Pluto was discovered back in 1930 and that cute dwarf planet has been a blurry gray pixelated object to us ever since. Though our view of Pluto has gotten better ever so slightly over the years, we’ve never seen it in detail until the New Horizons spacecraft flew by everyone’s favorite former planet.
SpaceSciNewsroom put together this video showing how much our view of Pluto has been improved:
The first frame is a digital zoom-in on Pluto as it appeared upon its discovery by Clyde Tombaugh in 1930 (image courtesy Lowell Observatory Archives). The other images show various views of Pluto as seen by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope beginning in the 1990s and NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft in 2015. The final sequence zooms in to a close-up frame of Pluto released on July 15, 2015.