Astronomy is awesome

The New Horizons spacecraft is about 60 million miles from Pluto and closing fast. Here’s the latest from NASA, showing Pluto and Charon rotating around each other:


The key here is around each other… because Charon is so big compared to Pluto, they rotate around a barycenter which is actually in the space between them. (Almost all planet-moon systems have a barycenter very near the center of the planet.)

It’s so cool to see these guys after almost a century when we could only see them as faint blobs of light. I’m excited for the July flyby when New Horizons is close enough to resolve surface features on Pluto. I love astronomy.