Celebrate Mission to Pluto at the Reuben Fleet Science Center

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Local space enthusiasts can celebrate Pluto at Reuben H. Fleet’s science center Tuesday night.

Attendees of the Science Center’s Pluto Fly-by party will have the chance to see New Horizon’s images of Pluto and the activities at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab through a live stream.

NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft reached its closest approach to Pluto on the morning of July 14 after a nine-and-a-half-year journey. Launched in January 2006, the spacecraft will provide never before seen close-up views of dwarf planet.

NASA Solar System Ambassador Jerry Hillburn and the Science Center’s resident astronomer Dr. Lisa Will are hosting the event, and as well as the live feed, they hope to get an exclusive interview with one the researchers for the mission.

New Horizons is NASA’s first mission to Pluto and the Kuiper Belt. It is also the fastest mission ever launched with the farthest target destination. The spacecraft’s main goals are to see how Pluto fits in with other planets in our Solar System and discover more about the dwarf planet itself including the makeup of its atmosphere and what its surface looks like.

The spacecraft includes infrared and ultraviolet imaging spectrometers, telescope camera, and a dust counter built by students to measure the amount of dust collected by New Horizons on its journey.

The party goes from 6:30 pm to 8 pm Tuesday, July 14 at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center in Balboa Park in the Heikoff Giant Dome Theater.

Admission for Fleet Members is $12.95 for adults, $11.95 for seniors and $10.95 for children 12 and under.

Admission for nonmembers is $16.95 for adults, $15.95 for seniors and $14.95 for children 12 and under.

Buying tickets ahead of time is recommended because of limited seating. Tickets can be purchased by calling (619) 685-5728 or by visiting its website.

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