Solar System Scratchpad

[Boiler Plate]

Discovered after an extensive search for Planet X. Initially thought to be Earth size and dubbed the ninth planet, then continuously reduced in size as its brightness became clear and its large moon was discovered, until another object Eris was discovered in its region of space that was more massive than it, when it was demoted to a Dwarf Planet status. Considered by some a double dwarf planet due to its large moon. Also has three tiny moons and could support a ring system. First Kuiper Belt object discovered, in 2:3 orbital resonance with Neptune. Target of New Horizons spacecraft. Its surface may contain organics.


Plutonian System[edit | edit source]

  • Charon - Large moon of Pluto, contains a tenth of its mass, making it a double dwarf planet. Its surface is completely covered in water ice, possibly from geysers. This could imply that it has subsurface liquid water. Ammonia may be helping to keep this water liquid near the surface. Has only occulted a star twice, once in 1980, and again in 2005. Has 10% less rock than Pluto, suggesting it formed in a collision and coalesced with outer material, similar to Earth's moon. The impactors could have been each about half the size of the moon.
  • Nix - Ss:Nix
  • S/2011 P 1 - Ss:S/2011 P 1
  • Hydra - Ss:Hydra

Web Pages[edit | edit source]

New Horizons in the News[edit | edit source]

NASA Solicits Plans for Mission (Dec 2000)[edit | edit source]

Funding Approved (Apr 2003)[edit | edit source]

To Launch with Minimal Plutonium (Oct 2004)[edit | edit source]

Shipped to Goddard for Pre-launch Tests (Jun 2005)[edit | edit source]

Approaching Launch (Nov 2005)[edit | edit source]

Just About to Launch (Jan 2006)[edit | edit source]

New Horizons Approaches Jupiter (Jan 2007)[edit | edit source]

5 Year Into Voyage, Halfway There (Jan 2011)[edit | edit source]

Crosses Uranus' Orbit (Mar 2011)[edit | edit source]

Adjusts Course to Study New Moon (Aug 2011)[edit | edit source]

In Home Stretch (Jan 2012)[edit | edit source]

Proposal for Stamp (Feb 2012)[edit | edit source]

Moons and Rings Could Be Hazardous (Oct 2012)[edit | edit source]

En Route (Nov 2012)[edit | edit source]

Pluto Planetary Status[edit | edit source]

See also Eris

First classical Kuiper Belt object Discovered (1992)[edit | edit source]

Four "Plutinos" Discovered, One A Quarter Charon's Size (1993)[edit | edit source]

Texas Sized KBO 1996 TL66 Found (1997)[edit | edit source]

1996 TO66 Found (1997)[edit | edit source]

Campaign Saved Pluto's Status as a Planet (1998)[edit | edit source]

Pluto Safe From Demotion (1999)[edit | edit source]

Scientists Respond to Not a Planet Claim (Feb 2001)[edit | edit source]

Ixion Discovered, Possibly Larger than Charon (Jul 2001)[edit | edit source]

Quaoar Size Measured, Larger than Ceres (Oct 2002)[edit | edit source]

Orcus Discovered, Possibly Largest (Feb 2004)[edit | edit source]

Sedna 2/3s Pluto's Size Discovered (Mar 2004)[edit | edit source]

Other KBOs May Be Smaller than First Proposed (Nov 2004)[edit | edit source]

See also 2002 AW197

First KBO Found Larger than Pluto, 10th Planet? (Jul 2005)[edit | edit source]

Defining Planet (Aug 2005)[edit | edit source]

Thermal Emission Study "Confirms" Eris Larger than Pluto (Feb 2006)[edit | edit source]

Hubble Finds Eris to be Only Slightly Larger than Pluto (Apr 2006)[edit | edit source]

Definition to Include All Round Objects Around Sun as Planets Proposed (Aug 2006)[edit | edit source]

Downgraded to a Dwarf Planet (Aug 2006)[edit | edit source]

Pluto Planet Expo (May 2007)[edit | edit source]

Eris More Massive than Pluto (Jun 2007)[edit | edit source]

Plutoid Class Announced (Jun 2008)[edit | edit source]

Eris Could Be Smaller Than Pluto (Nov 2010)[edit | edit source]

See Eris, Pluto, Haumea, Makemake, Sedna, Quaoar

How I Killed Pluto and Why It Had It Coming Book (Jan 2011)[edit | edit source]

See also Eris, Haumea

5 Years After Demotion Still Controversial (Aug 2011)[edit | edit source]

Moonlet and Ring Studies in the News[edit | edit source]

Pluto and Charon May Have Formed By Impact Like Earth/Moon (Feb 2005)[edit | edit source]

Hubble Finds Two New Moons (Nov 2005)[edit | edit source]

Kuiper Belt Moons Common (Jan 2006)[edit | edit source]

Discoverers Describe Discovery of Pluto's New Moons (Feb 2006)[edit | edit source]

Pluto Could Have Rings (Feb 2006)[edit | edit source]

Pluto's Moons Get Ready for Their Closeup (Jun 2010)[edit | edit source]

Fifth Anniversary of Nix and Hydra's Discovery (Jun 2011)[edit | edit source]

Fourth Moon Found (Jul 2011)[edit | edit source]

Fifth Moon Found (Jul 2011)[edit | edit source]

New Horizons Adjusts Course to Study New Moon[edit | edit source]

What to Name New Moon (Jul 2011)[edit | edit source]

Simulations Show Pluto Could Have Ring System (Aug 2011)[edit | edit source]

Kerberos and Styx Named (Jul 2013)[edit | edit source]

Pluto Studies in the News[edit | edit source]

Solid Methane Confirmed and Other Surface and Atmosphere Composition (Aug 1993)[edit | edit source]

Pluto's Atmosphere Warmer than Previously Thought (Mar 2009)[edit | edit source]

Could Pluto Have a Subsurface Ocean? (Dec 2010)[edit | edit source]

Atmosphere Much Larger, Cometlike, and Contains Carbon Monoxide (Apr 2011)[edit | edit source]

Organics May be on Surface (Dec 2011)[edit | edit source]

Surface Changes in Hubble Maps (Feb 2012)[edit | edit source]

Sharpest Ground Based Images Obtained (Sep 2012)[edit | edit source]

Occultations in the News[edit | edit source]

Charon and Pluto Occult a Star (Jun 2011)[edit | edit source]

Pluto and Charon occults star Jun 23, then four days later, both Pluto and Hydra eclipse another star Jun 27
Sophia Captures First Eclipse, Will Try Second One
Other's Capture First Eclipse, Will Try Second One

Occultation to Be Viewed From Aircraft (Jul 2011)[edit | edit source]

Misc[edit | edit source]

Pluto Gets a Name (1930)[edit | edit source]

Student Documentary at International Film Festival (Apr 2007)[edit | edit source]

Pluto Features[edit | edit source]

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