New Horizons begins Pluto approach phase 2 of 3


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It’s getting closer! On April 5 New Horizons began the second of three approach phases in preparing for its July 14 fly-by of Pluto.

During this phase, which lasts until June 23, the spacecraft’s instruments will take the first ever color and spectral photos of the Pluto system. Observations taken during this period will provide sharper focus of Pluto and its five moons. Long exposure images will scan the region for additional moons and a possible ring system. Ultraviolet observation of both the surfaces and atmospheres of Pluto and Charon will begin during this phase.

The main goal of these observations, besides gazing at Pluto and its five moons, is to scan the region that the spacecraft will pass through, and make sure there is nothing there that might pose a threat.

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