This image depicts an artist's rendering of the New Horizons spacecraft as it approaches Pluto and its three moons in summer 2015. It will be the first spacecraft to visit Pluto and its moon, Charon.
The craft's miniature cameras, radio science experiment, ultraviolet and infrared spectrometers and space plasma experiments will examine the global geology and geomorphology of Pluto and Charon. It will also map their surface compositions and temperatures, and examine Pluto's atmosphere in detail.
The spacecraft's 7-foot (2.1-meter) dish antenna, prominently displayed in this image, will allow it to communicate with Earth from distances up to 4.7 billion miles (7.5 billion kilometers).
New Horizons reached Jupiter earlier this year, 13 months after lifting off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, in January 2006.
Kemo D. (a.k.a. no.7) www.beyondgenes.com