Going Where No Man Has Gone Before

Last week, history was made when the New Horizons spacecraft did a fly-by of the not-planet Pluto and beamed back never-before-seen pictures of its surface for the world to marvel at.

Slightly less reported across the media, the New Horizons craft also contained a very special payload:

Pluto ashes

Picture from Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, via Forbes.com

The circular container shown contains a portion of the ashes of Clyde Tombaugh, the man who originally discovered Pluto in 1930.  His ashes were included aboard when the craft launched in 2006.  They now are the farthest-traveling human remains known to mankind, and will be the first to leave our solar system as well.

The inscription on the container reads:

Interned herein are remains of American Clyde W. Tombaugh, discoverer of Pluto and the solar system’s ‘third zone’ Adelle and Muron’s boy, Patricia’s husband, Annette and Alden’s father, astronomer, teacher, punster, and friend: Clyde W. Tombaugh (1906-1997).


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