Spacecraft Images


 View images from Kennedy Space Center

Model Features

Third Anniversary of New Horizons' Launch

Credit: Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory

Mission Project Scientist Hal Weaver (right) points out features on the New Horizons spacecraft model to curious Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory co-workers, just after the one-half-scale model was installed in the lobby of APL’s newest building (Building 200) on Dec. 22, 2011. APL built and operates the New Horizons spacecraft from its campus in Laurel, Maryland.

Model Spacecraft Pair

New Horizons Science Team Photo November 2005

Credit: Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory

Models of the Pluto-bound New Horizons (left) and the Mercury-orbiting MESSENGER spacecraft adorn the lobby of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory’s newest building (Building 200). APL built and operates both spacecraft from its campus in Laurel, Maryland. The one-half-scale New Horizons model, also built at APL, was installed on Dec. 22, 2011.

APL Model

New Horizons Principal Investigator

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute

A half-scale model of the New Horizons spacecraft hangs in the lobby of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory’s newest building (Building 200), which houses most of the Lab’s Space Department staff. APL built and operates the New Horizons spacecraft from its campus in Laurel, Maryland. The model, also built at APL, was installed on Dec. 22, 2011.

NASM Model

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory

A life-size model of the New Horizons spacecraft – provided by the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, where the real New Horizons was designed and built – is on display at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center near Washington Dulles International Airport in Northern Virginia. The New Horizons display is at the far end of the James McDonnell Space Hangar, behind the space shuttle Enterprise.

Read the full story of the New Horizons model

SWAP Installation

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute

Mike Lynch of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory and Benjamin Rodriguez of the Southwest Research Institute re-install the Solar Wind Around Pluto (SWAP) instrument on NASA's New Horizons spacecraft Oct. 5 at Kennedy Space Center, Fla. SWAP, one of seven instruments on the Pluto-bound New Horizons probe, had been removed for previously planned maintenance and installation of new detectors. Visible above SWAP is the Pluto Energetic Particle Spectrometer Science Investigation (PEPSSI) instrument; to the right are the telescopic Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) and, with protective red covers, the spacecraft's star-tracking navigation cameras.

Launch is scheduled during a 35-day window that opens on January 11, 2006.

PEPSSI Operations

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute

Mike Lynch, Carlos Castillo and Jim Hutcheson of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory apply thermally insulating Kapton tape between the Pluto-bound New Horizons spacecraft and the Pluto Energetic Particle Spectrometer Science Investigation (PEPSSI) instrument during pre-launch operations at Kennedy Space Center, Fla., on Oct 5. Below PEPSSI is the slot for the Solar Wind Around Pluto (SWAP) instrument, which was re-installed following the PEPSSI operations, and atop the spacecraft is the nearly 7-foot diameter dish antenna New Horizons will use to send data back from the distant planet.

Launch is scheduled during a 35-day window that opens on January 11, 2006.

Loading Into Cargo Plane

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute

Packed safely in a custom-built, pressurized shipping container, NASA's New Horizons spacecraft is loaded into a C-17 cargo plane at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., for the flight to Kennedy Space Center, Fla., on Sept. 23. The spacecraft arrived at KSC early the next morning, and is undergoing final preparations for its scheduled January 2006 launch toward Pluto and the Kuiper Belt.

Unloading Spacecraft

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute

The Air Force C-17 cargo plane carrying the New Horizons spacecraft awaits unloading at the Shuttle Landing Facility, Kennedy Space Center , Fla. , early on Sept. 24. The spacecraft and associated equipment had been transported from Maryland , where the probe was built and tested for its scheduled January 2006 launch and mission to Pluto.

Prepare to Unload

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute

Mission team members and ground crew prepare to unload the shipping "can" containing the New Horizons spacecraft at Kennedy Space Center, Fla., shortly after the Air Force C-17 cargo plane that carried the probe touched down at the Shuttle Landing Facility on Sept. 24. The custom-made, pressurized controlled shipping container is about 10 feet tall and 10 feet wide.

Spacecraft Packed for Shipment

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute

Packed safely in a pressurized shipping container, the New Horizons spacecraft is loaded onto a flatbed truck at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt , Md. , on Sept. 23 for the trip to Andrews Air Force Base, where it was loaded onto a C-17 cargo plane and flown to Kennedy Space Center , Fla. The Pluto-bound probe recently completed three months of space-environment tests at Goddard; before then it was tested at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Md., where it was designed and built. New Horizons arrived at Kennedy Space Center in the early hours of Sept. 24 and is now being prepared for its scheduled January 2006 launch.

