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The Bruce Murray Space Image Library

Pluto's blue skies

Filed under trans-neptunian objects, New Horizons, pretty pictures, Pluto, global views

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Pluto's blue skies Pluto’s haze layer shows its blue color in this picture taken by the New Horizons Ralph/Multispectral Visible Imaging Camera (MVIC). The high-altitude haze is thought to be similar in nature to that seen at Saturn’s moon Titan. The source of both hazes likely involves sunlight-initiated chemical reactions of nitrogen and methane, leading to relatively small, soot-like particles (called tholins) that grow as they settle toward the surface. This image was generated by software that combines information from blue, red and near-infrared images to replicate the color a human eye would perceive as closely as possible.


Original image data dated on or about July 14, 2015.

Most NASA images are in the public domain. Reuse of this image is governed by NASA's image use policy.


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