NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft has been traveling for almost ten years and over three billion miles toward the outer reaches of the solar system. It is currently on the final leg of its journey to Pluto, which was discovered at Lowell Observatory by Clyde Tombaugh in 1930. Thus, we have dubbed 2015 the Year of Pluto. Throughout the year Lowell will present special programming to celebrate this monumental event and will incorporate the hashtag #YearOfPluto on social media. Our upcoming Year of Pluto events are listed below. Learn more about the discovery of Pluto here.
Upcoming Year of Pluto events at Lowell Observatory
Pluto at 85: From Discovery to New Horizons Exhibit Opening
This new exhibit will answer all the questions you have about Pluto, from why we were searching for a planet, to what it means to be a “planet” and what we might find when we arrive.
Featured Speaker Dr. Gerard van Belle – The Pluto Vote: One Astronomer’s Personal Story
The 2006 vote on the planetary status of Pluto has had a long-lasting reverberation throughout astronomy. With an outcome that remains controversial both in the public eye and within the professional community, the debate on what to call this world remains a lively one. Dr. van Belle’s own accidental involvement in this question has its own amusing tall tale, which he will recount along the way to re-examining a question: What is a planet, and why do we care?
Pluto Discovery Walking Tour
Follow in the footsteps of Clyde Tombaugh, visiting several sites at Lowell and in downtown Flagstaff where Tombaugh went the day he discovered Pluto.
Lowell Observatory’s Annual Gala
Celebrate Pluto and Beyond at our 4th Annual Gala.
NASA New Horizons Pluto Encounter
New Horizons will make its closest approach to Pluto.
Festival of Science & Flagstaff Star Party
Lowell will host several hands-on activities during the 10-day Festival, which runs from September 18-27.