NASA to Talk Pluto & Beyond on Facebook Today: Watch Live

2014 MU69
Artist's conception of NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft encountering a Kuiper Belt object, part of an extended mission after the spacecraft’s July 2015 Pluto flyby. New Horizons is set to fly past 2014 MU69 – a KBO currently about a billion miles (1.6 billion kilometers) beyond Pluto, on Jan. 1, 2019. (Image credit: NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI)

Happy birthday, New Horizons! Today marks the 11th anniversary of the launch of NASA's New Horizons spacecraft, which flew by Pluto in 2015. To celebrate, the New Horizons team is hosting a live webcast today at 4 p.m. EST (2100 GMT) to discuss the historic Pluto flyby and the tantalizing adventures that still lie ahead.

Now hundreds of millions of miles past Pluto, the spacecraft is currently on its way toward the outskirts of the solar system with its eyes set on another distant target: 2014 MU69, a small, icy rock inside the Kuiper Belt. It is scheduled to fly by there on Jan. 1, 2019. 

You can watch the New Horizons team's discussion on the New Horizons Facebook page. To ask a question, you can log in to Facebook and leave a comment on the live video there. You can also follow the event live here at, courtesy of NASA. [New Horizons' Epic Pluto Flyby: Complete Coverage]

During the webcast, several team members will speak about the mission's biggest discoveries so far. Some contenders on that list may include Pluto's giant, heart-shaped feature known as Sputnik Planitia, its underground ocean, and the strange relationship between Pluto and Charon, its largest moon.

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Hanneke Weitering
Contributing expert

Hanneke Weitering is a multimedia journalist in the Pacific Northwest reporting on the future of aviation at and Aviation International News and was previously the Editor for Spaceflight and Astronomy news here at As an editor with over 10 years of experience in science journalism she has previously written for Scholastic Classroom Magazines, MedPage Today and The Joint Institute for Computational Sciences at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. After studying physics at the University of Tennessee in her hometown of Knoxville, she earned her graduate degree in Science, Health and Environmental Reporting (SHERP) from New York University. Hanneke joined the team in 2016 as a staff writer and producer, covering topics including spaceflight and astronomy. She currently lives in Seattle, home of the Space Needle, with her cat and two snakes. In her spare time, Hanneke enjoys exploring the Rocky Mountains, basking in nature and looking for dark skies to gaze at the cosmos.