Home » News & Blogs » New Horizons sends back best picture yet of Ultima Thule
Bookmark and Share
Astronomy Now

New Horizons sends back best picture yet of Ultima Thule

25 Jan 2019, 21:38 UTC
New Horizons sends back best picture yet of Ultima Thule
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

The best view yet of Ultima Thule, captured when NASA’s New Horizons probe was about seven minutes from closest approach on 1 January. Image: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute
Ultima Thule, the Kuiper Belt body a billion miles past Pluto that NASA’s New Horizons probe encountered on New Year’s Day, is coming into much sharper focus in the highest resolution view yet received, a image that shows “intriguing light and dark pattern of unknown origin.”
“This new image is starting to reveal differences in the geologic character of the two lobes of Ultima Thule, and is presenting us with new mysteries as well,” said Alan Stern, the New Horizons principal investigator. “Over the next month there will be better colour and better resolution images that we hope will help unravel the many mysteries of Ultima Thule.”
The latest image was captured on 1 January when New Horizons was 6,700 kilometres (4,200 miles) from its target and just seven minutes before the moment of closest approach. Taken by the spacecraft’s wide-angle Multicolour Visible Imaging Camera, or MVIC, surface features 135 metres (440 feet) across could be distinguished.
“The oblique lighting of this image reveals new topographic details along ...

Latest Vodcast

Latest Podcast

Advertise PTTU

NASA Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

astronomy_pod