Breathtaking Video Animation of the New Horizons Pluto Flyby

You can now experience a spacecraft view of the Pluto flyby thanks to a new and amazing animation sequence put together by Björn Jónsson using New Horizons flyby images. The video animation compresses the 2 hours it took the New Horizons spacecraft to approach and pass Pluto into a mere 16 seconds.

In the video description, Jónsson adds that "the time covered is 09:35 to 13:35 (closest approach occurred near 11:50). Pluto's atmosphere is included and should be fairly realistic from about 10 seconds into the animation and to the end. Earlier it is largely just guesswork that can be improved in the future once all data has been downlinked from the spacecraft. Light from Pluto's satellite Charon illuminates Pluto's night side but is exaggerated here, in reality it would be only barely visible or not visible at all. The field of view is 12.5 degrees."

On another note, we are eagerly awaiting for new images taken by New Horizons during the flyby. With only 5% of the data returned to Earth, the best is yet to come. But we will have to wait until September 14. In the meantime we are working on a few articles to provide additional background on the New Horizons mission and the wonderful science being done.

Help Us Reach 10,000 Votes

We need your help to reach 10,000 votes in our "Is Pluto a Planet" poll. Over 9,500 votes have been cast, we are so close. Less than 500 votes, and we will reach our goal! This will send a strong voice to the International Astronomical Union (IAU).

Simply tell your friends to cast their vote HERE. Votes can also be cast by downloading the free Pluto Safari app and using the in-app poll. It's that easy. Thank you so much!

To access the full features of Pluto Safari please download the FREE app for iOS from the Apple App Store or Pluto Safari: New Horizons for Android from Google Play.

Alternatively, if you have SkySafari or Pluto Safari installed you could download the simulation settings file here.