To celebrate the second anniversary of New Horizons’ historic Pluto flyby on July 14, 2015, the mission team released new videos depicting fly overs of both Pluto and its large moon Charon and new maps with even greater detail of the planet and its large satellite.
The videos were made using actual spacecraft data and digital elevation models of both Pluto and Charon to simulate fly overs of both worlds from vantage points closer than those actually traversed by the spacecraft.
As a result, viewers are offered new, stunning perspectives of Pluto and Charon depicting unusual features discovered in New Horizons images over the past two years.
To emphasize both worlds’ topography, topographic relief is enhanced two or three times in the videos. Colors of surface features are also enhanced to highlight a high level of detail.
The two-minute Pluto fly over video begins over highlands southwest of the iconic left side of Pluto’s heart-shaped plain known as Sputnik Planitia and over the darker, cratered region bordering it known as Cthulhu Macula. Visible to the right are blocky mountain ranges inside the plains.
It next continues north over Voyager Terra, a region of rugged highlands, then dips south over an ...