It is known that the Milky Way is the solar system home to Earth and seven other planets (after Pluto’s disqualification). However, astronomers are fairly certain that a “Rogue Planet” might have entered into Milky Way. The still-unnamed and unverified planet is being called Planet Nine.
Rogue Planet Vs Normal Planet
Rogue planets are planets that do not belong to any particular solar system and are not located around a star. Hence, they wander freely around galaxies, frequently coming in contact with several solar systems.
A “normal” planet, as we all know, belongs to a particular solar system and orbits around a star. Earth is the perfect example in this regard, as it orbits around the sun.
As it turns out, so-called rogue planets outnumber the grounded ones. Hence, it is common for a solar system to encounter rogue planets every now and then.
James Vesper, undergraduate at New Mexico State University (NMSU), along with Paul Mason, NMSU math and physical science professor, demonstrated 156 simulations showing encounters between the Milky Way and other rogue planets in the past. Vesper pointed out that 60% of the time, rogue planets never stay long with any specific solar system.
Is Planet Nine Troublesome?
However, 10% of the time that they are ousted from the solar system, they tend to take one or more of the native planets with them! A native planet may be flung from its own solar system in 40% of cases a rogue planet stays with a solar system, reported Space.
This is so the rogue planets make space for themselves in the solar family. However, there are also friendly rogue planets such as Neptune, which entered the Milky Way long ago by “soft capture.”
Massive masses like Neptune have the capability to mess up the entire solar system. But it stayed put without causing tension.
The existence of Planet Nine was first proposed by astronomers Scott Sheppard and Chadwick Trujillo, of the Carnegie Institution for Science in Washington, D.C. and the Gemini Observatory in Hawaii, in 2014. Astronomers and scientists have been scrambling since to find conceivable details on the mysterious planet ever since.
Planet Nine may be responsible for stirring up unexplained disruptions in the orbits of distant neighboring planets. This includes Sedna, the dwarf planet. However, scientists are yet to confirm information related to Planet Nine.