This is an artist’s rendering of the New Horizons spacecraft encountering a Kuiper Belt object — a city-sized icy relic left over from the birth of our solar system. The sun, more than 4.1 billion miles (6.7 billion kilometers) away, shines as a bright star embedded in the glow of the zodiacal dust cloud. Jupiter and Neptune are visible as orange and blue “stars” to the right of the sun. (Image : JHUAPL/SwRI)
(CNN) — NASA’s New Horizons explorer is hurtling through space on its way to the outermost reaches of the solar system for a rendezvous with the small, icy “dwarf planet” of Pluto and its five moons.