The online Slooh Community Observatory will discuss the latest close-up images of Pluto taken by the New Horizons probe, along with live observations of the dwarf planet by ground-based telescopes, in a live webcast today (July 15), and you can watch it live online.
The free webcast will air at 5:30 p.m. EDT (2130 GMT) on the the Slooh website (http://www.slooh.com), and feature analysis of the newest Pluto images from New Horizons. It will also include live views of Pluto taken through Slooh's remotely operated observatory in the Canary Islands, Spain.
The Pluto presentation - which can also be seen on Space.com, courtesy of Slooh - will include discussion of the new images by Slooh astronomers and special guests from the New Horizons science team. Before the Slooh webcast, at 3 p.m. EDT (1900 GMT), NASA is expected to unveil the latest Pluto images from New Horizons. You can watch that Pluto flyby update on Space.com as well, courtesy of NASA TV.
Those images, acquired during New Horizons' flyby of Pluto on Tuesday (July 14), are the closest and most detailed ever taken of the distant world.
"Over the past few months Pluto has been looming ever closer in the images from NASA's New Horizons probe," Slooh astronomer Will Gater said in a statement. "We've watched as tantalizing new features emerge into view on this enigmatic world, but now's the moment we've all been waiting for: our first fly-by of the dwarf planet and a chance to explore and study an object that's fascinated planetary scientists ever since its discovery."
The New Horizons spacecraft launched in January 2006 and whipped past Jupiter in 2007 on its way to Pluto. On Tuesday, the probe made its closest approach to the dwarf planet, aiming its instruments at the icy body for a thorough investigation. Data from the flyby will be sent to Earth over the course of the next 16 months.