NASA releases full, jaw-dropping view of Pluto's crescent

Excuse me while I try to stop drooling

NASA has presented us with yet another stunning, backlit view of Pluto, taken by the New Horizons spacecraft during its flyby in July. The photo adds to the growing repertoire of Pluto images that are slowly being downloaded from the probe and released by the space agency. This one shows Pluto's crescent in full, spectacular detail, completing the partial crescent image that NASA released in mid-September.

The image was taken by New Horizons' Multi-spectral Visible Imaging Camera (MVIC), just 15 minutes after making its closest approach of Pluto on July 14th. It was taken from 11,000 miles away, when New Horizons looked back at Pluto toward the Sun. The photo shows the hazy layers of the dwarf planet's atmosphere, as well as the mountains on Pluto's surface that surround the icy plains of Sputnik Planum.


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