January 1, 2019. New Horizons, Nasa‘s spacecraft, made history, achieving a successful flyby of the most distant space object ever reached, 6.5 billion kilometers (4 billion miles) away. Likely coalesced more than 4.5 billion years ago, iced together in the Edgeworth-Kuiper Belt, also termed Trans-Neptunian Region of our solar system, two round balls (some liken the formation to a space snowman) are officially designated as 2014 MU69, but more lyrically named “Ultima Thule.” Scientifically, this new place in space may yield valuable data about how planets were formed, including Earth. While many know the meaning of Ultima (name of the larger part), Thule merits further comment: the name is a Latin phrase meaning a place beyond the known world.
Amos, Jonathan. “Nasa’s New Horizons: ‘Snowman’ shape of distant Ultima Thule revealed.” 2 January 2019, BBC.
Chang, Kenneth. “Snowman-like Photo of Ultima Thule Sent Home by NASA’s New Horizons Spacecraft.” 2 January 2019. The New York Times.
NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute. “Ultima Thule in 3D.” 1 January 2019 historical date; published 3 January 2019. https://solarsystem.nasa.gov/resources/2237/ultima-thule-in-3d/
Building the World Blog by Kathleen Lusk Brooke and Zoe G Quinn is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported Lice