Q:

How far is Pluto from Earth?

A:

Quick Answer

Pluto is about 2.6 billion miles from Earth, according to About.com. That distance is approximately 30 times greater than the distance between the Earth and the sun.

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How far is Pluto from Earth?
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Full Answer

Pluto is considered a "dwarf planet," according to NASA, because it is too small to move other objects out of its way. Pluto is 1,400 miles wide, which is about half the width of the United States. NASA also refers to Pluto as a "plutoid," a term that describes dwarf planets that are farther away than Neptune. Pluto orbits the sun, but, unlike most planets, the orbit is more elliptical in shape than circular, and the sun is not in the center of the orbit.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Why is Pluto cold?

    A:

    Pluto is cold because it is, on average, 3.6 billion miles away from the sun. The sun provides heat and energy to the entire solar system, and the farther away planets are from the sun, the colder they are.

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  • Q:

    Does Pluto have craters?

    A:

    Pluto, a dwarf planet, is subject to impact from cosmic material, which is the cause of planetary "craters." Pluto, however, is not close enough to Earth for modern imaging techniques to specifically identify these craters. They are assumed to exist.

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  • Q:

    What is the weather like on Pluto?

    A:

    When Pluto is closest to the sun, the frozen nitrogen on its surface sublimates, meaning it turns into gas, to provide a thin atmosphere. When Pluto is farthest away from the sun, the nitrogen in its thin atmosphere refreezes and falls as snow. Temperatures can range from -378 to -396 degrees Fahrenheit.

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  • Q:

    Does Pluto have any rings?

    A:

    Although astronomers have not observed any rings on Pluto, some scientists believe that Pluto may have rings due to the low gravitational pull of its two moons. NASA’s New Horizons mission may provide further information on the existence of rings around Pluto.

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