At the moment, our solar system has eight known planets, but what if there is a ninth planet lurking in our solar system that we are yet to observe.
The overall chances of that being the case are in favor of Planet Nine not existing, however, a new study has put forward evidence that suggests that there is "something" out there causing a gravitational phenomenon. Astronomers have observed Kuiper belt objects (KBOs) and noticed that instead of being in random motion, they are in clusters, regardless of the objects classifications.
This observation of the clustering of KBOs leads researchers to believe there is an undiscovered celestial body with significant mass causing a gravitational anomaly. In 2016, researchers came to that very conclusion when they released a study that calculated the undiscovered celestial body to have a mass of around five Earth's and be around 10 times the distance between Neptune and the Sun. However, astronomers searched for this Planet Nine it couldn't be found.
Now, a new study that aimed to mitigate the criticisms of the 2016 study has put out new evidence that suggests there is only a 0.4% chance the KBOs clustering could have happened without a celestial body with significant mass being involved - such as a planet. Ultimately, the discussion of Planet Nine's existence is still open, and hopefully, astronomers will be able to put the debate to bed once the James Webb Space Telescope is launched and operational.
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