Antenna Move

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute (NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI)

Team members at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, MD, move the high-gain antenna assembly toward the New Horizons spacecraft for installation on April 13, 2005. The spacecraft's most prominent design feature, the assembly includes high-, medium-, and low-gain antennas. The high-gain antenna consists of a 2.1-meter (nearly 7-foot) reflector dish mounted close to the spacecraft and a subreflector on the back side of the medium-gain reflector.

Visible on the back of the spacecraft are (from left) the Solar Wind at Pluto (SWAP), Pluto Energetic Particle Spectrometer Science Investigation (PEPSSI) and LOng Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) instruments, as well as the star-tracking navigation cameras (with protective red caps).

According to mission plans, New Horizons would be about 5 billion kilometers (3.1 billion miles) from Earth when it reaches Pluto in summer 2015. This stacked design provides a clear field of view for the low-gain antenna, while providing structural support for the high- and medium-gain reflector antennas. The antenna is also a key component of the mission's Radio Science Experiment - called REX - which will help scientists understand the structure of Pluto's atmosphere by looking at how radio signals change as they're sent from Earth and move through Pluto's atmosphere.

Attaching the Antenna 2

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute (NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI)

Team members at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, MD, attach the high-gain antenna assembly to the New Horizons spacecraft on April 13, 2005. The spacecraft's most prominent design feature, the assembly includes high-, medium-, and low-gain antennas. The high-gain antenna consists of a 2.1-meter (nearly 7-foot) reflector dish mounted close to the spacecraft and a subreflector on the back side of the medium-gain reflector.

According to mission plans, New Horizons would be about 5 billion kilometers (3.1 billion miles) from Earth when it reaches Pluto in summer 2015. This stacked design provides a clear field of view for the low-gain antenna, while providing structural support for the high- and medium-gain reflector antennas. The antenna is also a key component of the mission's Radio Science Experiment - called REX - which will help scientists understand the structure of Pluto's atmosphere by looking at how radio signals change as they're sent from Earth and move through Pluto's atmosphere.

Attaching the Antenna 1

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute (NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI)

Team members at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, MD, attach the high-gain antenna assembly to the New Horizons spacecraft on April 13, 2005. The spacecraft's most prominent design feature, the assembly includes high-, medium-, and low-gain antennas. The high-gain antenna consists of a 2.1-meter (nearly 7-foot) reflector dish mounted close to the spacecraft and a subreflector on the back side of the medium-gain reflector.

Also visible on the left side of the spacecraft below the dish are (clockwise, from top) the Pluto Energetic Particle Spectrometer Science Investigation (PEPSSI), LOng Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) and Solar Wind at Pluto (SWAP) instruments.

According to mission plans, New Horizons would be about 5 billion kilometers (3.1 billion miles) from Earth when it reaches Pluto in summer 2015. This stacked design provides a clear field of view for the low-gain antenna, while providing structural support for the high- and medium-gain reflector antennas. The antenna is also a key component of the mission's Radio Science Experiment - called REX - which will help scientists understand the structure of Pluto's atmosphere by looking at how radio signals change as they're sent from Earth and move through Pluto's atmosphere.

Antenna Fit Check 2

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute (NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI)

New Horizons team members get a good look under the spacecraft during a "fit check" of the 2.1-meter (nearly 7-foot) dish antenna on Feb. 1, 2005, at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Md. Visible on the spacecraft body are its star-tracking cameras (with protective red covers) and, at left, the Solar Wind at Pluto (SWAP) and Pluto Energetic Particle Spectrometer Science Investigation (PEPSSI) instruments.

Antenna Fit Check 1

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute (NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI)

The New Horizons spacecraft team conducts a "fit check" of the 2.1-meter (nearly 7-foot) dish antenna Feb. 1, 2005, at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Md. Also visible on the spacecraft body are its star-tracking cameras (with protective red covers), the Alice ultraviolet imaging spectrometer (at right) and the Solar Wind at Pluto (SWAP) and Pluto Energetic Particle Spectrometer Science Investigation (PEPSSI) instruments (at left). Launch of New Horizons, the first mission to Pluto and the Kuiper Belt, is planned for January 2006.

System Check

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute (NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI)

A technician at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory checks the electronics on NASA's New Horizons spacecraft. Launch of the Pluto flyby mission is currently planned for January 2006.

Alice Installation

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute (NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI)

Technicians at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland, install the Alice ultraviolet imaging spectrometer on NASA's New Horizons spacecraft. Alice is one of seven science instruments designed for the Pluto flyby mission, which is planned for launch in January 2006.

LORRI Installation

New Horizons Team Photo

Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute (NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI)

Technicians at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland, install the Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) on NASA's New Horizons spacecraft. The telescopic camera is one of seven science instruments designed for the Pluto flyby mission, which is planned for launch in January 2006.