Researchers came out with a new definition to prove planetary status of Pluto; Expands the number of planets from eight to 110!

Researchers at Johns Hopkins University are bringing out a breakthrough outcome about the definition of a Planet that overwrites the current definition stated by  International Astronomical Union (IAU).

The International Astronomical Union in 2006 demoted Pluto from the list of planets as Pluto could not fulfill the definition of a planet. This reduced the number of planets in the solar system to 8 from 9.



The researchers at Johns Hopkins University proposed a new geophysical definition of a planet for use by educators, scientists, students, and the public. It states, 

A planet is a sub-stellar mass body that has never undergone nuclear fusion and that has sufficient self-gravitation to assume a spheroidal shape adequately described by a triaxial ellipsoid regardless of its orbital parameters.

In contrast, IAU defined a planet as: "Planets are only those objects orbiting our Sun, not those orbiting other stars or orbiting freely in the galaxy."

Runyon, lead author of a short paper making the pro-Pluto argument says that Pluto had been the smallest of the nine planets, its diameter under three-quarters that of the moon and nearly a fifth of Earth. Pluto has everything going on on its surface that you associate with a planet. There's nothing non-planet about it.

The proposed new geophysical definition omits stars, black holes, asteroids and meteorites, but includes much of everything else in our solar system. It would expand the number of planets from eight to approximately 110.

Also read: Egg shells and Tomato skins can now be used for making tires that are eco-friendly and sustainable: OSU Research


This number continues to grow as astronomers discover more and more planets. Certainly, 110 planets are more than students should be expected to memorize, and indeed they ought not. Instead, students should learn only a few (9? 12? 25?) planets of interest.

He has some reason to be optimistic, as the new definition has already been adopted by Planet Science Research Discoveries, an educational website founded by scientists at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa.

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