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Published on Nov 22, 2016
Evidence is mounting for an ocean buried beneath Pluto's frozen surface, now published in Nature. The latest findings are based on data from NASA's New Horizons, which made an unprecedented flyby of Pluto last year. The data indicates the dwarf planet's heart is hiding an underground ocean. Washington University’s Dr. Bill McKinnon is one of the scientists involved in the mission. After studying the data, McKinnon suspected a liquid ocean beneath the surface. McKinnon also published remarkable findings about Pluto that surpassed expectations about the dwarf planet. He explains how a large section of Pluto’s nitrogen ice surface is renewed by a process called convection. Now evidence from the flyby indicates an underground ocean.