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Charon, New Horizons image

Charon, New Horizons image

C026/4500

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Credit

NASA, JOHNS HOPKINS UNIV. / APL, SOUTHWEST RESEARCH INSTITUTE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA, JOHNS HOPKINS UNIV. / APL, SOUTHWEST RESEARCH INSTITUTE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

New Horizons image of Pluto's largest moon Charon, taken just before the spcecraft's closest approach. This enhanced colour image combines blue, red and infrared images to reveal the variations across Charon's Pluto-facing surface. Most notably a reddish north polar region informally named Mordor Macula. A belt of fractures and canyons across the moon measuring more than 1,600 kilometres indicate a huge geological upheaval in the past. The belt also seems to separate smooth southern plains from varied northern terrain. New Horizons has spent nine and a half years travelling the nearly five billion kilometres to Pluto. Image obtained by the spacecraft's Ralph/Multispectral Visual Imaging Camera (MVIC) on 14th July 2015.

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