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Explore Community Corner
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Welcome to Explore Community Corner! This page features the latest NASA mission news and science related to the online portfolio of Explore topics, information related to current best practices in providing hands-on science programming in out-of-school time settings, spotlights on how Explore activities are being incorporated into library programs across the country, and opportunities and resources related to science programming in libraries. Community Corner serves as a way for you to connect your own efforts with others, through a wealth of resources available on the Explore website.

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New Horizons Spacecraft Crosses Neptune Orbit En Route to Pluto

Date: 08/26/2014
Category: Mission News & Science
By: Andy Shaner


NASA’s Pluto-bound New Horizons spacecraft has traversed the orbit of Neptune. This is its last major crossing en route to becoming the first probe to make a close encounter with distant Pluto on July 14, 2015.

The image above was taken by the New Horizons spacecraft. The bigger bright object is the planet Neptune and the smaller, dimmer object immediately to the upper-left of Neptune is its large moon Triton. Click on the image to view a larger version.

The sophisticated piano-sized spacecraft, which launched in January 2006, reached Neptune’s orbit -- nearly 2.75 billion miles from Earth -- in a record eight years and eight months. New Horizons’ milestone matches precisely the 25th anniversary of the historic encounter of NASA’s Voyager 2 spacecraft with Neptune on Aug. 25, 1989.

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