The New Stuff

New Horizons principal investigator Alan Stern of Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), center, has described the images as 'mind blowing'. Pictured is his reaction at seeing the new images from the spacecraft for the first time, earlier today

Stunning NASA Image Reveals Tombaugh Regio – The Hearth of Pluto

NASA is bringing you even more closer to planet pluto, this time with a photograph that reveals the dwarf planet’s heart-shaped region called Tombaugh Regio – NASA of course, is not a stranger when it come to parading such images..

During New Horizons’ closest flyby in July, the probe’s Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) zoomed in on the area and took photos within 9,550 miles of its surface. The stunning images of Pluto’s ‘heart of darkness’ were unveiled alongside two breathtaking animations showing flyovers of the plains and mountains of the frozen world.
‘I’m a little biased, but I think the solar system saved the best for last,’ New Horizons’ principle investigator, Alan Stern, said during the unveiling.


On July 14 the telescopic camera on NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft took the highest resolution images ever obtained of the intricate pattern of “pits” across a section of Pluto’s prominent heart-shaped region, informally named Tombaugh Regio. The image is part of a sequence taken by New Horizons’ Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) as the spacecraft passed within 9,550 miles (15,400 kilometers) of Pluto’s surface, just 13 minutes before the time of closest approach. [Image credit: NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI]

As you can see, Pluto’s heart is scarred with pits, which New Horizons’ scientists believe may have formed due to “a combination of ice fracturing and evaporation.” These pits seem to follow a pattern, and the team believes it could provide clues on the planet’s ice flow and the exchange of nitrogen between its surface and atmosphere. Whatever secrets the region reveals, this is now how I’ll imagine a scarred heart looks after a number of heartbreaks from now on.

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Ebenezer Obasi

Senior executive editor at EwtNet
A web developer, IT undergrad, terrible entrepreneur, internet freak and a man of a few other incongruous talents, Ebenezer has been writing on technology since 2012, and plans to do so until a few days before his ultimate fate: cryogenic preservation. If resurrected, he is likely to go back to writing on technology.

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