Tuesday, May 10, 2016
4:00 pm
South Mudd 365

Planetary Science Seminar

Geophysics at Pluto and Charon: A first look
Francis Nimmo, Professor, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, UC Santa Cruz

The New Horizons spacecraft encountered Pluto and Charon in July 2015. I will provide a brief overview of some key discoveries, and then discuss two geophysical topics in more detail. The first concerns the determination of the radius, bulk density and degree of flattening of Pluto and Charon. These measurements constrain the origin and thermal evolution of the bodies. The second concerns the potential for Pluto to have experienced true polar wander, and the consequences for its internal structure and evolution.

Contact Chris Spalding cspaldin@caltech.edu
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