This latest news comes from Caltech’s Mike Brown and Konstantin Batygin right after three years have passed since the announcement which claimed that there’s a ninth planet in the solar system.
Now, they are publishing two papers which analyze the evidence for Planet Nine’s existence.
Science Daily reports that these papers provide brand new details on the suspected nature and location of the planet.
This planet has been the subject of intense debate and international search ever since Batygin and Brown’s 2016 announcement.
Orbital Clustering in the Distant Solar System
The first paper is titled “Orbital Clustering in the Distant Solar System,” and it was published in The Astronomical Journal on January 22.
The Planet Nine hypothesis is founded on evidence which suggests that the clustering of objects in the Kuiper Belt, which is a field of icy bodies which lies beyond Neptune is influenced by the gravitational tugs of a planet that we don’t see.
“Though this analysis does not say anything directly about whether Planet Nine is there, it does indicate that the hypothesis rests upon a solid foundation,” says Brown, the Richard and Barbara Rosenberg Professor of Planetary Astronomy.
The Planet Nine Hypothesis
The second paper is called “The Planet Nine Hypothesis,” and it will be published in the next issue of Physics Reports.
This one offers thousands of new computer models of the dynamical evolution of the distant solar system and it also provides more details about the nature of Planet Nine.
It’s estimated that it’s smaller and closer to the Sun than it was previously believed.
“At five Earth masses, Planet Nine is likely to be very reminiscent of a typical extrasolar super-Earth,” says Batygin.
“The prospect of one day seeing real images of Planet Nine is absolutely electrifying. Although finding Planet Nine astronomically is a great challenge, I’m very optimistic that we will image it within the next decade.” Konstantin Batygin continued.
Head over to the Science Daily website to learn more about the papers.
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