Pluto Comes Into Focus

With the arrival of the New Horizons probe, it’s the planetary reject’s time to shine.

RELATED TAGS: PLUTO, NEW HORIZONS
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Being stripped of planetary status may be the best thing that ever happened to Pluto. For decades, it seemed like little more than a celestial misfit, much farther out than the solid, Earth-like worlds and far smaller than the giant, gassy ones. But in the nine years since Pluto’s demotion, astronomers have come to appreciate that its oddity is actually an indication of its importance. When the New Horizons spacecraft flies past Pluto on July 14, it will arrive not at the smallest planet ...
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