Scientists in the Field
Spiral Notebook
New Year, New Books Part 3
by Lily Kessinger
January 21, 2016
 
New Year, New Books Part 3
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Mission to Pluto: The First Visit to an Ice Dwarf and the Kuiper Belt by Mary Kay Carson with photographs by Tom Uhlman will be available Fall 2016 and follows the exciting journey of New Horizons–a spacecraft the size of a piano–as it makes its way to the previously unexplored and mysterious outer reaches of our solar system.

Below, author Mary Kay Carson tells us what it was like at NASA headquarters during the New Horizons flyby of Pluto:

Being at the flyby in July was a real once in a lifetime experience! As you can see by the images, it was an excited crowd and even a few famous folks attended too—including Bill Nye the Science Guy. I got to hear the discoverer of Charon, Hames Christy, explain how to pronounce the moon’s name with his wife by his side. She said that while most men promise their wives the moon, her husband delivered! Clyde Tombaugh’s kids were there, too. It was emotional because the mission has been more than a quarter century in the making and the spacecraft launched a decade ago. The team has gone young scientists of the 1980s to grandparents! It’s hard to imagine how dedicated Alan Stern and other long-time members of the New Horizons team have been all these years. I barely got to know them, but felt so happy for each and every one that this small spacecraft had been able to be built, launch, travel for a decade, perform its duties flawlessly, and send back images and data about Pluto, Charon, and it’s four mini-moons.  New Horizons turned Pluto into a real world with mountains and ice plains, a place of variety and color. How fabulous!!

And in general, there’s a lot happening still with the mission!

– A stamp comes out this summer to celebrate the mission and replace the old “Not Yet Explored” Pluto 1991 stamp (I’ve got one!)

– Both the website for the mission and NASA’s webpage are always having new stuff on them—plus they’ve always got lots of pics/graphics that are eye-candy: visit here and here including these cool infographics.

 

That’s it for our “New Year, New Books” installments and it looks like our reading list for 2016 is shaping up to be out of this world (ha!). Happy reading and don’t forget to stop by Adventure Notes for more updates throughout the year!

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