December 16, 2017

The search for the 9th planet

Image result for planet ninePlanet Nine (or X) is a hypothetical large planet in the far outer Solar System, the gravitational effects of which would explain the improbable orbital configuration of a group of trans-Neptunian objects  that orbit mostly beyond the Kuiper belt.

Planet Nine is not discovered as yet. The prediction is based on detailed mathematical modeling and computer simulations, not direct observation.

Some basic properties we know:
- it is not visible to the naked eye
- but the effects on nearby objects are visible
- mass is 5 to 10 times of the earth
- highly elliptical orbit with a orbital period of 15000 to 20000 years

The existence of Planet Nine would help to explain why all eight major solar system planets are tilted by about 6 degrees, compared to the Sun's equator.

Planet Nine would also solve why our Solar System is considered unusual, in regards to the lack of planets with masses between that of Earth and that of Neptune, when compared to other planetary systems.

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NOTE: the actual discovery and then the confirmation will take years as everyone has to agree.

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