Questions tagged [2014-mu69]

(486958) 2014 MU69, nicknamed Ultima Thule, a trans-Neptunian object (TNO) in the Kuiper belt, the target of the New Horizons spacecraft after its flyby of Pluto

7
votes
2answers
726 views

How (the heck) can 2014 MU69's orbit be know well enough for a close flyby by New Horizons?

The object 2014 MU69 is much smaller and dimmer than Pluto. Even as New Horizons approaches, it will be much harder for its 8.2 inch aperture, cooled CCD long range imager LORRI to get a fix on it ...
8
votes
1answer
333 views

Besides retarded gravitation, anything else to worry about when calculating MU69's orbit from scratch?

For fun I'd like to use Hubble Astrometric data for example the observations listed at the bottom here to numerically estimate the orbit of 2014 MU69 as well as its uncertainties. My plan is to use ...
6
votes
1answer
538 views

Timing shadows from the Kuiper belt! Any news? Did it work?

update 24-Jun-2017: SOFIA Arrives in New Zealand to Observe Southern Skies There are plans to fly SOFIA through another predicted occultation path on July 17. SOFIA is a huge (2.5 meter dia.) infrared ...
6
votes
1answer
532 views

What angular resolution is expected during New Horizon's flyby of Ultima Thule?

Ultima Thule is thought to be about 20 miles (30 km) across. However, I can't seem to find any information about approach distance or typical image resolution of New Horizons in regards to this second ...
4
votes
1answer
256 views

How to calculate New Horizons' MVIC camera max resolution at Pluto and Ultima Thule?

I am in trouble calculating the ground resolution of MVIC instrument onboard New Horizons; I found several documents about MVIC specs, like this one: http://www.boulder.swri.edu/pkb/ssr/ssr-payload-...
3
votes
1answer
231 views

Will the upcoming observations of occultation by “Ultima Thule” (2014 MU69) be of a single object, or two?

According to Phys.org's New Horizons team prepares for stellar occultation ahead of Ultima Thule flyby: "Gathering occultation data is an incredibly difficult task," said New Horizons occultation ...
3
votes
1answer
99 views

Does JPL's Horizons have better MU69 state vectors for the New Horizons flyby somewhere?

Today I downloaded the state vectors for New Horizons and MU69 Ultima Thule and subtracted their positions. The two new get closer than about 596,000 kilometers. The New Horizions output header says: ...
10
votes
2answers
353 views

How close to 2014 MU₆₉ can New Horizons get?

New Horizons is en-route to 2014 MU₆₉, where it is planned to fly by 1 January 2019. Considering fuel and other considerations, how close to 2014 MU₆₉ can it get? (At the time of writing, October ...
27
votes
6answers
7k views

Why no recent information about or photos of Ultima Thule?

It's been two weeks since New Horizons flew past Ultima Thule but the most recent news on the Johns Hopkins site is dated the fourth of January The image gallery has had no new pictures since the ...
17
votes
5answers
4k views

Will there be back-side photos of Ultima Thule?

I understand the reason we're only getting data slowly from New Horizons, but I was wondering ... did the probe flip around to get hi-resolution photos of the back side of Ultima Thule as it passed? ...
4
votes
3answers
214 views

How does New Horizons handle unexpected gravitational effects near Ultima Thule?

What are the navigation techniques used to handle the aggregated unknown effect of gravity from local and distant matter for the New Horizons space probe when it intercepted Ultima-Thule ? I am ...
5
votes
0answers
158 views

Having deep space probes use AI to decide where to point their cameras?

With New Horizons on final approach to Ultima Thule (2014 MU69) it has been stated that some or all of the images returned may end up being blank due to the camera being pointed incorrectly because of ...