Before New Horizons started sending back data and close-up images of Pluto, we barely knew the dwarf planet, Engadget reports. We were like a love-sick fool who could only observe from afar. Now, the New Horizons scientists have enough material to publish five new papers that detail the probe's findings on the dwarf planet and its moons in Science. One of its most important discoveries is that Pluto has been geologically active for 4 billion years. Its heart-shaped regions western lobe, the Sputnik Planum, however, is relatively young at only 10-million-years-old.
The reason why Sputnik Planum is all smooth and intact is because the dwarf planet doesn't release as much nitrogen into the atmosphere as we thought. One of the possible explanations for that is that its upper atmospheric temperature is about 70 degrees Fahrenheit colder than scientists assumed in the past.