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Definition: Charon, in astronomy from The Columbia Encyclopedia

in astronomy, the natural satellite, or moon, of Pluto.


Summary Article: Charon from Collins Dictionary of Astronomy

The only confirmed satellite of Pluto, discovered in 1978 by James W. Christy of the US Naval Observatory. The average distance between Charon and Pluto is less than 20 000 km. Charon is in synchronous rotation with Pluto (orbital period 6.39 days) and with a diameter of about 1190 km is more than half its size. It is, however, only one-tenth of Pluto's mass. See Table 2, backmatter.

© Market House Books Ltd, 2006

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