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News Release Archive:

News Release 118 of 966

July 11, 2012 11:30 AM (EDT)

News Release Number: STScI-2012-32

Hubble Discovers a Fifth Moon Orbiting Pluto

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Image: Hubble Discovers a Fifth Moon Orbiting Pluto

Hubble Discovers a Fifth Moon Orbiting PlutoSTScI-PRC2012-32

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ABOUT THIS IMAGE:

This image, taken by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, shows five moons orbiting the distant, icy dwarf planet Pluto.

The green circle marks the newly discovered moon, designated P5, as photographed by Hubble's Wide Field Camera 3 on July 7.

Other observations that collectively show the moon's orbital motion were taken on June 26, 27, 29, and July 9, 2012.

The moon is estimated to be 6 to 15 miles across. It is in a 58,000-mile-diameter circular orbit around Pluto that is assumed to be co-planar with the other satellites in the system.

The observations will help scientists in their planning for the July 2015 flyby of Pluto by NASA's New Horizons spacecraft.

Object Names: P5, S/2012 (134340) 1

Image Type: Astronomical/Annotated

Credit: NASA, ESA, and M. Showalter (SETI Institute)

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Hubble Discovers a Fifth Moon Orbiting Pluto (Unannotated) Image Type: Astronomical Hubble Discovers a Fifth Moon Orbiting Pluto (Unannotated)

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