Questions tagged [trans-neptunian-object]

Questions about objects orbiting the Sun with an average distance greater than that of Neptune.

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Are planets far from their parent star more likely or less likely to have an atmosphere?

Are non-gaseous planets (e.g. super-Earths) that are either rogue or very far from their parent star(s) less likely or more likely to have a significant atmosphere? On one hand planets closer to their ...
8 votes
1 answer
689 views

When might Rowan-Robinson's planet be discovered or disproved?

A month ago Michael Rowan-Robinson discovered three dots on old images of the sky which may or may not be an undiscovered planet (that's not identical to Brown's and Batigyn's hypothetical planet). I ...
8 votes
1 answer
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Could Planet X have a perihelion much closer than 300 AU and still be responsible for the gravitational interaction with 19 TNOs?

In August, Michael Brown and Konstantin Batigyn proposed new data concerning the hypothetical Planet X to explain the orbits of the 19 TNOs. They suggest a perihelion of 300 AU, but might Planet X be ...
1 vote
0 answers
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Would a telescope substantially away from the ecliptic plane improve TNO detection?

There have been lots of new TNOs found in the last decade. Would a telescope far from the ecliptic plane be useful to image them, and spot new ones? What about planet nine, assuming it exists: would ...
4 votes
1 answer
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How has the number of known TNOs evolved over time?

As of 2020, we know of more than 2,000 trans-neptunian objects (TNOs). How has this number evolved over time? It's pretty easy to find a chart that shows the number of exoplanets discovered per year, ...
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6 votes
1 answer
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Are satellites of trans-Neptunian objects classified as trans-Neptunian objects?

I can't seem to get a consistent answer regarding the question of whether or not satellites (moons) of trans-Neptunian objects are considered to be trans-Neptunian objects, given that they do not ...
0 votes
0 answers
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If the hypothetical planet had a perihelion around 60 AU, would some consider it being responsible for the Kuiper cliff?

If Planet X had a perihelion around 60 AU and an aphelion in the vicinity of Sedna's aphelion (940 AU), would it be considered to be responsible for both the high eccentricities of TNO's orbits and ...
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1 vote
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Couldn't the orbits of ETNOs have been altered by a flying-by rogue planet as well?

Regarding the Extreme trans-Neptunian objects or ETNOs, whose orbits some believe are elongated by a far away planet, could their orbits have been elongated by a rogue planet as well? Is it possible ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Has the rotation of Eris and Dysnomia been observed?

Since both Eris and Dysnomia have been captured on a single image, is it possible to shoot multiple images of them to see how they rotate around each other? Has this been attempted? We don't know much ...
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3 votes
2 answers
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When will 2002 MS4 be named?

The trans-Neptunian planetoid 2002 MS4 is currently the largest known unnamed Sun-orbiting object. Is there any standard schedule on when this and similar objects might be named? Usually the ...
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2 votes
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Which celestial body is able to come closest to Pluto?

Other than Pluto's moons (including Charon), which known body comes closest to Pluto, and how close? Neptune doesn't come closer than 16 au. What about Orcus, whose orbit is similar to Pluto's, or ...
2 votes
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Based on discoveries of new TNOs since 2016, is planet Nine still necessary to explain the TNO's orbits?

It is almost five years since the announcement of the likelyhood of another planet that is responsible for clustering eTNO's orbits, very close perihelia of detached dwarf planets to the Sun, and high ...
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Why is the Kuiper belt called like this?

Since most orbits of KBOs are highly inclined, isn't it rather a "Kuiper cloud"? Most main belt objects are also more inclined than the eight recognized planets, but not as much as KBOs (and ...
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1 answer
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Computationally intensive technique to search for TNO's within the noise of historical photographic data?

I remember reading recently about a technique to search through lots of old survey images to try to identify trans-Neptunian objects that were so dim that they were "lost in the noise" in ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Are there any known low-inclination trans-Neptunian objects?

All the trans-Neptunian object's orbits I know are very inclined compared to those of the eight recognized planets, and Centaur's orbits are highly inclined as well. Are there any known Centaurs and/...
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How likely does a body more massive than Eris exist beyond the Kuiper belt?

Other than the hypothetical Planet IX, is it likely if there's a (dwarf) planet more massive than Eris orbiting between Eris and Planet IX? Michael Brown seems to have found it likely. As far as we ...
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If Planet Nine is a primordial black hole could it explain 'Oumuamua and Borisov's orbits without them being interstellar?

There has been an increasing amount of interest in the possibility of primordial black holes and that Planet Nine may be one itself. Planet Nine is a potential explanation for the orbital ...
1 vote
1 answer
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Is there or will there be any search after a primordial black hole 500 au from the Sun?

Since 2019 it is proposed that the hypothetical Planet IX may in fact be a primordial black hole. Black holes are being looked after differently than planets. You can look for a gravitational lens or ...
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Why isn't Eris considered a planet despite being the body of dominant mass?

