(ORDO NEWS) — Pluto Day is celebrated on February 18, when astronomer Clyde Tombaugh discovered the ninth planet in the solar system in 1930.
Pluto had a difficult fate, but we invite you to find out the most interesting facts about this planet. Why was Pluto called that? What size is he and who did he name? All this is in our collection.
1- Pluto was named by an 11-year-old girl
When Venice’s grandfather Bernie broke the news of the newly discovered planet to her, she suggested naming it Pluto, after the Roman god of the Underworld.
It seemed like an appropriate name because the planet Pluto, like God, was in the far reaches of the solar system. Her grandfather suggested the name to a friend who was a professor of astronomy at Oxford University.
2- Pluto is smaller than Earth’s moon, but larger than previously thought
Pluto’s diameter is 2,370 km, according to the latest New Horizons measurements, while Earth’s moon is 3,475 km in diameter. Pluto is 18.5% the size of Earth.
3- There is a heart-shaped formation on the surface of Pluto
Images released by NASA from the New Horizons probe show a heart-shaped formation about 1,600 kilometers in diameter.
According to NASA, “much of the inside of the heart looks remarkably cloudy, possibly a sign of ongoing geological processes.”
4- Not everyone agrees with Pluto’s dwarf planet status
The news that Pluto appeared to be larger than expected in the New Horizons images was especially exciting for Pluto supporters.
Supporters of the point of view that Pluto is a full-fledged planet, believe that it has become a dwarf planet largely due to its size.
However, in reality, Pluto was given the status of a dwarf planet because it is simply not unique. Pluto is just the brightest element in the Kuiper Belt, which has other similar objects.
5- New Horizons, the first vessel designed to study Pluto’s environment
The New Horizons probe cost $700 million, but at 450 kg it is a little larger than a piano. The spacecraft completed a nine-year, 4.8 billion-kilometer journey to Pluto in 2015, capturing the most detailed images of Pluto to date.
Disney’s dog Pluto was named after the planet
Disney’s dog Pluto debuted on screen the same year the former planet was discovered, but contrary to popular belief, the dog was named after Pluto, not the other way around.
Disney animators have speculated that Walt Disney chose the name to, as it is now called, “hype” on a highly publicized topic.
Contact us: [email protected]