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Is there or isn’t there a Planet 9? Is there a planet way out on the outskirts of our Solar System, with sufficient mass to explain the movements of distant objects? Or is a disc of icy material responsible? There’s no direct evidence yet of an actual Planet 9, but something with sufficient mass is affecting the orbits of distant Solar System objects.
A new study suggests that a disc of icy material causes the strange movements of outer Solar System objects, and that we don’t need to invent another planet to explain those movements. The study comes from
Professor - Jihad - Touma - American - University
Professor Jihad Touma, from the American University of Beirut, and
Antranik Sefilian, a PhD student in Cambridge’s Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics. Their results are published in the Astronomical Journal.
Idea - Planet - Reaches - System - One
The idea of another planet out there in the furthest reaches of our Solar System is an attractive one. It energizes the adventurer in all of us. And for the astronomer or astronomers who may finally discover it, it would be a crowning achievement. Who wouldn’t want to be known as the discoverer of an entirely new planet, right here in our own Solar System? It’s much more exciting than being the person who finally confirmed the mass of a disc of icy material.
As astronomers have gotten better at studying and understanding the distant Solar System, they’ve found more and more objects. In the last 15 years or so, astronomers have discovered about 30 Trans-Neptunal Objects (TNOs) that travel highly-elliptical orbits. The most recent one was “The Goblin,” a body with an orbit that takes it as far as 2300 AUs from the Sun.
Dwarf - Planet - TG387 - Goblin - Orbit
Dwarf planet 2015 TG387, or Goblin, has an orbit that takes it much further from the Sun than other Inner Oort Cloud Objects Sedna and 2012 VP113. Could...
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