The 2006 definition of a planet states that a planet is a celestial body that (a) is in orbit around the Sun (b) has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome rigid body forces so that it ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Can the WISE telescope detect black holes?

Black holes are hot, aren't they? With its infrared scan, could the WISE telescope also detect a black hole? The hypothetical planet beyond the Kuiper belt could actually be a primordial black hole. ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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Could Eris have a permanent atmosphere?

In Wikipedia they write that Eris has an atmosphere when around perihelion (close to the Sun) which collapses when Eris moves away from the Sun. So it behaves similar to a comet's tail. However, they ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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How can a Grade-11 Student avail TESS data and learn to process?

As mentioned, I am a Grade-11 student. I have always been interested in Data Processing activities. This sums up my experience of working on Asteroid hunt Campaign under IASC (International Asteroid ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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What does the Sun look like from Eris at its aphelion?

At its aphelion (most distant location from the Sun) the outermost-known planet Eris is about 100 times as far from the Sun as Earth. What does the Sun look like from Eris' surface? Is there still a ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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How official is TNO 486958, 2014 MU69's new name Arrokoth?

The Trans-Neptunian object 486958 or 2014 MU69 has had several designations and nicknames. According to Phys.org's NASA renames faraway ice world 'Arrokoth' after backlash Ultima Thule, the ...
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5 votes
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Are occultation observations used/useful for orbit determination?

The IAU Minor Planet Center lists $(486958)\space 2014 \space MU_{69}$ "Ultima Thule" as having an uncertainty parameter of 2, based on the observation arc of 851 days, from its discovery in 2014, to ...
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1 answer
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Trans-Neptunian Dwarf Planet near Heliopause

Is there any reason to think a Trans-Neptunian dwarf planet, the size of Pluto, could not exist in a Keplerian orbit 120AU from the Sun? If such an object existed, and came within 0.1AU of the ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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How long would an occultation by a TNO last?

A trans-Neptunian object, 1 million km from the observer, with an angular diameter of 0.126° occults the Sun (angular diameter of 0.004°) and the TNO and the observer are moving in the same direction, ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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How would the combined masses of the Centaurs or the scattered disk compare to the combined mass of the asteroid belt?

I'm interested in finding the combined mass of the Centaurs and the scattered disk. I looked around but I wasn't able to find any estimates. This seems to suggest that either the combined masses of ...
1 vote
2 answers
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How do they know how far out Farout is? (2018 VG18)

The Carnegie Science article Discovered: The Most-Distant Solar System Object Ever Observed begins: Washington, DC— A team of astronomers has discovered the most-distant body ever observed in our ...
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Are Trans-Neptunian Objects (TNOs) asteroids? [closed]

Are Trans-Neptunian Objects (TNOs) asteroids? Please, base your answer. If possible, give sources. Thanks.
2 votes
1 answer
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Assuming 2007 OR10 is in tidal lock with its satellite, what is its mass?

Its rotation period is 45 hours. Its satellite is at the distance of 15000 km. Given this data, and assuming the satellite's orbital period the same as the main body's rotation period, 45 hours, what ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Observed data: Why so many MPECs about TNOs lately?

The Minor Planet Electronic Circulars (MPECs) for July 15 through July 18 reported an unusually high number of re-observations of known trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs). These were found in the Pan-...
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4 votes
2 answers
347 views

How much more massive would Pluto have to be to clear its neighborhood?

How much more massive would Pluto have to be to clear its neighborhood?
5 votes
1 answer
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Determination of orbital elements for Trans-Neptunian Objects, how?

How are orbits calculated for Trans-Neptunian Objects? I understand there are six standard parameters for defining an orbit (link) but I am not sure how telescope observations translate into these ...
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5 votes
0 answers
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Estimates for how many Trans-Neptunian Objects there are [duplicate]

The Minor Planet Center shows that we know of about 1350 Trans-Neptunian Objects (TNO's). I think it is safe to assume that we have not found all the TNO's there are to find, even the ones that we ...
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2 votes
2 answers
673 views

Is it proper to refer to objects beyond Neptune as "Kuiper Belt Objects?"

It seems to me that nowadays the more proper term is "Trans-Neptunian Object". Is there any difference between Kuiper Belt Objects and Trans-Neptunian Objects? If not, is one term preferred over the ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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How many observations does it take to determine the orbit of a TNO

Several observations of a distant solar object must be taken before determining its orbit, but in the case of objects discovered beyond Neptune's orbit, just how many are required over what period of ...
20 votes
2 answers
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Hypothetical trans-Neptunian planets orbiting the Sun

The planet HD 106906 b was found at 650 AU from its home star, a star not so different from the Sun. Fomalhaut b is also a young planet that is orbiting very far away from its star. These two planets ...