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Caltech Scientists Find New Ninth Planet

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 Astronomy   |   Physics   |   Science
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Caltech researchers may have discovered a new planet in the outer reaches of our solar system. With a mass 10 times that of Earth, the new planet is said to take between 10,000 and 20,000 years to orbit the sun. According to Konstantin Batygin, an assistant professor of planetary science, "although we were initially quite skeptical that this planet could exist, as we continued to investigate its orbit and what it would mean for the outer solar system, we become [sic.] increasingly convinced that it is out there." Occupying the Kuiper Belt, a region of the solar system beyond Neptune filled with comets, dwarf planets and Pluto - which was recently downgraded from planetary status, scientist Mike Brown said of the as-of-yet unconfirmed discovery: "This would be a real ninth planet," adding, "there have only been two true planets discovered since ancient times, and this would be a third. It's a pretty substantial chunk of our solar system that's still out there to be found, which is pretty exciting."

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