And then there were eight: Pluto no longer a planet

[Darth Vader] “Emperor, the destruction of the planet Pluto proceeded without incident. I am moving the Deathstar into orbit around the planet Uranus awaiting further targeting instructions.” breathe [/Darth Vader]

Now that just makes no sense. Just the other day, I found this article, also from the IAU stating that under a new definition of “planet,” Pluto was in. Now they say it isn’t. What gives? The definition in the article I found specified two conditions:
[li]The body must be in orbit about a star without being either a star itself or a satellite of another planet.[/li][li]The body must have sufficient gravity to be formed into a nearly spherical shape.[/li][/ul]
Pluto had those two covered. But the article you posted seems to imply that they added a third condition:

When did they decide to add that? Why isn’t Neptune also out? Both of them are planets by the first two requirements but their orbits intersect. Why does Pluto get bumped but not Neptune? This just seems odd.

Actually, shouldn’t that be more like, “Most Violent Extraterrestrial Monsters Just Seek Unnatural Neighbours”? :slight_smile:

Why is everyone here protesting? This is an attempt to shed the ignorance of the varied objects in the solar system, and everybody wants to ignore it in favor of outdated thinking?

Besides, I always wondered why a dog had a pet dog. Bondage?

… they should have added planets, but I see the reasoning.

I’m still trying to figure out what “cleared the neighborhood around its orbit” means. Can someone translate this into plain English?

Who had a pet dog, now?

Goofy, of course. :slight_smile: Although, wasn’t Pluto Mickey’s dog?

I’ve merged JR Brown and ivylass’ threads.

Cajun Man
for the SDMB

I think it’s the astronomical equivalent of “You smaller celestial bodies, get off my lawn!”

No, no, no. Pluto is a dog. Goofy is a dawg. Haven’t you been keeping up on your classics?

Grandfather clauses have a long and distinguished history in science. The taxonomical grandfather clause allows the scientific name of the boa constrictor to remain Boa constrictor even though it was first decribed under another name (some awful thing I have forgotten). Too bad it wasn’t proposed in time to save Eohippus. So the IAU could have passed their new rules for planethood and still given Pluto special exemption. 76 years of planethood shouldn’t be lightly dismissed.

Plus, it’s a cute little iceball and it’s all sad and lonely out there now.


Mother Very Easily Made Jelly Sandwiches Under No … :confused:

As far as I can tell, it means that all nearby objects orbit it - that it’s not in a belt of rubble such as the asteroid belt or Kuiper Belt. AFAICT, Pluto doesn’t count because it’s not the barycentre of its system - Charon and Pluto orbit a common point above the surfaces of either. Folks, feel free to tell me if I’m à côté de la traque.

Incidentally, all the news sources are reporting that Pluto is being demoted “because its orbit intersects with Neptune’s”, which is ridiculous. AFAICT having an eccentric orbit has no bearing on the matter, and Pluto’s orbit doesn’t intersect with Neptune’s anyway (they never come any closer to one another than 30 AUs).

better. :smiley:

[Stormtrooper]He said ‘Ur-anus’ giggle snort
gack! I’m sorry, my Lord! I didnt’ gasp mean anything gack by it![/Stormtrooper]

So if it’s now reclassified as a dwarf planet, does this mean we’ll have to give it a new name?

My vote is for Grumpy. I’d be grumpy, too, if my planetary status were suddenly yanked away after so long.

Although Bashful might work, too.

What with that orbital tilt and all, Dopey or Sleazy might be just as good…

My Ventilated Exoskeleton Machine Joins Skin Unto Needles.

Or Drunky, on that note…

Morgan Veronica Ellis! Make Juicy, Sexy Undulations! Now!!!