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In recent years, American astronomers have said that they believe that a ninth planet exists on the outer edges of our solar system. Despite their “strong evidence”, no one has seen the planet yet. This hasn’t stopped astronomers from believing that it almost definitely exists.
Researchers have well-documented studies showing that other objects in space are affected by another “thing” – an effect attributed to Planet X, also known as Planet Nine.
More recently, Yale University researchers have begun to find and construct new ways to identify the currently invisible globe.
They hope to be able to see the night sky in a different light with telescopes by using a “shift and stacking technique” that could help with the hunt.
Even without photographic or physical evidence of the planet – which is believed to continue to exist than Pluto – many scientists have expressed their ultimate belief in the being of the planet.
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Konstantin Batygin, a Russian-American astronomer and professor of planetary science at Caltech University, even went so far as to say last year that the probability that Planet X exists is 99.9 percent certain.
During a documentary on the science channel Veritasium, Prof. Batygin, when asked if he still believes the planet exists with a 99.8 percent chance of existence, Prof. Batygin replied, “Something like that, yes.
“In fact, I had now pushed it higher – to a probability of 99.9 percent.”
However, a colleague of Prof. Batygin immediately said, “I mean, this is wishful thinking.
“If you are so sure, find it!”
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Prof. Batygin is one of the main proponents and researchers studying the existence of Planet X in the field of astronomy.
Other scientists who have worked by his side and independently believe that Planet X is ten times larger than Earth.
It also looks like it could be 20 times further away than Neptune.
This means that it has a very long orbit – each loop around the sun would take between 10,000 and 20,000 years.
The early roots for Planet X’s existence go back to 1781, when Uranus was first discovered by William Herschel.
When the astronomer discovered the planet, he immediately noticed that the “star” moving across the sky had been pictured many times before.
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To understand why this was so, Mr. Herschel went back to ancient observations and traced the orbit that Uranus had followed before its discovery.
Astronomers and mathematicians of the time noticed a discrepancy with the orbit of the newly discovered planet: it deviated from the route it was supposed to follow.
The French mathematician Urbain Le Verrier developed some of the most complicated calculations of his day to solve Uranus’ orbit question a few years later.
He said a hidden, as yet undiscovered planet would explain Uranus’ strange orbit – this led to the one night discovery of the eighth planet, Neptune.
A similar discrepancy with Neptune and other planets in the outer regions of our solar system has now led scientists to believe that a ninth planet – Planet X – does indeed exist.
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At Yale, Malena Rice, a PhD student in astronomy, worked with astronomy professor Greg Laughlin to find “dark” signals from three known trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs) – small bodies orbiting the sun beyond the orbit of Neptune – using shifted images from the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) from NASA.
Ms. Rice said, “If any of these candidate objects were real, it would help us understand the dynamics of the outer solar system and the likely properties of Planet Nine – it’s compelling new information.”
Ms. Rice said, “If any of these candidate objects were real, it would help us understand the dynamics of the outer solar system and the likely properties of Planet Nine,” said Rice. “It forces new information.”
Despite the increasing evidence for a ninth planet, many scientists are reluctant to consent to Prof. Batygin’s research.
Ethan Siegel, an American theoretical astrophysicist who specializes in, for example, the Big Bang theory, claims that the surveys used to identify evidence for Planet X do not go deep enough.
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In a 2018 Forbes piece, Siegel praised the work of Prof. Batygin and described the intensified observations of a ninth planet as promising.
However, he argued that the observed Trans-Neptunian objects and their orbits, for which Planet X would be responsible, should be in a particular region of the sky rather than appearing sporadically.
He says that these discoveries made by Prof. Batygin and his colleagues may not seem out of the ordinary, but actually “more likely that you (Batygin et al.) Are the victim of a phenomenon known as detection bias”.
Other scientists have raised similar concerns about what is known as detection bias.