Pluto Paper

Topics: Planet, Solar System, Dwarf planet Pages: 2 (650 words) Published: April 23, 2012
Ever since grade school you were taught that our solar system has nine planets. Sadly that is no longer the case; in 2006 astronomers have decided that Pluto no longer qualifies as a planet. Pluto is now considered a “Dwarf Planet” and has caused a lot of controversy among astronomers. A dwarf planet is not even considered to be a planet, and there are projected to be hundreds of them in our galaxy. Pluto is being demoted to what amounts as a third class citizen in our galaxy. Thousands of textbooks will have to be revised and changed in our schools just because of this one change they made to our solar system. According to the new definition for a planet, a full-fledged planet is an object that orbits the sun and is large enough to have become round due to the force of its own gravity. In addition, a planet has to dominate the neighborhood around its orbit. The definition is flawed, relating to “clear the neighborhood”. Every 228 years Pluto crosses inside of the orbit of Neptune, so technically speaking, it does not clear its neighborhood. But that also means that Neptune does not clear its own neighborhood. Mars and Jupiter don’t clear their neighborhoods as they “interfere” with the Asteroids, and the Earth actually orbits the Sun with thousands of Asteroids. So the Earth doesn’t clear its own neighborhood either. So if we use the new definition, Pluto, Neptune, Jupiter, Mars, and the Earth, are not planets! Otherwise Pluto fits the definition for a planet; it is from a faulty definition that Pluto is no longer allowed to be a planet. Also, a body’s difficulty in clearing its orbit or the volume of space that it must clear increases dramatically its distance from the sun increases. Clearing is most difficult for Pluto, the furthest “planet” from the sun. Furthermore, why aren’t “Dwarf Planets” known as planets? Dwarf Stars are still stars, and Dwarf Galaxies are still galaxies. If it has the word “planet” in it why is it not a planet? One of...
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