Lifestyle

These Are The Best Photos From NASA's 3-Billion-Mile Trip To Pluto

After nearly a decade-long journey and three billion miles, NASA's New Horizons spacecraft has finally made its closest approach to its final destination: Pluto. At 7:49 AM ET—about one minute faster than initially predicted when the craft was launched in January 2006—New Horizons came within 7,500 miles of the surface of the dwarf planet (which is apparently what we're calling it now. You'll always be a full planet in my book, Pluto).  Check out these incredible photos relayed back to Earth from the journey, and head straight to NASA's New Horizons page here for continuous updates.

The New Horizons spacecraft getting a tuneup before launch.

The craft was launched on January 19, 2006.

The images have been rendered both in color, like this one, and without, like those below. 

Pluto has five known moons. Pictured here is Pluto and its largest moon, Charon.

From the journey, we've finally learned the exact sizes of Pluto and Charon. Obviously, this picture is a rendering.

This artist's rendering shows New Horizons on its approach to Pluto. 


Want more of the Culture you actually care about delivered straight to your inbox? Click here to sign up for our daily email.