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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Pluto's Craters from New Horizons

I processed this image to emphasize, that (contrary to popular belief), there actually ARE craters on Pluto! Apparently, there is some geological activity going on at the surface involving ice - and, possibly, some degree of erosion.

It is my opinion that, since Pluto wasn't one of the original planets of the solar system during its formation but, rather, was gravitationally captured at some point afterward, (evidenced by its highly inclined orbital plane), it didn't experience the early period of bombardment by rogue asteroids and other debris (remnants of the solar system's formation), that the terrestrial planets did, and as our moon's surface reveals. Earth suffered as much of the bombardment as did the moon, but, due to atmospheric and geologic erosion, much of the impact evidence has disappeared over the eons since, whereas the moon, being nearly geologically inactive and possessing no significant atmosphere, has preserved its geologic past.

New Horizons Image of Pluto in False Color.
New Horizons Image of Pluto in False Color.

If Pluto was present during part of the bombardment period, it, too, may have suffered impacts, but, like Earth, much of that evidence has been eroded away, hence, the scarcity of impact craters at its surface.

Dale Alan Bryant
Senior Contributing Science Writer

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