Planet 9 from Outer Space
Science & Tech / /
No one knows exactly where it is or how big it is, but when researchers discovered that there is a chance of a ninth planet existing, everyone started searching for this new enigmatic world.
Prof. Mike Brown and Dr. Konstantin Batygin found evidence of a large ice planet at the end of the solar system, beyond Pluto, at a distance of 149 billion miles from the sun.
Although the planet has never been seen by any telescope, Brown estimates that the hypothetical "Planet Nine" orbits the Sun every 10,000 to 20,000 years ago, that is four times the size of Earth and 10 times the mass of Earth.
Using the model for solar system formation, along with available data on this planet, astronomers from the Bern University in Switzerland are formulating a picture of how large, bright and warm would this planet be. They say that it is supposed to be something like "mini Uranus" with solid core of iron surrounded by ice and dense layer of gas.
They noticed the existence of the 9th planet when a very unusual grouping of some previous celestial bodies had been formed. They say there is 0.007 % chance that this kind of grouping is coincidental. Instead of that, they believe there is a chance that a planet with a size of 10 Earths has placed these 6 bodies in their strange elliptical orbits.
It’s almost like having six hands on a clock all moving at different rates, and when you happen to look up, they’re all in exactly the same place
Brown said in a press release, adding that the odds of that happening are about one-in-100.
The study has been accepted by the journal Astronomy and Astrophysics. There aren’t many direct observations of this huge object yet, but the search continues using world’s largest telescopes.
It is very interesting that with that distance, this planet should be much cooler with the Sun being the only source of heat. As ‘’Discovery News’’ had reported, the vast amount of energy generated at the cores can keep the heat for billions of years and with that the temperature can contribute to the overall temperature of the planet.
Since all the radiation that could be detected on Planet Nine is sunlight, the planet would be much brighter in the infrared than in the visible spectrum.
And if you’re interested to know from what the planet is made of, you can check it below. The estimates of the astronomers are shown in the chart.
Why isn’t this discovered before?
According to astronomers, the observation space mission that had been conducted in the past would hardly notice anything like this in the solar system. But it is believed that with the future telescopes such as ‘’LSST’’ (Large Synoptic Survey Telescope) there will be sufficient evidence about everything that exists out there.