Planet Nine: Massive new planet discovered in our solar system

According to The Independent, a huge planet might be sitting at the edge of our solar system without ever being seen, called Planet Nine

If true, this is a major astronomical discovery. Konstantin Batygin and Mike Brown of Caltech University believe that they’ve discovered a new planet at the outskirts of our solar system. The object, dubbed Planet Nine, has not been directly observed yet. The researchers made the discovery through mathematical modeling and computer simulations.
Read: Kepler telescope discovers “œmost Earth-like“ planet yet
“This would be a real ninth planet,” says Brown, the Richard and Barbara Rosenberg Professor of Planetary Astronomy. “There have only been two true planets discovered since ancient times, and this would be a third. It’s a pretty substantial chunk of our solar system that’s still out there to be found, which is pretty exciting.”


The planet is theorized to be 10x the mass of Earth and 5,000 times the mass of dwarf planet Pluto. They believe that the planet’s orbit (one full rotation around the Sun) would take somewhere between 10,000-20,000 years. That means one year ago on Planet Nine would’ve been during our planet’s last Ice Age.
“Although we were initially quite sceptical that this planet could exist, as we continued to investigate its orbit and what it would mean for the outer solar system, we become increasingly convinced that it is out there,” says Batygin, an assistant professor of planetary science. “For the first time in over 150 years, there is solid evidence that the solar system’s planetary census is incomplete.”
The two scientists came to discover the planet after realizing that many objects in the Kuiper Belt, an asteroid-like belt at the edge of our solar system, were not behaving the way they were supposed to. After trying a few different models, Brown and Batygin came to the conclusion that a massive object must be distorting the paths and behaviours of these other smaller bodies. As the continued to investigate more and more evidence came to support their conclusions.
The obvious next step is to directly observe mysterious Planet Nine. Time to bust out your telescopes amateur astronomers “” you could be the one to confirm the existence of a new planet in our solar system.
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