New Horizons mission to Comet Pluto?

pluto solar wind interaction surpriseThe New Horizons mission to Pluto, Charon and other Kuiper Belt Objects will be investigating Pluto’s electrical connection with our Sun and Solar System, through the Suns plasma (ionized gas) or solar wind as its called.

What is interesting is they will be looking to see if Pluto is a ‘comet’ like planet.

Comet Pluto?

new horizons comet pluto plasma
Comet Pluto?
New Horizons SWAP instrument (Solar Wind Around Pluto) is designed to observe low energy plasma events and will hopefully …

measure the interactions of Pluto and Charon with the solar wind, the high-speed stream of charged particles flowing out from the Sun. Understanding these interactions will expand our knowledge of the astrophysical processes affecting these bodies and that part of the solar system.

McComas expects solar wind interactions at Pluto to lie somewhere between the strong and weak extremes.

SWAP would go on to take similar measurements at Charon and at least one Kuiper Belt object; however, the team expects those interactions to be much weaker simply because the atmospheres of these objects are likely to be less extensive and not likely to emit much material. Another of the many Pluto mysteries is where the interactions of the solar wind will occur around the planet
Where the Sun and Ice Worlds Meet

Pluto’s interaction with the solar wind – very small or surprisingly large?

NASA are expecting Pluto to have a very small interaction with the Suns solar wind (plasma). They will be surprised by not only Pluto but Charon and perhaps any other Kuiper Belt Object they visit.

The incredible distance of Pluto from the Sun required that the SWAP team build the largest aperture instrument ever used to measure the solar wind. It would allow SWAP to make measurements even when the solar wind is very tenuous. The instrument also combines a retarding potential analyzer (RPA) with an electrostatic analyzer (ESA) to enable extremely fine, accurate energy measurements of the solar wind.

“Should the interaction between Pluto and the solar wind turn out to be very small, the RPA and ESA combination will allow us to measure minute changes in solar wind speed,” says Scott Weidner, the SWAP instrument manager and an SwRI principal scientist.
Where the Sun and Ice Worlds Meet

If it is an Electric Universe then there should be some form of circuit connection between Pluto and its plasma environment and the solar system and sun.