Potential Ninth in Solar System Discovered


Photo Courtesy of popularmechanics.com

Scientists and astronomers have identified a hypothetical super-Earth that has been claimed to be lurking in the outer reaches of the solar system. The discovery of what is being named “Planet Nine” is 10 times the mass of earth, is being studied for it’s peculiar 30-degree inclined orbit, according to inquisitr.com

Planetary Astronomer Michele Bannister had this to say in an interview with Newsweek regarding planet nine’s discovery and gravitational orbit, “This object is unusual because it’s on a high inclination, this can be used to maybe tell us some things about its formation process. There are a number of models that suggest you can probably put objects like this into the shape of orbit and the tilt of orbit that we see today.” Bannister told Newsweek that although the latest findings of this planet have been “a great discovery,” there are other scenarios that could be responsible for planet nine’s tilt, according to newsweek

Other planets with such similar and peculiar orbits to Planet Nine are commonly known to roam near the Kuiper Belt, a region of the solar system beyond the orbit of Neptune, believed to contain many comets, asteroids, and other small bodies made largely of ice. Planets like BP519 have very unusual orbits, orbiting at 54-degrees above the plane of the solar system, according to quanta magazine

Planet Nine’s orbital period around the sun takes roughly 10,000-20,000 years. It’s semi-major axis being an estimated 700 AU (est.), argument of perihelion being an estimated 150 degrees, estimated eccentricity of 0.6, mean radius of 13,000 to 26,000 km (8,000–16,000 mi); 2–4 R⊕ (est.), apparent magnitude of an estimated >22.5, and a mass of 6×1025 kg (est.); ≥10 M⊕ (est.), according to sciencealert.com

Astronomer Gregory Laughlin at Yale University is one person astonished at the mass of Planet Nine, stating, “It has a real magnetism to it; I mean, finding a 10-Earth-mass planet in our own solar system would be a discovery of unrivaled scientific magnitude.” Planet Nine is another step forward to discovery of new planets and their orbits, according to wired.com