43 votes

What is the likelyhood that planet X is a glass (not a typo for gas) planet? What would it mean if it were for what we know of astronomy?

Zero chance. Even if the planet was made of glass, and was transparent, it would still radiate heat, as all warm objects do. Thus, we could find it with an infrared telescope. In fact, this is likely ...
Rob's user avatar
  • 2,036
13 votes
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Hypothetical trans-Neptunian planets orbiting the Sun

The recent possible discovery of Planet Nine by Batygin & Brown (2016) has caused quite a stir, in the astronomy community, Astronomy Stack Exchange, and the rest of the world. This is, of course, ...
HDE 226868's user avatar
  • 36k
13 votes

Could Planet X have a perihelion much closer than 300 AU and still be responsible for the gravitational interaction with 19 TNOs?

Well yes, because Brown & Batygin (2021) say the perihelion would be $300^{+85}_{-60}$ au, so there is roughly a 50% chance that the perihelion is smaller than 300 au according to their work. The ...
ProfRob's user avatar
  • 146k
11 votes
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Are satellites of trans-Neptunian objects classified as trans-Neptunian objects?

Yes/No as needed. The MPC, which is fairly authoritative, lists only (134340) Pluto, and doesn't include Charon and the other satellites of Pluto. Formally, binary asteroids are given a single ...
James K's user avatar
  • 116k
10 votes
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What does the Sun look like from Eris at its aphelion?

Light flux decreases as one over distance squared. So if Eris is 100 times further away from the Sun than the Earth is, then the amount of light that reaches Eris is 10 000 less than that on Earth. ...
usernumber's user avatar
  • 17.4k
9 votes

Why isn't Eris considered a planet despite being the body of dominant mass?

You are correct that the IAU definition of "clearing the orbit" has the problem of being not explicitly quantified. And a complete clearing was obviously never the intention behind the definition. I ...
SpaceCore's user avatar
  • 2,993
8 votes

What is the likelyhood that planet X is a glass (not a typo for gas) planet? What would it mean if it were for what we know of astronomy?

If you cool silicates quickly, you get glass. But planet-size objects cool slowly, making crystalline rock. Natural glasses like obsidian and Pele's hair only form from cooling magma at the surface.
John Doty's user avatar
  • 1,297
6 votes
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How long would an occultation by a TNO last?

From the observer's point of view 1 million km away, the TNO's apparent angular motion is $$\mathrm{\frac{8~m/s}{10^9~m} = 8 \times 10^{-9}~rad/s = 0.00165~^\circ/h}.$$ Assuming that the observer at ...
Mike G's user avatar
  • 18.2k
6 votes
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When might Rowan-Robinson's planet be discovered or disproved?

Essentially: probably no-one knows for sure unless a person who started the research themselves or is writing or has written a grant application to conduct the research, if at all so far. The paper ...
planetmaker's user avatar
  • 17.5k
5 votes
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How has the number of known TNOs evolved over time?

For this, I'll point you to the IAU's List of Transneptunian Objects. That page provides a table of every known TNO along with all sorts of data about each TNO, including date of discovery. You could ...
zephyr's user avatar
  • 15k
5 votes
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Observed data: Why so many MPECs about TNOs lately?

This is the result of a new way to investigate the images taken by the PanSTARRS survey, see Weryk et al. 2016. A second batch of new discoveries was issued on July 26. This has been planned for ...
Daniel Bamberger's user avatar
5 votes
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How official is TNO 486958, 2014 MU69's new name Arrokoth?

The International Astronomical Union describes this minor planet naming process: Minor Planet Center assigns provisional designation MPC assigns permanent designation Discoverer suggests name IAU ...
Mike G's user avatar
  • 18.2k
5 votes

How can a Grade-11 Student avail TESS data and learn to process?

I'll use the TESS satellite as an example, which you might use to look at transiting exoplanets for example. Go to https://heasarc.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/tess/data-access.html this gives you a list of ...
ProfRob's user avatar
  • 146k
4 votes
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Can the WISE telescope detect black holes?

