves of the curve is greater latitudes of about eight kilometers and a smaller one of about five kilometers. Members of the scientific team speculated that the unusual shape that Kerberos can be formed from a blend of two small objects.

Kerberos surface reflectivity similar to another Pluto's small moons (approaching 50 percent) and strongly suspect Kerberos, like the others, webbed ice water is relatively clean.
Charon (at bottom) is by far the biggest satellite in the system with a diameter of 1,212km. (Picture from: http://bbc.in/1KwdtmG)
Before New Horizons spacecraft encounter with the Pluto, the researchers used images from the Hubble space telescope to "measure" Kerberos by measuring its gravitational influence on its neighboring moons.

It influence which surprisingly strong, given the Kerberos very dim. They theorized that Kerberos is relatively large and massive, dimmed only because of its surface covered dark matter.

But small Kerberos with bright surface which is now revealed in new images show that the idea was not true, for reasons not yet understood. These new datas will bring a better understanding of the Pluto satellite system which is very interesting. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | BBC]
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