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Massive collision may have formed Pluto's moon
Posted: Mon, Jan 31, 2005, 6:45 AM ET (1145 GMT)
A collision between Pluto and another body nearly as large may have led to the formation of Pluto's moon Charon, scientists said last week. In a paper published in the January 28 issue of the journal Science, Robin Canup of the Southwest Research Institute reported that computer models showed that a collision between Pluto and another body nearly as large as the planet could have led to the formation of Charon, a moon 10-15 percent as massive as Pluto. The formation process would be similar to the formation of the Earth's Moon, which similar models show could have been created by the collision of the Earth with a Mars-sized protoplanet.
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