The elusive Planet Nine, which has yet to be confirmed, could not even be from our Solar system according to a new study that suggests that it may actually be a castaway.
Planet Nine has been the cause of many debates. It all started after Pluto lost its planet status. From then on, scientists have been debating. They have been raising arguments about the rules that regulate a planet. The proposal concerning the elusive Planet Nine did not help matters.
Science proposed the existence of this new planet based solely on theories. Such a body has yet to be spotted. An exact location has yet to be determined. And research lacks direct evidence as to its position. They only have hints as to the planet’s origins.
But at least one fact could be better explained by a new study. Planet Nine started being seriously taken into consideration back in 2016. Its potential existence was detected by two California Institute of Technology astrophysicists. They are Konstantin Batygin and Michael Brown.
During research, they detected specific gravitational anomalies. They were detected in our outer solar system. The anomalies could be explained by the existence of a new planet. It would have to be a massive one. Its potential dimension could be 10 times that of Earth. And it would also have to be very far away.
But its far away position is quite hard to explain. James Vesper believes to have found an explanation. He is a New Mexico State University undergraduate. Vesper presented his study during the American Astronomical Society’s meeting. It was their 229th one and took place in Grapevine, Texas.
Vesper proposes as follows. According to him, the elusive Planet Nine could be a castaway. More exactly, it could have been left behind by a passing solar system.
The researcher based his theory on a series of tests. He created 156 computer simulation. These analyzed the behavior of hypothetical rogue planets. More exactly, the simulations presented possible solar system – rogue planet meeting scenarios.
Rogue planets are formed as any other space object. Still, they could encounter an unfortunate circumstance. During its early formation, such a planet’s orbit could still be affected. More exactly, if its home system’s orbit system has yet to settle down.
In such cases, the early formation planet could get slingshot out of its place. A much larger planet in a passing solar system could be the culprit. As such, Planet Nine could now be wandering through the Milky Way.
The study revealed the following statistics. In 40 percent of the simulations, the rogue was captured by the Sun. In 60 percent of the cases, it was tossed out of its system. Gravitational forces were the reasons behind such an event.
Vesper’s new theory could help explain Planet Nine’s far away proposed distance. Its putative orbit would also be explained.
Still, the researcher does point out a fact. Even this new simulation does not offer clues as to its origin. Planet Nine is perhaps just as elusive.
It also has yet to be confirmed. Previous studies hope to prove its existence this year. Early 2017 was proposed as a first date for the milestone.
Vesper’s new theory has been met with mixed opinions. Some consider that it solves a few issues. Others consider it quite unlikely. As such, they prefer the classical theory. According to it, Planet Nine was formed just as the rest of the solar system.
Still, the existence of Planet Nine could bring about some changes. It may offer new data on our solar system. Or more exactly, its violent beginnings. But until then, Planet Nine still has to observed and confirmed.
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