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Sharpest images of Pluto's surface show Best View of Pluto’s Craters, Mountains and Icy Plains

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posted on Dec, 4 2015 @ 10:06 PM
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This stunning picture was released today showing Pluto’s icy crust and the Sputnik Planum’s flats in unprecedented detail , not bad for something 4.67 billion miles away.


They've also released this video which puts the picture into context.

This movie is composed of the sharpest views of Pluto that NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft obtained during its flyby on July 14, 2015. The pictures are part of a sequence taken near New Horizons’ closest approach to Pluto, with resolutions of about 250-280 feet (77-85 meters) per pixel – revealing features smaller than half a city block on Pluto’s diverse surface. The images include a wide variety of cratered, mountainous and glacial terrains – giving scientists and the public alike a super-high resolution view of Pluto’s complexity.



Our Solar System really is a beautiful place even in it's furthest darkest places.




posted on Dec, 4 2015 @ 10:14 PM
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That looks like the kind of picture you getting from photographing sand dunes from the sky. Those craters look like they were formed from giant drops of water, while the mountains look like frozen ice. Interesting that there appears to be fault lines between the large black objects at the bottom of the picture.

If a frozen slushball were to hit something like Pluto, would the water melt away leaving behind a layer of black soot/dust/rock on the surface?



posted on Dec, 4 2015 @ 10:26 PM
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Thats quite a pic!


Do those trails lead away from the crater, or too the crater, what made them?



posted on Dec, 4 2015 @ 10:53 PM
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I think I spotted a mars rock somewhere down there. Thank you super-high resolution photos!



posted on Dec, 4 2015 @ 11:15 PM
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a reply to: VoidHawk
Probably water from melted ice from whatever hit the planet. Now if it led to the marker from dead space id be having a holysh1t moment right alongside ya bro.



posted on Dec, 4 2015 @ 11:20 PM
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www.nasa.gov...

Good link for a peek...

I heard something about water being found as well...




posted on Dec, 4 2015 @ 11:24 PM
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a reply to: Ghost147


I think I spotted a mars rock somewhere down there. Thank you super-high resolution photos!


i was wondering how long it would take for people to start seeing little critters, pyramids, skulls, helmets and domes.
didn't take long.





posted on Dec, 4 2015 @ 11:32 PM
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There is an extremely evident quick stop between the mountain/hill ranges and the oddly smooth land area, almost no in-between debris. You get the rolling hills and rocks and then all of a sudden, uniformly, and for hundreds of miles, the "valley floor" or whatever that area would be called geographically. Geologists needed, please, for explanation and description.
edit on 4-12-2015 by Aleister because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 4 2015 @ 11:45 PM
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a reply to: VoidHawk

That blackest crater dead center about a quarter the way down with the fresh ring of debris around it appears to be the most recent in that crater field. All the fractured crust (like an eggshell) lines are around that. Like they haven't had time to fill in yet.

If that makes any sense.



posted on Dec, 4 2015 @ 11:48 PM
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a reply to: gortex

really neat. The crater field in the upper half is contrasted by the uncratered appearance of the rest of the pic. Like the whole planet should be pock marked, unless something really biig happened to Pluto and smoothed over a large portion of the surface.

Gigantum impactium Plutonumus



posted on Dec, 4 2015 @ 11:50 PM
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a reply to: stormcell


Interesting that there appears to be fault lines between the large black objects at the bottom of the picture.

Those aren't fault lines, they're roads between the under ground base entrances.



posted on Dec, 5 2015 @ 12:20 AM
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Gotta admit compared to Ceres Pludo is an Oasis of to the eyes.

But for a scientist I assume they're both equally entertaining.

Who knows, maybe Ceres has hidden surprises.

EDIT: Lol I misspelled Pluto. I'll not fix it!
edit on 12/5/2015 by jonnywhite because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 5 2015 @ 12:27 AM
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originally posted by: VoidHawk
Thats quite a pic!


Do those trails lead away from the crater, or too the crater, what made them?


The trails are probably water and dirt that formed jets as the impacting object melted and squished.

Here''s something similar on Earth:

photos1.blogger.com...

The large craggy area is either large rocks or completely slow frozen ice. The flatter areas are a mix of sand and ice mixed together.



posted on Dec, 5 2015 @ 04:24 AM
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originally posted by: Akragon
I heard something about water being found as well...

