Shop Windows to the Universe

Hands On Mineral Identification helps you to identify over 14,500 minerals! By M. Darby Dyar, Ph.D. See our DVD collection.

Do you think that in about another century the human race will be able to travel to Pluto? How long would it take to travel to Pluto?

Pluto is the least studied of all the planets in our solar system. It wasn't even discovered until 1930. It takes over four hours for Pluto's light to reach us.

It would take us a lot longer than four hours to get to Pluto. It took the Voyager probes over 20 years to get to Pluto's neighborhood. The planets weren't aligned right for the Voyager probes to visit Pluto. So far, no man-made probe has ever visited the planet.

Within the next few years, scientists hope to be able to launch the Pluto-Kuiper Express. This probe is much smaller than either Voyager spacecraft and will be able to travel faster. It should reach Pluto in less than ten years.

Human travel to Pluto is out of the question, at least in the near future. It would take too long and be too hard to pack things like food for so many years. We need to be able to travel faster so the trip won't take so long. Then we'll send people to Pluto.


Submitted by Ashley (Tenessee, USA)
Submitted by Megan (Texas, USA)
(September 2, 1997)



Shop Windows to the Universe Science Store!

Learn about Earth and space science, and have fun while doing it! The games section of our online store includes a climate change card game and the Traveling Nitrogen game!

Windows to the Universe Community

News

Opportunities

You might also be interested in:

Happy Anniversary Voyager!

The Voyager program is celebrating its 20th anniversary. Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 were both launched in the summer of 1977. Their main mission was to explore Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. The Voyager...more

What are the retrograde motions of planets in the sky?

It depends on which type of motion you are asking about. If you take a birds-eye view from the top of the solar system all the planets orbit around the Sun in a counter-clockwise (or direct) direction....more

How do Astronauts Live in Space?

Almost everyone has a question or two about living in space. What do astronauts do in space? How do they do everyday things like eat, sleep and go to the bathroom? It's important to note that astronauts...more

How far is the Earth from the Sun, the Moon and all the other planets? How far are all of the planets from the Sun? Do you know of a software that tracks the planets in real-time?

There is a really neat internet program called Solar System Live that shows the position of all of the planets and the Sun for any given day. If you go to that page, you'll see an image similar to the...more

Is it really true that man never really walked on the Moon?

The picture of the American Flag (the one put there by the Apollo astronauts) is waving (or straight out) in the wind. How could that be possible if there is no atmosphere on the Moon? Was it some sort...more

How many planets orbit the sun?

I was wondering if there is a new planet? Are there planets (a tenth planet?) after Pluto belonging to our solar system? What are the names of the new planets discovered in the solar system? Are there...more

According to Stephen Hawking, any object with an energy which equals Plank's energy has to become a black hole.

If that is so, the energy released during the Big Bang must have created many such black holes. Therefore most of the Energy of the Big bang must have disappeared in that form. Then how did the Universe...more

Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part is sponsored in part through grants from federal agencies (NASA and NOAA), and partnerships with affiliated organizations, including the American Geophysical Union, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Earth System Information Partnership, the American Meteorological Society, the National Center for Science Education, and TERC. The American Geophysical Union and the American Geosciences Institute are Windows to the Universe Founding Partners. NESTA welcomes new Institutional Affiliates in support of our ongoing programs, as well as collaborations on new projects. Contact NESTA for more information. NASA ESIP NCSE HHMI AGU AGI AMS NOAA