New Horizons go on its adventurous space trip and release the secrets of space. Now a view in a new photo is termed as the twilight zone of Pluto by NASA. But does the photo reveal the clouds on Pluto? It has not been proven yet.
Increadable views of the space make us think more and more about it and the dwarf planet catches our attention by its new photos nowadays. During its closest approach to Pluto, NASA’s New Horizons took a photo from a distance of about 12,550 kilometers from surface. NASA termed this view as the Twilight Zone of Pluto. The dwarf planet’s so-called “twilight zone show spectacular topography of Pluto. NASA officials say "The topography here appears quite rugged, and broad valleys and sharp peaks with relief totaling 3 miles (5 kilometers) are apparent."
NASA states that the star of the image is the cloud visible. Researchers say that it may be a discrete, low-lying cloud in Pluto’s atmosphere; if so it would be the only one yet identified in New Horizons imagery. “Atmospheric models suggest that methane clouds can occasionally form in Pluto’s atmosphere,” the statement said. Unlike Earth, the dwarf planet’s atmosphere is made of a mixture of nitrogen, methane, and carbon monoxide. The majority of these gases vaporize from the ice sheets coating the surface, which are also visible in the photo. New Horizons still send back more photos and data and they will keep on reaching us beyond fall this year. The slow rate of transmission is due to the vast distance between the spacecraft and Earth, which considerably weakens radio signal.
"Atmospheric models suggest that methane clouds can occasionally form in Pluto's atmosphere," said NASA in a statement. NASA said that the detailed photo provides its scientists with anchor points to further understand the terrain and mysterious topography of Pluto. Thanks to the technology brought by New Horizon's MVIC camera, a new discovery may just be made by NASA scientists.
Due to the position of the New Horizon spacecraft when the photo was taken, it amplified the atmosphere of Pluto showing the haze layers and the ice plains known as Sputnik Planun and the mountains across the top called Norgay Montes.
According to experts, this photo is one of the most valuable shots released by NASA, and possibly one of the best photographs of the former planet this generation will see.