Pluto's moon Charon which is half its diameter and orbits 12,000 miles away, is slowing down the decay of Pluto's atmosphere.
This moon protects the continuous stripping of Pluto's atmosphere by the solar wind.
Charon is between Pluto and the Sun, and it can reduce atmospheric loss significantly.
Though the moon does not have its own atmosphere, it does create a shield for Pluto and redirects solar wind around and away.
Barrier creates an acute angle of Pluto's bow shock, slowing down the deteriorating atmosphere's rate of decay.
This barrier creates a more acute angle of Pluto's bow shock, slowing down the deterioration of the atmosphere.
The study's predictions, before the New Horizons probe collected and returned data to Earth, matches measurements made it about about Pluto's atmospheric loss rate.