February 4, 2010
Posted: 03:19 PM ET
NASA released new photos today of everyone's favorite former planet: Pluto.
The space agency says the photos, which were taken in the early 2000s by the Hubble Space Telescope, are the "most detailed and dramatic images ever taken of the distant dwarf planet."
"The Hubble pictures confirm Pluto is a dynamic world that undergoes dramatic atmospheric changes not simply a ball of ice and rock," NASA says in a news release.
But the new glamour shots won't be enough to get Pluto registered again as a planet.
The pictures come just as Pluto is heading into a new phase of its 248-year orbit around the sun, NASA says:
Space.com says new colors and features of Pluto came to light in the photos:
Pluto lost its status as our solar system's ninth planet in 2006 when an international group of scientists decided that it was too small and too distant to be considered a member of the Earth's solar-system family.
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