University of Illinois at Chicago

In the heart of Pluto, some of the youngest terrain in the solar system

In the heart of Pluto, some of the youngest terrain in the solar system

When NASA’s New Horizons Spacecraft beamed back the first close-up images of Pluto’s surface in July of 2015, scientists were flabbergasted.

In those early, dizzying days last summer, the cold, distant dwarf planet was revealed to be a diverse and geologically active world with wide flat plains, towering mountains, rounded hills and a hazy atmosphere.  

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Almost all of it was unexpected, but one area in particular had researchers stumped. It was a bright sheet of nitrogen ice containing a...

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