It began with a simple point of light. Then she appeared before us in the form of a fuzzy sphere. Now - in the latest image of NASA's New Horizons - you can clearly see how the intriguing new world of Pluto with its various surface features, including a huge dark stripe, known as "Whale", appears before your eyes.
When a new black-and-white image from the imaging camera of the long-range reconnaissance spacecraft New Horizons appeared on the screen in front of the members of the research team, they reacted to it with great joy and delight, because they could see Pluto as never before. There will be even more such moments when new images come from the New Horizons closer to July 14 - the date of maximum convergence.
Scientist Kurt Niebuhr, who is working on the New Horizons project, told NASA headquarters in Washington that they are now close to the distance from which Pluto’s geology has become visible. All are interested in the zone in the "whale" region at the equator of the cosmic body. "This is an area in which various dynamic processes continue to occur, which is of great scientific interest." The latest photo of Pluto from the New Horizons apparatus was obtained on July 9, 2015. At this time, it was within 3, 3 million miles (5, 4 million km) from the planet, and the image resolution was 17 miles (27 km) per pixel. From the resulting images, you can consider some features of Pluto's geology. On the new image of the planet, Charon is clearly visible, turned to the largest satellite of Charon, the side of Pluto, where the little-studied "tail" stretches - the dark side in the form of a whale along the equator.
"Among the structures pre-determined from the new photo, you can see a group of relief formations stretched to the east and northeast across the planet’s territory, approximately 1000 miles long and a complex region in which vivid landscapes are combined with the dark terrain of" whale ", said chief researcher Alan Stern. "After nine and a half years of travel, we are waiting for Pluto."