Pluto’s snow-capped peaks are like Earth’s – but not

Zoom in / “What dusts the peaks of Chathulhu?” Arcane is not a riddle.

We can use our knowledge of the Earth to explain the things we want on other worlds, even though we may have to tweak physics to be part of a different temperature or harsh environment. But planetary scientists cannot always assume that a familiar landscape feature is formed.

When the New Horizons spacecraft gave our first close look at Pluto, alien wonders were experienced. But there were also some brilliant mountain ranges, which looked very similar to the snowcapped peaks of the earth. On Earth, these ice caps are produced by increased rainfall over mountains and cooling, with colder temperatures at elevated temperatures.

On Pluto, that explanation may not work for many reasons. First, the temperature in general Increase When you go a few kilometers above the surface of Pluto due to gases absorbing solar energy. The wind also blows Downslop Because the cold surface cools the air near it, it reduces it. So what makes brilliant dusting and how does it get there?

Pluto’s heart-shaped bright plain is a Chartuhu dubbed dark-colored region to the west. There are some mountain ranges in the area which are .bhi due to their bright caps. Analyzing spectrum data from the field image, the researchers say the brightest areas are mostly methane ice. It also features on the walls of north-facing rims and effect craters in the area.

For terrestrial comparisons, the satellite image of the Alps is to the right.
Zoom in / For terrestrial comparisons, the satellite image of the Alps is to the right.

To see why methane ice would form in those places, researchers turned to Model Dale on the dwarf planet’s climate. This model allowed the ices of methane and nitrogen to be created (or to disappear by turning to gas), and the researchers targeted the conditions at the time of the New Horizon visit. By simply placing physics and topography, the model successfully creates methane ice on the mountains and pits of Cthulhu. Many places may see some methane frost form at night but disappear during the day. But the higher the amount of methane gas at alt altitude, the more it leads to a net accumulation at the top of the mountain above the daily cycle.