Monday, January 5, 2009

Astronomers to fight for ‘planet’ Pluto in 2009

London: This 2009, a group of astronomers is planning to overturn the ruling, which says that Pluto is not the ninth planet of our solar systm.
In August 2006,the International
Astronomical Union (IAU), ruled that there are no longer nine planets in the Solar System, and downgraded Pluto to the lowly status of a “dwarf planet”.
But in 2009, Mark Sykes, director of the Planetary Science Institute in the US – along with like-minded colleagues – hope to get the ruling overturned at the next meeting of the IAU, to be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in August.
“To me and others like me, Pluto
remains a planet and there are still nine planets in the Solar System,” Dr Sykes said. “The one thing that was particularly bad about the IAU’s decision is that it has tried to impose its view on the rest of us.”
The row over Pluto’s downgrading has been simmering since the astronomy organisation voted to relegate it in August 2006 in Prague.

It was agreed at the last vote of that conference – after many scientists had left.

“The IAU definition is so flawed on so many levels,” said Alan Stern, principal investigator on a NASA mission, New Horizons.

“It’s an awful definition; it’s sloppy science and it would never pass peer review,” he added.

The IAU coined the term ‘plutoid’ for objects like Pluto, which, while massive enough to form a near-spherical shape, do not have the gravitational influence to clear the neighbourhood around their orbit of other objects.

But,Dr Sykes disagrees.

“Pluto is far more like Earth than Earth is like Jupiter.Jupiter is a gas planet. It doesn’t even have a surface or topography, unlike Pluto,” he said.

“The argument over Pluto is a demonstration that scientists can disagree and that science is not some dictatorial project – it’s dynamic,” he added.


  1. I support Pluto's reinstatement as a planet.

  2. pluto is a planet

  3. I think that pluto should be a planet because even thought it does not fit under eather of the catigories of terrestrial planets or non-terrestrial planets they should still count it as one. Pluto should be included because it is not an asteroid and a lot of people think this. It might be small but I think that it is a planet.

  4. The change of status is more for the IAU than for anyone else. The real reason is that there are many objects past Pluto's orbit, Eris being larger than Pluto. If Pluto was still considered a planet, then right now we would have to list a total of 13 Planets, including Ceres, Eris, Makemake and Haumea; eventually the list would grow even larger.
    Also it is not the first time an object has had its status changed from a planet: The Sun, the Moon, Ceres, Pallas, Juno, Vesta, Astrea, Hebe, Iris, Flora, Metis, Hygeia, Parthenope, Victoria, Egeria, Irene, and Eunomia.
    The IAU is not saying that Pluto is not a fascinating world worth researching; nor are Eris, Ceres, other plutoids like Sedna, the many asteroids, comets or other objects out there.
    It was simply a way for the IAU to simply their lists. The concern over Pluto's status is mostly sentimental.

  5. pluto isnt a planet it's gods balls

  6. I still think pluto is a planet its even got its own little moon! no matter what i will consider it a planet always.

  7. Thats awsome to see that alot of people think pluto is a planet! I also think it is one. And if you ask me its an amazing one.

  8. Does it really matter?

  9. Pluto is a planet if not then what is it? asteriod or moon Humm... let me see...pluto doesn't exactly have a potato shape, its not governed by another planet and it goes around the sun. So that means its not a planet? yeah... right, they finally figured it out.

  10. i think pluto is a planet because its just small its not a dwarf planet or whatever you want to call it its just small.

  11. Yeah, pluto should be considered a planet. I don't care about any definitions. It should have the honorary title of a planet. They can't just change their mind willynilly all the time. We got to grandfather in Pluto's Planet status, or else we should boycott science...All science.

  12. its a freaking palnet NASA
    get over it and stop trying to sound smart

    Yours that Likes Pie,
    Nathan B

  13. If you include Pluto as a planet then we will have to include Eris, Ceres and many other dwarf planets, we have 8 planets not 200+ bodies out there that are spherical.

  14. The trouble with the planet definition is that it's arbitrary. While I certainly hope the IAU holds no prejudice against Pluto, they decided it wasn't a planet because it has more in common with Eris, etc., than the other bodies we call planets. To me this doesn't really hold water. As it stands now a planet has to clear its space of debris, but the only thing this really accomplishes is to allow the IAU to say we have eight planets instead of 13 or however many we eventually find. I have to wonder though--is there really any scientific value in stripping Pluto of its planetary status or denying that status to Eris or Ceres? Surely someone working in the relevant fields knows enough about these celestial objects to not become confused if we say Pluto is a planet. And honestly, is there anything scientific we can say about the eight remaining planets that we can't say about Pluto other than the things used to make the definition? The whole thing is a farce.

  15. Pluto will remain a planet in the solar system

  16. no matter what anyone says, everyone is going to still consider it a planet. I think that was a stupid choice to pull pluto from the list of planets. PLUTO IS A PLANET!!! IT'S TIME TO FACE FACTS!!!!! SO GET OVER IT!!

  17. I am only 14 but I grew up knowing that there were 9 planets in the solar system. My teachers told me it was lowered to the status of a 'dwarf' planet, because it was too small to be a planet. But I have questions for the scientists that changed the status of Pluto.
    If too small to be a planet and became a dwarf planet, (no offense) does that make any dwarfs any-less human? (again(no offense))

  18. "while massive enough to form a near-spherical shape, do not have the gravitational influence to clear the neighbourhood around their orbit of other objects" If it doesn't have gravitational influence then how come it has three moons?

  19. pluto is a planet, always has been and always will be. it has been ther in all of our learning, why abandon it now, what is the point?

  20. i support pluto as a planet.

  21. I'm an American

    Why should I care to decide what some 'ruling body' decides whether or not Pluto is a planet or not? Who the frak are they?

    Vulgate can determine meaning. Pluto is a planet.

    I just * love * (that's sarchasm) when people become so frakin full of themselves, that they think they can redfine vulgate terminilogy.