Dwarf Planets Spin Through the Solar System


For years, scientists have researched what lies within our solar system. Some objects they have studied are dwarf planets.

What are dwarf planets? These are planets that don't follow ‘planet rules.’ Some main planet rules include orbiting a star and the ability to clear floating objects around the planet. An example of this is Pluto, which on August 24, 2006, was renamed a dwarf planet because it couldn’t clear floating objects around it. Pluto isn’t just rock: the top of it has chunks of ice. If you stood on Pluto, the Sun would look as small as a tip of a pen.

A second dwarf planet is Eris, which is about the same size as Pluto. Eris is composed more of rock than ice, though Eris is also farther from the Sun and orbits at an average of 6.3 billion miles. This causes Eris to take 557 years to complete a single orbit around the Sun. Eris’ orbit is oddly shaped, which adds to the reasons why it is a dwarf planet.

A little bit closer to Pluto is another dwarf planet named Haumea. It's one of the strangest objects in our solar system. Haumea has 1,200 surface miles thus making it almost as wide as Pluto. But its mass is only one third the size of Pluto because Haumea is shaped like a giant football. Haumea spins around completely in less than four hours: this makes it one of the fastest spinning planets in our solar system. It also has two known moons- Hi'iaka and Namaka.

Many dwarf planets exist in our solar system- Pluto, Eris, and Haumea are just three scientists have begun to explore.

[Source: www.space.com]

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