Hacker 'Discovers' New Planet
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  1. #1
    Senior Member hesperus's Avatar
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    Hacker 'Discovers' New Planet

    Hacker forced new planet discovery out of the closet

    10th planet found two years ago

    By Nick Farrell: Monday 01 August 2005, 07:39
    BOFFINS WHO discovered that there was a 10th planet in our solar system, had been sitting on the news for years until a hacker turned over their servers.

    Michael Brown, a planetary scientist at the California Institute of Technology, announced the discovery over the weekend. But according to the South African Sunday Telegraph, here, the briefing was hastily arranged after Brown received word that his secure website containing the discovery had been hacked. The unnamed hacker was threatening to release the information.

    It transpired that Brown and his friends had been sitting on the information since 2003 when they snapped it with a 122cm telescope at the Palomar Observatory. However they couldnít confirm much about it until it was analysed again last January. So in the time honoured tradition of boffins everywhere they decided to keep the data from the common people until they knew a bit more.

    Brown said that data is still being processed and it will take at least six months before astronomers can determine the planetís exact size. The planet seems to be about 1.5 times the size of Pluto, which is usually dubbed a planetoid because it is so small.

    The find should further stuff up modern astrologers - they still have not got the hang of Uranus.
    Thats the whole article, but here's the link : http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=25031
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  2. #2
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    Hi hesperus,

    Technically we have eight planets....Pluto and these other rocks are in an asteroid belt just beyond Neptune that are potential comets....ever once in awhile one gets kicked out...Pluto is the largest of these rocks and scientists say it should never have been considered a planet...by definition...if Pluto is a planet then about 100 of these rocks in this belt could also be considered planets.
    Pluto got it's distinction of being a planet because it's gravity is enough to make it circular...but most scientists suggest that the definition of a planet should include it's own independant orbit around the sun...and Pluto is a rock in an asteroid belt.

    Eg

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    Senior Member hesperus's Avatar
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    The very definition of what constitutes a planet is currently being debated by Boss and others in a working group of the International Astronomical Union. Boss said the group has not reached consensus after six months of discussion.

    The debate actually stretches back more than five years and is rooted in the fact that astronomers have never had a definition for the word "planet," because the nine we knew seemed obvious.

    "This discovery will likely re-ignite a healthy debate about what is and what is not a planet," Boss said.
    The object is inclined by a whopping 45 degrees to the main plane of the solar system, where most of the other planets orbit. That's why it eluded discovery: nobody was looking there until now, Brown said.
    http://www.space.com/scienceastronom...ew_planet.html

    The incline of its orbit suggests that it is independent of the Kupier belt, no ? But if the IAU doesn't know what a planet is, then I sure don't. In Greek it means 'wanderer' because their paths shift around in the night sky unlike the stars. They knew seven. I am happy to stay with that.

    A few sites I read suggested that the hack may have been made by a rival group of astronomers. In any case, it seems these guys could use a little security advice.

    "We had to assume that the [stranger's use of Brown's data] was malicious and that the person was going to use the information to attempt to claim he had discovered the objects himself. Thus we had to announce late on a Friday afternoon with no preparation," Brown wrote in an e-mail interview.

    Marsden does not suspect that Ortiz's team is responsible for the suspected foul play. He also noted that Internet insecurity has made it tougher for scientists to check and double-check their findings before going public.
    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/n...wplanet_2.html
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    Hi hesperus,

    According to NASA's own site...
    The planet is a typical member of the Kuiper belt,
    it is a member of the asteroid belt.

    Although I find it a bit strange they haven't updated it...because this article says it's larger than Pluto...when they've reversed that already and said it's alot smaller....seeing as they fund the project you'd think they'd keep up to date with it.

    http://www.nasa.gov/vision/universe/...et-072905.html
    NASA - NASA-Funded Scientists Discover Tenth Planet

    Eg

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    Senior Member hesperus's Avatar
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    you'd think they'd keep up to date with it.
    Yeah, well it sounds like the scientists themselves would have liked to wait a little longer to iron out the details before going public. Alas they were compromised.
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    Originally posted here by Egaladeist
    Hi hesperus,

    Technically we have eight planets....Pluto and these other rocks are in an asteroid belt just beyond Neptune
    Yeah, but Pluto is "special". It has a dissimilar orbit, its orbit is so jacked they once thought it to be a satellite of Neptune. Until super-computers came along then they ran models which gave back the odds of that little scenario. The reason for this is because every 200-300 years Pluto is closer to the Sun than Neptune, which makes it the 8th planet out. It stays that way for a few decades as well. Plus its tilt is peculiar and it's bright.

    Originally posted here by Egaladeist

    that are potential comets....ever once in awhile one gets kicked out...Pluto is the largest of these rocks and scientists say it should never have been considered a planet...by definition...if Pluto is a planet then about 100 of these rocks in this belt could also be considered planets.
    Pluto got it's distinction of being a planet because it's gravity is enough to make it circular...but most scientists suggest that the definition of a planet should include it's own independant orbit around the sun...and Pluto is a rock in an asteroid belt.

    Eg
    Pluto is ice and rock.... just like the other rocky planets Earth, Mars etc... except Pluto is not in the inner-SS.

    Did the boys at Caltech come out and say that it's smaller not bigger now? Give me a link.

  7. #7
    Senior Member RoadClosed's Avatar
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    Pluto has been the dabate central for decades. In fact some lectures are debate free in that they introduce Pluto as a "planet or not". I always thought it was kicked out of the K. Belt. So I guess that is debatable as well.
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    Hi RoadClosed,

    Given the topic of debate when it comes to inconsequental information such as the location of a presumed planet I tend to side with NASA ...working upon the assumption that they should know if anybody does...just like I defer to you guys when it comes to computers...each experts in their own fields.

    Eg

  9. #9
    Senior Member RoadClosed's Avatar
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    NASA is a great organization. Perhaps the greatest scientific body on the planet. But let me amuse myself by saying the greatest astronomers and cosmologists, planetologists etc don't always work for NASA.
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    Hi RoadClosed,

    But most are funded by NASA

    and thanks for the compliment in the other thread in Cosmos

    Eg

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