28Apr2017

Restore Pluto – Campaign To Broaden Astronomical Classifications

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Despite this encouraging news, Pluto haters are doing everything they can to keep our beloved old friend out of the planet family.

It’s been a few years now but a team of scientists seeking to restore Pluto to planethood have launched a new campaign. It was launched to broaden the classifications which led to its demotion to a “dwarf planet” a decade ago.

A team of six scientists from institutions across the United States has argued that the Pluto deserves to be a full planet, along with some 110 other bodies in the solar system, including Earth’s moon. It’s been a few years now that NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft flew past Pluto, giving us some incredible photos in the process.

In this spectacular image has been taken from 120,000 miles away from Pluto and has been constructed from a mosaic of six black and white images. The picture is dominated by the blue haze in Pluto’s atmosphere.

But even now NASA continues even now continues to capture the images of the dwarf planet. Elsewhere in the image mountains can be seen silhouetted against the haze in the top left, NASA says. It has also been found that the new Horizons is still out in space, heading towards a Kuiper Belt object four billion miles from Earth.

But this definition sidelines the research interests of most planetary scientists, said the paper’s lead author, Kirby Runyon, a doctoral candidate at Johns Hopkins University. Runyon said he and other planetary scientists are more interested in a planet’s physical characteristics, such as its shape and whether it has mountains, oceans and an atmosphere.

“If you’re interested in the actual intrinsic properties of a world, then the IAU definition is worthless,” he said by phone. Runyon and colleagues argue that the IAU does not have the authority to set the definition of a planet. Source: News Nation

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