Why is Pluto Not A Planet ?

Pluto is technically a “dwarf planet,” because it has not “cleared its neighboring region of other objects.” This means that Pluto still has lots of asteroids and other space rocks along its flight path, rather than having absorbed them over time, like the larger planets have done.

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Why is pluto not a planet
Why is pluto not a planet

Pluto has been a beloved object in our solar system for many years, but in 2006, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) made the decision to demote Pluto from being a planet to a dwarf planet. This decision was not made lightly, and it was based on several scientific factors that distinguished Pluto from the other planets in our solar system. In this article, we will delve into the reasons why Pluto is no longer considered a planet.


Size

One of the main criteria for a celestial body to be considered a planet is that it must be large enough to have its own gravitational force, which makes it round or nearly round. Pluto, however, is relatively small, with a diameter of only 2,377 kilometers, making it smaller than some of the moons in our solar system, including our own moon. By contrast, the eight planets in our solar system are much larger than Pluto and are massive enough to have their own gravitational pull.

Orbit

Another requirement for a celestial body to be considered a planet is that it must have cleared its orbit of other objects. This means that it must be the largest gravitational force in its orbit, removing any debris or other celestial bodies that may be present. However, Pluto shares its orbit with other objects in the Kuiper Belt, a region beyond Neptune that contains icy objects. Some of these objects are even larger than Pluto, such as Eris, which is about the same size as Pluto.

Pluto is a dwarf planet
Pluto is a dwarf planet

Neighborhood

A planet must also orbit the Sun, not around another celestial body. Pluto, however, orbits the Sun within the Kuiper Belt, a region that contains many icy objects. Some of these objects are also classified as dwarf planets. Therefore, Pluto’s status as a planet was in question since it orbits the Sun within the same region as other dwarf planets.

Classification

The definition of a planet has evolved over time. The new definition of a planet is based on scientific characteristics and properties rather than historical or cultural significance. Pluto’s classification as a planet was based on a different set of criteria than what we use today. In 2006, the IAU determined that Pluto did not meet the criteria to be considered a planet under the new definition, so it was reclassified as a dwarf planet.


Conclusion In conclusion, the IAU’s decision to demote Pluto from a planet to a dwarf planet was based on scientific criteria that distinguish it from the other planets in our solar system. Although Pluto may have lost its status as a planet, it remains a significant object in our solar system. It is one of the largest known objects in the Kuiper Belt, and scientists continue to study it to learn more about the formation and evolution of our solar system. The reclassification of Pluto is a reminder that science is constantly evolving, and our understanding of the universe is always changing.

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