What it took to get to Pluto

Share story

Charon and Pluto, composite image
This composite of enhanced color images of Pluto (lower right) and Charon (upper left), was taken by NASA's New Horizons spacecraft as it passed through the Pluto system on July 14, 2015.

NASA launched the New Horizons mission to Pluto in January 2006. It was a long-anticipated project that almost didn't happen.

As Alan Stern, planetary scientist and manager of the project, wrote in a new book he co-authored, "It was disappointing to me to learn that senior scientists insisted that a mission to Pluto wasn't justified simply for its exploration value."

Stern joined MPR News host Kerri Miller to discuss his new book, "Chasing New Horizons: Inside the Epic First Mission to Pluto," which he co-authored with David Grinspoon.

Use the audio player above to hear the full discussion.

Before you go...

MPR News is dedicated to bringing you clarity in coverage from our reporters across the state, stories that connect us, and conversations that provide perspectives when we need it most. We rely on your help to do this. Your donation has the power to keep MPR News strong and accessible to all during this crisis and beyond.