Well, the mountains you see in that image are made of water ice rather than rock!


originally posted by: Aleister
There is an extremely evident quick stop between the mountain/hill ranges and the oddly smooth land area, almost no in-between debris. You get the rolling hills and rocks and then all of a sudden, uniformly, and for hundreds of miles, the "valley floor" or whatever that area would be called geographically. Geologists needed, please, for explanation and description.

Basically, those are ice mountains (not rock), adjacent to plains "flooded" by nitrogen ice. Icy terrains usually produce these clear-cut types of terrain. Pluto is really out of this world, with a very alien and unfamiliar geology.

~~~

By the way, there are some older images that have just been downlinked at higher resolution: pluto.jhuapl.edu...
They make up this cool mosaic:



The context for this mosaic:



You can explore the areas covered by these mosaics in this big global colour view I uploaded to gigapan: www.gigapan.com...

edit on 5-12-2015 by wildespace because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 5 2015 @ 07:57 AM
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By the way, the newly published "strip" extends further down than shown. Here's my mosaic, going as far up as the edge of the mountains:



Zoomable version at photosynth: photosynth.net...

So, someone with enough patience could stitch the whole strip together (and make a very-very long post). ;-)



posted on Dec, 5 2015 @ 12:11 PM
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Those unmistakably resemble convection cells. You get those when a relatively hot fluid cools. The hot fluid rises to the surface, cools, and then sinks. However, since it can't sink where the hotter fluid is coming up, it has to move to the side. What you tend to get is several areas of upwelling, with lines between them where cooler fluid is sinking.

Try this: Get a cup of hot, black coffee (not full), some (~3 tablespoons) creamer (real or half-and-half, NOT the powdered stuff), a glass of ice and a spoon.

1.) Slowly pour the creamer into the coffee so that it all sinks to the bottom. DO NOT STIR.
2.) With the spoon, carefully lower two ice-cubes into the coffee so they are floating on top. Withdraw the spoon WITHOUT STIRRING.

You want to make every effort to not disturb the fluid; that's why you go slow and don't stir.

3.) Watch: The ice will quickly melt and the resultant cold water will sink beneath the hot coffee (if the ice is clear, you can see through it and watch the cold melt-water going straight down).

This will set-up very strong convection currents. In normal coffee, this would be invisible, but the current is strong enough to bring the creamer to the surface, so after a few minutes you will clearly see where the creamer is being brought to the surface, cooling and sinking. Since the upwellings are roughly circular, the sinking borders between them look like rough hexagons (or sometimes other polygons if the convection cells are not all the same size).

If this sounds too complicated, just go to a chinese restaurant and order some hot Miso or Egg-Drop soup. The stuff suspended in the soup makes the convection pattern show up nicely.

How ever you do it, you will see convection patterns just like what we see in the ice on Pluto.



Incidentally, on another board, several years ago, I predicted that Pluto would have an active surface due to tidal flexing from it's moon Charon. You'd better believe I did some mad fist-pumping when I saw these pictures.



posted on Dec, 5 2015 @ 01:22 PM
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a reply to: Saint Exupery

Except this isn't a fluid, but more like semi-solid, sludgy ice. I think the consensus is that these are sublimation pits.

[Edit] Sorry, I realised you were talking about the large banded formations in the terrain. This UMSF poster seems to agree with you. So, it seems, the large banded segments may be due to convective rising, while the pits may be due to convective sinking.
edit on 5-12-2015 by wildespace because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 5 2015 @ 01:35 PM
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a reply to: gortex

Pluto is amazing. Who would have expected such a geologically varied and seemingly pretty active surface on such a small object on the edge of our Solar System.? Aliens. ALIENS WOULD HAVE.



posted on Dec, 5 2015 @ 01:37 PM
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a reply to: Saint Exupery

So Pluto tastes like coffee and Chinese food? I'm hungry for some space exploring.



posted on Dec, 6 2015 @ 03:00 AM
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originally posted by: Aleister
There is an extremely evident quick stop between the mountain/hill ranges and the oddly smooth land area, almost no in-between debris. You get the rolling hills and rocks and then all of a sudden, uniformly, and for hundreds of miles, the "valley floor" or whatever that area would be called geographically. Geologists needed, please, for explanation and description.


No Geologist needed, it was Aliens.



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