Planet 9: Scientists Discover A New Ninth Planet, Internet Reacts By Mercilessly Mocking Pluto
So, researchers at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) have found evidence of a new ninth planet in our solar system. The planet, which they’ve temporarily named Planet 9, is thought to be ten times the mass of earth and resides about 200 or 300 times further away from the sun than we do, meaning one orbit of the sun would take around 15,000 years.
The scientists, Konstantin Batygin and Mike Brown, haven’t actually seen the planet with a telescope but have deduced that it exists by studying dwarf planets and other astral bodies, whose orbits are disrupted by something that appears to be massive, but as yet unseen.
“This would be a real ninth planet,” Brown said. “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.”
It’s though the planet may have been knocked all the way out there about 4.5 billion years ago when the solar system was forming, ejected into its distant orbit by collisions with Jupiter or Saturn.
“Although we were initially quite skeptical 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. “For the first time in over 150 years, there is solid evidence that the solar system’s planetary census is incomplete.”
The pair hope to confirm it’s existence by sighting it with a large telescope based in Hawaii, and urge other scientists to help with the search.
Thing is, there used to be nine planets until Pluto was downgraded to a dwarf planet back in 2006 by the International Astronomical Union (IAU). To make matters worse (for Pluto anyway) work by Mike Brown, the same Mike Brown involved in this new discovery, helped the case to downgrade Pluto nearly a decade ago.
Conspiracy? Of course not, but the internet still had some fun with this potential new planet, from mocking poor Pluto, to what they might name it, to even Mike Brown himself making a joke (his Twitter bio states “Astronomer, planet hunter, Pluto killer.”
OK, OK, I am now willing to admit: I DO believe that the solar system has nine planets.
— Mike Brown (@plutokiller) January 20, 2016
NASA : we were wrong , there ARE 9 planets in the Solar System PLUTO: I'm back, baby! NASA: because we found a new one! PLUTO: SON OF A
— The Drunkest Duck (@druuuck) January 20, 2016
— TrivWorks (@TrivWorks) January 20, 2016
im surprised people are still mad that pluto got demoted. it has been 10 years, and it is time to let go of pluto being a planet
— jitka (@jitka) January 20, 2016
What kind of planet is planet nine?
— Lazy Millennial Slob (@wgwinfrey) January 20, 2016
— Sabrina Mayes (@Sabrina79569739) January 20, 2016
The same guy who overthrew the old ninth planet now says that, as he’s gotten more mature, he’s found a new ninth planet.
— Robinson Meyer (@yayitsrob) January 20, 2016
My theory: Planet Nine is just Asgard. Heimdall left the gate open. pic.twitter.com/yNES7Q790W
— Jeff E. (@JedadiahLeland) January 20, 2016
Planet Nine from Outer Space was discovered in 1959, people. pic.twitter.com/4XlbodHPT2
— Magi Loucks (@ItsMagi) January 20, 2016
Are we going to fall in love with Planet Nine just to have our hearts broken when we find out it’s nothing more than a lump of space ice?
— Ryan Cassin (@ryancassin) January 20, 2016
BREAKING: Pluto spotted driving slowly past Planet Nine's home, still unable to get over the past. https://t.co/Dslc95VrJ6
— P Scott Patterson (@OriginalPSP) January 20, 2016
Scientists have found Planet Nine lurking at the edge of the solar system. Most think it's creepy, but some blame the sun for leading it on.
— Nick Jack Pappas (@Pappiness) January 20, 2016
– They are calling it "Planet Nine." from the people that brought you the big bang
— David M Willis (@damnyouwillis) January 20, 2016
coincidentally, "Planet Nine" and "massive perturber" are the names of my college bands. pic.twitter.com/iDroSayeHQ
— southpaw (@nycsouthpaw) January 20, 2016
You can tell real scientists found the ninth planet because they just called it Planet Nine and got back to work. pic.twitter.com/1bF7TrrA5U
— SarcasticRover (@SarcasticRover) January 20, 2016
I hope they give Planet Nine a human name, like Jeff.
— Evan J'daté Kessler (@EvanJKessler) January 20, 2016
— Nate Benson (@natebenson) January 20, 2016
— Kyle Hill (@Sci_Phile) January 21, 2016
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