Does Pluto have a core?

We find out if there’s a heart to this dwarf planet

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Pluto is thought to have a rocky core. Image Credit: NASA

Pluto is thought to have a rocky core. Image Credit: NASA

Asked by Brandon Clews

We believe so. It’s thought that Pluto most likely has a rocky core surrounded by a shell of water and nitrogen ice. Planetary scientists have been able to measure the dwarf planet’s density using the Hubble Space Telescope to work out this world’s makeup and we currently understand Pluto’s internal composition to be roughly 70 per cent rock and 30 per cent ice. Around Pluto is a thin atmosphere made up of nitrogen, methane and carbon monoxide gases.

NASA spacecraft New Horizons is currently making its way to the dwarf planet and is scheduled to reach it in July 2015.

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