Astonomers, using the Hubble Space Telescope, have identified a new moon orbiting Pluto, which they’d previously demoted from a planet, to a “dwarf” planet for reasons known only to themselves. The new moon, whose discovery was announced on Monday, has tentatively been named P4. It’s size is estimated between 13 and 34 kilometers.
It is the fourth moon to Pluto, adding to the known Hydra, Nix and Charon moons. There is an official mission with a spacecraft called New Horizons, which will probe Pluto further in 2015. Its seven instruments will carry out detailed mapping of the object’s surface features, composition and atmosphere.
The New Horizons spacecraft has already flown by Uranus on March 18th but it didn’t probe it as it was in hibernation mode.