Dwarf planet discovery redefines solar system's edge

Mar 28 2014, 09:37 IST
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SummaryAstronomers have found a dwarf planet in the depths of space well past Pluto, a discovery that suggests there may be a giant planet - ten times the size of Earth - lurking at the edge of our solar system.

even very large ones would be too faint to detect with current technology," said Sheppard.

The similarity in the orbits found for Sedna, 2012 VP113 and a few other objects near the edge of the Kuiper Belt suggests that an unknown massive perturbing body may be shepherding these objects into these similar orbital configurations.

Researchers suggest a Super Earth or an even larger object at hundreds of AU could create the shepherding effect seen in the orbits of these objects, which are too distant to be perturbed significantly by any of the known planets.

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