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Category Archives: Dwarf Planets
Contrary to what Jerry Smith says in Rick and Morty, Pluto is not a planet. But why did Pluto lose this designation in 2006? The International Astronomical Union has 3 main criteria to determine what is a planet and what is not. These three criteria are: having an orbit around the sun, having sufficient massContinue reading “Why isn’t Pluto a planet?” Continue reading → Continue reading
There are many celestial bodies in the Kuiper Belt. One notable object is a dwarf planet named Makemake. This dwarf planet was one of the objects NASA used to demote Pluto from its previous planet status down to dwarf planet status. NASA wasn’t aware of other bodies that looked like Pluto, and when they foundContinue reading “Dwarf Perspective” Continue reading → Continue reading
Pluto was discovered in 1930, and was classified as a planet. In 2006, as most of us probably know, Pluto was reclassified as a dwarf planet. A significant amount of the population, whether justified or not, are opposed to the removal of Pluto from the official list of planets, primarily out of nostalgia for oneContinue reading “Meet Makemake: The Dwarf Planet Partially Responsible for Pluto’s Demotion” Continue reading → Continue reading
Makemake is a reddish-brown dwarf planet in the outer solar system and the fourth body identified as a dwarf planet; it, along with Eris and Haumea, were responsible for Pluto’s drop in status from planet to dwarf planet. It is the second brightest known object in the outer solar system (behind Pluto) and is 870 miles (1,400 … Continue reading Makemake → Continue reading → Continue reading
In 1801, Ceres was discovered by Father Giuseppe Piazzi, who believed it to be a planet or “new star.” Originally, Ceres was classified as a planet. However, after more objects were discovered in the asteroid belt, Ceres was demoted to an asteroid in the 1850s. Today, Ceres is classified as a dwarf planet. Ceres is … Continue reading Ceres: Smallest Dwarf Planet or Biggest Asteroid? → Continue reading → Continue reading
In 2015, scientists discovered what they call the giant red whale on Pluto’s surface. This is simply a red part of Pluto that vaguely takes the shape of a whale. Their theory is that it was created by a giant impactor, most likely the same one that lead to Charon, Pluto’s large moon. We knew … Continue reading The Giant Red Whale Continue reading → Continue reading
While Earthlings seem to have a general adoration (borderline obsession) with the personified Pluto, the planet itself does present several scientific marvels and interests. One such fascinating feature of Pluto is in it’s region known as Sputnik Planum. This weirdly smooth section of the planet is segmented into cellular units, and a proposed reason for… Continue reading Here’s Some Information About Pluto So It Feels Less RejectedContinue reading → Continue reading
April fools! I know I am a day late with this, but I was surprised to find that this was a common thread appearing on my Facebook feed over the weekend. As is common when “news” appears on social media, an “article” was being passed around that seemingly few people even bothered to read. Instead, the headline […]Continue reading → Continue reading
Many of us remember Pluto as the used-to-be 9th planet in our solar system that was demoted to a dwarf planet. So what makes Pluto a dwarf planet and not a planet? What is interesting about Pluto, and, if it was so small, how exactly was it discovered earlier than other dwarf planets?Continue reading → Continue reading
Pluto has been a topic of fascination for astronomers for a long time now. With the recent flyby of the New Horizons Spacecraft, a new image of Pluto has captivated the world. Pluto has a heart. Well not actually a heart but a region that looks like a heart! I guess Pluto is really […] Continue reading → Continue reading