Hey There, Pluto!
By Assata Griggs

We all think that traveling for a long period of time without refilling for gas or taking ANY breaks is beyond impossible. Believe it or not the New Horizons spacecraft has proved many of us wrong. This spacecraft was sent out in 2006 to get a closer look at the now dwarf planet Pluto. When the spacecraft was actually sent into space Pluto was still known as a planet. This spacecraft has been traveling for 3 billion miles and nine years!  That’s older than some of our LifeCampers!  Today, the space agency’s unmanned New Horizons spacecraft is at the edge of our solar system. When the spacecraft got to Pluto, we were able to see the dwarf planet’s ice cap made up of frozen nitrogen and methane. The spacecraft came within 8,000 miles of touching Pluto. While all of that time was passing by the spacecraft found new facts about Pluto, which we never knew before. Pluto is actually 44 miles bigger in diameter than originally thought, has nitrogen seeping out of it, and has cliffs and craters.  Pluto’s 5 moons are called Styx, Hydra, Nix, Charon, and Kerberos.  New Horizons found that some of its moons are covered in craters.  Everyday New Horizons is sending us new mind blowing information from a dwarf planet we are just beginning to learn about!