A top NASA scientist who led a mission to send a spacecraft to photograph Pluto has said the moon should be upgraded to planet.

Alan Stern, who headed the New Horizons project, which beamed back amazing photographs of the tiny planet which was first identified in February 1930.

In a lecture due to be delivered today in Boston, Massachusetts, Stern said the Earth’s moon should be upgraded to a planet, as well as two moons which orbit Jupiter and a further two circling Saturn.

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