NASA will ask "the best minds in the country" to help it find a way to send a robotic probe to Pluto for less than $500 million, in a last-chance bid to examine the remote planet before its atmosphere refreezes as it makes its 248-year elliptical circuit around the sun. Ed Weiler, associate administrator for space science, told reporters yesterday the agency will issue a formal announcement of opportunity (AO) on Jan. 19, 2001, seeking proposals for a Pluto mission that will arrive ...

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