Headlines > News > Flying Past Neptune's Moon Triton

Flying Past Neptune's Moon Triton

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Tue Aug 26, 2014 7:50 am via: NASA
Share
More share options
Tools
Tags

What would it look like to fly past Triton, the largest moon of planet Neptune? Only one spacecraft has ever done this — and now, for the first time, images of this dramatic encounter have been gathered into a movie. On 1989 August 25, the Voyager 2 spacecraft shot through the Neptune system with cameras blazing.

Triton is slightly smaller than Earth’s Moon but has ice volcanoes and a surface rich in frozen nitrogen. The first sequence in the video shows Voyager’s approach to Triton, which, despite its unusual green tint, appears in approximately true color. The mysterious terrain seen under the spacecraft soon changed from light to dark, with the terminator of night soon crossing underneath.

After closest approach, Voyager pivoted to see the departing moon, now visible as a diminishing crescent. Next July, assuming all goes well, the robotic New Horizons spacecraft will make a similar flight past Pluto, an orb of similar size to Triton.

No comments
Start the ball rolling by posting a comment on this article!
Leave a reply
You must be logged in to post a comment.
© 2014 The International Space Fellowship, developed by Gabitasoft Interactive. All Rights Reserved.  Privacy Policy | Terms of Use