After having recently released a psychedelic picture of Pluto, NASA is at again, only this time, transforming images captured by the New Horizons spacecraft to illustrate a day on the planet as well as its largest moon, Charon.
The images, which were captured with the ship’s Ralph/Multispectral Visible Imaging Camera and its Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI), were taken while New Horizons approached the planet back in July of this year.
The New Horizons spacecraft reached its closest point to the planet on July 14, 2015.
According to NASA, the images captured as well as similar ones reveal numerous details about the planet, such as the differences between its “far side” and encounter hemispheres.
These images and others like them reveal many details about Pluto, including the differences between the encounter hemisphere and the so-called “far side” hemisphere seen only at lower resolution. Dimples in the bottom (south) edge of Pluto’s disk are artifacts of the way the images were combined to create these composites.
Like the dwarf planet it orbits, a day on Charon is the equivalent to roughly six and a half days on Earth. Like the images captured by New Horizons of the planet itself, images of Charon show the moon throughout the course of an entire day.
The Pluto images were captured between July 7 and July 13 at a range of 5 million to 400,000 miles.
Data from the New Horizons probe, which was launched back in 2006, revealed last month the possibility that Pluto has a heat source other than its sun.