Author Topic: A single year on Pluto is longer than the whole history of the US  (Read 310 times)

SHANDAL

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REUTERS/NASA/Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute An artists impression of NASAs New Horizons spacecraft encountering Pluto and its largest moon, Charon.
Here's a fairly astounding fact: The entire history of the United States has unfolded in the time it's taken Pluto to orbit the Sun once.

The United States has been around for 238 years. A year on Pluto is 248 years. (Thanks to Corey Powell for pointing out this map, recently published by the New Horizons team.)

NASA's New Horizons probe is now closing in on Pluto, due to reach it on Tuesday after a nine-year journey. And though that might seem like a long time, the truth is that Pluto has been traveling towards this rendezvous for much, much longer.

Related NASA's New Horizons mission to Pluto, explained

The last time Pluto was in its current position in 1768 humans were totally unaware of its existence (it was discovered in 1930). At the time, humans still hadn't figured out how species evolve, how germs transmit diseases, or how the Earth's tectonic plates slide around. Aviation was still decades away and spaceflight wouldn't happen for nearly 200 years.

All of which is to say: it's pretty amazing that, this time around, Pluto will be visited by a tiny robot sent by a curious species of apes three billion miles away. A lot can change in a single orbit.

SHANDAL

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Re: A single year on Pluto is longer than the whole history of the US
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2015, 04:53:49 AM »
« Last Edit: July 16, 2015, 04:55:23 AM by SHANDAL »

 

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