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By Jove! More Trans-Neptunian Objects Discovered

© WikipediaArtist's conception of planet-like object Sedna
Artist's conception of planet-like object Sedna - Sputnik International
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Several new trans-Neptunian objects beyond the orbit of Neptune have reportedly been discovered by US astronomers.

Artist’s impression of Pluto's surface, with Charon in the distance. - Sputnik International
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American astronomers have managed to discover an array of new trans-Neptunian objects. The planetoids are located beyond the orbit of Neptune, media reports said.

A total of eight such objects were tracked, including 2014 FZ71, 2015 FJ345, 2004 XR190, 2013 FQ28, 2015 KH162, 2015 GP50, 2014 FC69 and 2012 FH84.

"We have been conducting a survey for distant solar system objects beyond the Kuiper Belt edge with new wide-field cameras on the Subaru 8 meter and CTIO 4 meter telescopes," scientists said.

The 2015 KH162 proved to be the largest object: it has a diameter of 800 kilometers and the length of the semi-major axis of its orbit is 61.9 astronomical units.

© Scott S. Sheppard / Chadwick Trujillo / David J. TholenNew trans-Neptunian objects
New trans-Neptunian objects - Sputnik International
New trans-Neptunian objects

In layman's terms, this means that it is, on average, 61.9 times more distant from our Sun than the Earth.

Earlier this month, astronomers from the California Institute of Technology said that they had concluded that Planet Nine exists by running computer simulations with data based on the orbits of six extreme trans-Neptunian objects, including Sedna, 2012 VP113, 2004 VN112, 2007 TG422, 2013 RF98 and 2010 GB174.

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A trans-Neptunian object is known to be any minor planet in the Solar System that orbits the Sun at a greater average distance (semi-major axis) than Neptune, namely, 30 astronomical units (AU).

Minor planets with a semi-major axis greater than 150 AU and perihelion greater than 30 AU are called extreme trans-Neptunian objects.

The largest known trans-Neptunian object is Pluto, which was discovered in 1930 and which became the first such object to be found.

In 1992, the second trans-Neptunian object was detected, in what was followed by the discovery of more than 1,750 such objects.

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