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There could be an Earth-like planet hiding in our solar system, a study has found

There could be an Earth-like planet hiding in our solar system, a study has found

This planet could be located well beyond the orbit of Neptune, and may explain the strange orbits of some objects. The theory is new compared to the Planet X theory

The far reaches of the solar system are a dark, distant world with details that elude us. Away from sunlight, even a relatively large planet can easily escape our attention. The trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs) we discovered there, outside the orbit of Neptune, exhibit some behaviors that may indicate the existence of a hidden world. This is what prompted scientists to propose the idea of ​​a planetMore information here).

The new theory

Planet Earth
Artist's impression of an Earth-like planet. Source: Goddard Space Flight Center/NASA

Now, two scientists have found an alternative explanation: a more modest Earth-like world located far away Closer than the disputed planet An oblique orbit can explain strange behaviors attributed to the presence of something larger. According to planetary scientists Patrick Sofia Likuka of Kindai University in Japan and Takashi Ito of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, this icy, dark world far from the sun would be no more than three times the mass of Earth and would be found outside the orbit of Neptune. Now, with a series of new data, scientists have discovered the properties of a hypothetical planet that could explain many of the planet's distinctive properties. Kuiper belt. Further observations can determine whether they are right or not.

Characteristics of this virtual planet

This Earth-like planet will have a mass between 1.5 and 3 times the mass of the Earth, and its orbit will be the furthest point from the Sun between 250 and 500 astronomical units, and its inclination will be 30 degrees relative to the plane of the Sun. System. Its presence could explain objects with inclinations greater than 45 degrees and the orbits of objects such as the dwarf planet Sedna, which has an exceptionally strange and elongated orbit. It could also explain the properties of TNO clusters that appear to be associated with Neptune and are often excluded from such studies. Certainly, further observations and studies will tell us more.

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