Planet Nine does exist in our solar system


"The possibility of a new planet is certainly an exciting one for me as a planetary scientist and for all of us", said Jim Green, director of NASA's Planetary Science Division. This hypothetical ninth planet is thought to be much, much bigger than any dwarf planet, and would be several times the size of Earth based on the calculations which point to its existence.

While computer simulations of the solar system with Planet Nine show more objects tilt owing to the solar plane - which made Brown realise that five such objects are already known to exist.

The research paper published earlier this month even suggests that planet 9 could be 10 times the mass of Earth.

Dr Konstantin Batygin, a planetary astrophysicist at the California Institute of Technology, said that there were five different lines of observational evidence which pointed to the existence of Planet Nine. For instance, a tilting of the Solar System is clearly present, and assuming there is no ninth planet at the edge which inclines the balance would cause more problems than solve.

Batygin said: "No other model can explain the weirdness of these high-inclination orbits".

But the conspiracy theorists could be onto something when it comes to Planet Nine.

Computer generated simulations of the solar system show that numerous objects in the belt formed a 90-degree angle with the plane of the solar system to form an X-shaped pattern with them.

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The researchers believe that the detection of the Ninth Planet is the key to details about its origin.

A second article by Batygin's team, led by Elizabeth Bailey, showed that Planet Nine could have tilted the planets of our solar system during the last 4.5 billion years.

"But these orbits also are tilted the same way, about 30 degrees "downward" compared to the pancake-like plane within which the planets orbit the sun".

Finally, the researchers demonstrate how Planet Nine's presence could explain why Kuiper Belt objects orbit in the opposite direction from everything else in the solar system.

There are also some objects in the Kuiper Belt which orbit the sun the "wrong" way.

Dr Dimitri Veras of the Department of Physics said: "The existence of a distant massive planet could fundamentally change the fate of the solar system".

Researchers are now using the advanced Subaru Telescope, in Hawaii, in the hope of finding out more it and where it came from.