Black holes are black. They are only observed directly by telescopes if they are accreting matter. Any radiation observed comes from the matter surrounding the black hole. Generally speaking, the ...
ProfRob's user avatar
  • 146k
3 votes

Which celestial body is able to come closest to Pluto?

Quaoar's orbit should bring it within about 670,000,000km (~4.48 AU) of Pluto in ~150 years, according to the scale model in Universe Sandbox.
Kazon's user avatar
  • 567
3 votes

Which celestial body is able to come closest to Pluto?

Among neighborhood-clearing planets, it is not Neptune but Uranus that comes closest to Pluto. Uranus comes within a minimum of about 11 AU from Pluto. While the ellipses that make up the orbits of ...
Oscar Lanzi's user avatar
  • 1,055
3 votes

What is the likelyhood that planet X is a glass (not a typo for gas) planet? What would it mean if it were for what we know of astronomy?

Even a very high purity glass is not transparent at planetary sizes. No glass is fully transparent and the amount of scattered light increases exponentially with the optical path length (the thickness ...
WaterMolecule's user avatar
2 votes

Why is the Kuiper belt called like this?

Compiling my comments into an answer. Kuiper belt is a "belt" because majority of the bodies reside in the ecliptic plane and relatively low inclination. There are handful of exceptions but ...
Nilay Ghosh's user avatar
  • 4,393
2 votes
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Computationally intensive technique to search for TNO's within the noise of historical photographic data?

Dark Energy Survey data have yielded several TNO discoveries. Bernardinelli et al. 2020 describe their method in detail. First they compute a trial orbit from images where a transient object was ...
Mike G's user avatar
  • 18.2k
2 votes

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

Not necessarily. There are lot of factors affecting the existence of a planet's atmosphere, the most predominant are: 1. Composition of the atmosphere. 2.Composition of the planet itself. 3. Star 4. ...
Kavin Ishwaran's user avatar
2 votes

Has the rotation of Eris and Dysnomia been observed?

Has the rotation of Eris and Dysnomia been observed? is it possible to shoot multiple images of them to see how they rotate around each other? Has this been attempted? Yes! Yes! and Yes! From the ...
uhoh's user avatar
  • 31.4k
1 vote

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

The question as asked cannot be answered easily; there too many parameters which determine the thickness of a planet's atmosphere. The main factors are the surface temperature and the planetary mass (...
planetmaker's user avatar
  • 17.5k
1 vote

When will 2002 MS4 be named?

Actually anyone can name this Dwarf Planet at this point, it just has to follow the guidelines specified in the link above.. Dr. Jan Ticha at the IAU is the one that receives the submissions.
OrcustheDwarf's user avatar
1 vote

When will 2002 MS4 be named?

If the discoverers don't propose a name (and they have a 10 year interval in which to do so) then the object remains unnamed. This minor solar system body has a permanent designation, "307261&...
James K's user avatar
  • 116k
1 vote
Accepted

Are there any known low-inclination trans-Neptunian objects?

Queries to the JPL Small Body Database or the ESA Asteroids Dynamic Site for such bodies return several results. Some of the bigger ones are: Centaurs with H < 10 and i < 4° 386968 (2012 BR61), ...
Mike G's user avatar
  • 18.2k
1 vote
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Is there or will there be any search after a primordial black hole 500 au from the Sun?

Maybe, Harvard scientists have proposed a way to determine, once and for all, whether Planet Nine actually could be a black hole. Specifically, the new method would scour the outer solar system for ...
Natsfan's user avatar
  • 4,476
1 vote
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Trans-Neptunian Dwarf Planet near Heliopause

Heliopause is believed to be at a distance of about 123 AU away from the Sun. Now, if you look at the list of farthest body in the solar system, you will see two bodies located approximately at that ...
Nilay Ghosh's user avatar
  • 4,393

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