Planet X? New Evidence of an Unseen Planet at Solar System's Edge

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by Matthew, May 26, 2012.

  1. Matthew
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    Matthew Blue dog all the way!

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    Planet X? New Evidence of an Unseen Planet at Solar System's Edge

    This artist's conception illustrates a giant planet floating freely without a parent star. Astronomers recently uncovered evidence for such lone worlds, thought to have been booted from developing star systems. The sun may have captured such a planet, which new work shows may reside at the edge of the solar system.
    CREDIT: NASA/JPL-Caltech

    A planet four times the size of Earth may be skirting the edges of the solar system beyond Pluto, according to new research. Too distant to be easily spotted by Earth-based telescopes, the unseen planet could be gravitationally tugging on small icy objects past Neptune, helping explain the mystery of those objects' peculiar orbits.

    The claim comes from Rodney Gomes, a noted astronomer at the National Observatory of Brazil in Rio de Janeiro. Gomes presented his recently completed computer models suggesting the existence of the distant planet at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Timberline Lodge, Ore., earlier this month.

    Astronomers who attended the talk find Gomes' arguments compelling, but they say much more evidence is needed before the hypothetical planet can be crowned as real.

    For several years, astronomers have observed that a handful of the small icy bodies that lie in the so-called "scattered disc" beyond the orbit of the planet Neptune, including the dwarf planet Sedna, deviate from the paths around the sun that would be expected based on the gravitational pulls of all the known objects in the solar system.
    Planet X? New Evidence of an Unseen Planet at Solar System's Edge | LiveScience
     
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  2. jmasterson
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    jmasterson Rookie

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    We lost Pluto but may gain Plant X. A fair trade I'd say.
     
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  3. CrusaderFrank
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    CrusaderFrank Diamond Member

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    Dad had a shirt that said, "When I was your age, Pluto was a planet"
     
  4. CrusaderFrank
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    CrusaderFrank Diamond Member

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