NSN Webinars: New Horizons: Beyond Pluto
The NASA Night Sky Network joined Orkan Umurhan on Wednesday, October 16.  as he brought us the latest information about the New Horizons mission and its flyby of the distant Kuiper Belt object 2014 MU69. 

You can find more info and the recording (available soon) for this webinar via the links on this resource page

About New Horizons: Beyond Pluto

2014 MU69 is located in the Kuiper Belt, beyond the orbit of Neptune. At 12:33 a.m. (EST) on January 1, 2019, New Horizons flew just 2,200 miles (3,500) kilometers from the object's surface, when it was about 4 billion miles (6.6 billion kilometers) from the Sun -- the most distant planetary flyby in history and the first close-up look at a solar system object of this type.

The object is the first unquestionably primordial contact binary ever explored. Approach pictures hinted at a strange, snowman-like shape, but further analysis of images, taken near closest approach, uncovered just how unusual the KBO's shape really is. At 22 miles (35 kilometers) long, the binary consists of a large, flat lobe (nicknamed "Ultima") connected to a smaller, rounder lobe (nicknamed "Thule").

Flyby data transmission continues, with all data expected on the ground by late summer 2020.

About Dr. Orkan Umurhan
Dr. Umurhan's research focuses on evolutionary processes both on planetary surfaces and in protoplanetary disks. Dr. Umurhan joined the New Horizons Geology and Geophysics Investigation Team in June of 2013, providing mathematical modeling framework for the Pluto system. Dr. Umurhan regularly writes blogposts for NASA about New Horizons and he is also a co-author on a graduate level textbook on fluid dynamics for physicists.

Registration and More Information
Additonal information about the New Horizons mission and our speaker are available on the Beyond Pluto webinar page .The recording will also be posted afterwards to the webinar page and NSN YouTube page.

Upcoming Webinars (all webinars are at 6pm PT/9pm ET)

Novermber 18: Voyager Mission, with Trina Ray
December 17: The Best of Astronomy Picture of the Day in 2019, with Robert Neimeroff
Previous NSN Webinars
Artist's conception of the Mars 2020 rover on Mars
Credit: NASA and Mitch Schulte
The NASA Night Sky Network heard from Dr. Mitch Schultz on September 26 for an update on the Mars 2020 Rover mission to Mars. NSN members can find the webinar recording along with related resources for this webinar on this dedicated outreach resource page

Click here to see a list of all previous webinars

All past webinars are also available on the NSN YouTube page
Last updated: September 26, 2019
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