These new worlds looked and also behaved choose Pluto, however they were fully different indigenous every various other planet in our solar system. Therefore astronomers produced a new meaning of what renders a earth a planet. In 2006, the International astronomical Union made decision to reclassify Pluto together a dwarf planet, to the fury and confusion that the American public.
You are watching: Evidence that pluto is a planet
Following is a transcript the the video.
Narrator: back in the "90s, most world took Pluto for granted. Fast-forward come 2006. Suddenly, Pluto was all Americans were talking about. Or rather, yelling about. Some people were for this reason angry, they were giving astronomers death threats.
Thierry Montmerle: world were therefore angry that they claimed that every the astronomers have to be placed on the wall and shot at.
Narrator: That"s Thierry Montmerle. He"s former general secretary because that the International huge Union. The same organization of the world"s astronomers that readjusted Pluto"s status from earth to dwarf world in 2006. And today, end 12 year later, civilization still have solid opinions whenever you ask: must Pluto it is in a planet again?
- I"m no really certain that I have an opinion of whether or no Pluto must be a planet.
Narrator: There"s obviously some confusion walk on here. So we did the following logical step. We checked out the professionals to settle this once and for all.
That"s Alan Stern. He leads NASA"s brand-new Horizons mission, i beg your pardon flew through Pluto in 2015.
Alan Stern: and in planetary science, where the experts in planets are, we call little planets "planets." us call big moons "planets." We contact all the planets around other stars "planets." and the astronomer"s meaning wouldn"t allow any the those to it is in planets.
Narrator: OK, so usually Stern says it counts on context. However why? ago in the early on "90s, Pluto was a planet, period. No paper definition needed. So what changed? by the late "90s, it was coming to be clear that Pluto wasn"t alone. Astronomers had found other civilizations in the very same region, dubbed the Kuiper belt. And some of them looked awfully similar to Pluto. Climate in 2005, astronomers found Eris, which estimates at the time argued was also larger than Pluto.
Mike Brown: on January 8 that this year, if looking with some old data that we had taken through the Samuel Oschin Telescope at Palomar Observatory, we found, much to ours surprise, an item three times more away 보다 Pluto. This will absolutely rewrite the history of astronomy textbooks.
Narrator: and also while these new worlds looked and also behaved like Pluto, castle were totally different from every other planet in ours solar system. Something had to it is in done. It to be clear that astronomers were in need of something castle never had before: a good meaning for what provides a planet a planet. For this reason in the wake of these brand-new discoveries, the IAU come up through a checklist. A planet have to orbit the sun, have a practically round shape, and have cleared its neighborhood, meaning no other big objects room nearby. And also that last need boots Pluto turn off Team Planet. Yes, that orbits the sun. Yes, it"s spherical. However Pluto isn"t always the dominant gravitational pressure in that is neighborhood. For one thing, Eris shares the an ar and isn"t stuck in Pluto"s orbit. The end result? Pluto is bumped native "planet" come "dwarf planet." Now, Stern says that a dwarf earth is a sort of planet. Similar to how
Stern: The bonsai tree is quiet a tree. And also a Chihuahua is quiet a dog.
Narrator: but other experts, like Montmerle, favor to think that dwarf planets as their own class. So where does the leave us? Well, in the grand scheme of things, that doesn"t really issue what Pluto"s main designation is.
Montmerle: If civilization don"t like it, they don"t usage it, period.
Narrator: i beg your pardon is precisely what planetary scientists do.
Stern: for this reason everyone"s utilizing the planetary scientist"s an interpretation in the written, refereed clinical literature. And also using it in ~ the podium in giving scientific presentations. That"s the type of consensus that"s very powerful in science.
Narrator: So maybe Pluto isn"t a earth the same means that Earth and also Jupiter are planets. However that doesn"t typical we should ignore it. Besides, there"s much more to this dwarf world than meets the eye. The brand-new Horizons mission has uncovered evidence of ice volcanoes, hidden oceans.
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Stern: There are evidence for icefalls and also floes and also glaciers. Just tremendous stuff.