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The Bruce Murray Space Image Library

Departing Pluto

Filed under trans-neptunian objects, New Horizons, pretty pictures, Pluto, amateur image processing, dwarf planets beyond Neptune, animation

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Departing Pluto New Horizons captured this sequence of images with its LORRI camera during the first week after its flyby of the Pluto system. This animation has been aligned on stars faintly visible in the background. Pluto's path appears to curve against the background stars because of the gravitational influence of Charon; the two similar-sized worlds mutually orbit a point well outside of Pluto, rotating around the system barycenter once in seven days. Charon is not visible in the animation initially because it is out of frame, and later because its thin crescent is too faint.

NASA / JHUAPL / SwRI / Allen Perkins

Here, the animation frames have been stacked, to highlight Pluto's curving path against the background stars.

Departing Pluto (stacked frames)

NASA / JHUAPL / SwRI / Allen Perkins / "fredk"

Departing Pluto (stacked frames)


Original image data dated on or about July 21, 2015.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. For uses not allowed by that license, contact us to request publication permission from the copyright holder: Allen Perkins


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