Lost In Space – Tour of Our Solar System #4


The Dwarf Planets

The Dwarf Planets

Dwarf Planets

.

 Welcome back My Dear Readers to The Other Shoe. Today we resume our journey in our Ship of the Stars at the very edge of our solar system. We are here, out at the Kuiper Belt and the Oort Cloud and we turn our ship back towards the center of our solar system. Yet, before leaving My Dear Readers I want to spend some time here among the Kuiper Belt and the three ‘Dwarf Planets’ that make up the known parts of this distant sector of our solar system.

.

Here on one of the terrestrial planets of our solar system, we tend to forget about all the outer planets. The ‘Gas Giants’ Jovian planets; Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune hardly ever enter into our thinking or our lives. I know that I tend to add to that ‘frame of mind’. Every week I publish an article series ‘The Mars Report’… not the ‘Pluto’ report or the ‘Neptune’ report. People are really interested in Mars! They have been for, well, since the early twentieth century. One of the very first movies ever made, was about… MARS!

.

See? It even sidetracked our article right here, today! Today’s article is not about Mars, it is about Pluto, Ceres, Haumea, Eris and Makemake. All but one of these Dwarf Planets are located at the very edges of the Kuiper Belt, except that Eris has an orbit that brings it inside the orbit of Pluto. As well, these Dwarf Planetsand are some of the most different of all the planets of our solar system.

.

The Extreme Orbit of Tilted Eris

The Extreme Orbit of Tilted Eris

(The Extreme Orbit of Tilted Eris)

.

Not all of these Dwarf Planets exist in the outer reaches of our solar system, like the Kuiper Belt and the Oort Cloud. One of these Dwarf Planets exists in the inner ‘Asteroid Belt’! As you can see, in the image at the top of this article, the Dwarf Planet Ceres calls home in the inner reaches of our solar system in the Asteroid Belt that separates the inner ‘Terrestrial’ planets from the outer Jovain ‘Gas Giant(s)’.

.

At the other extreme of our solar system, past even the Kuiper Belt is Eris[1]. Just below this paragraph is an actual image of Eris taken by the Hubble Space Telescope. Eris is the largest of all the Dwarf Planets and the ninth largest body known to orbit the sun. Eris was just recently discovered, too! Eris was first discovered in January 2005 at the Palomar Observatory by Mike Brown[2]. Eris has just one moon named Dysmonia[3].

.

Image of Eris and Dysmonia taken by Hubble

Image of Eris and Dysmonia taken by Hubble

(Image of Eris and Dysmonia taken by Hubble)

.

Our next image is an artist conception of Eris up close with Dysmonia shown in the distance. Mankind still does not posses the scientific prowess to actually see Eris and Dysmonia. Yet, this artist conception gives us an good idea of what Eris might look like.

.

Eris and Dysmonia – Artist Conception

Eris and Dysmonia – Artist Conception

(Eris and Dysmonia – Artist Conception)

.

Now we guide our Ship of the Starsthrough the Kuiper Belt heading back towards the sun and into orbit around our next subject, Makemake. Makemake[4] is the most likely candidate for the largest celestial body in the Kuiper Belt. The Dwarf Planet Makemake was discovered just after Eris on March 31st, 2005 by (again) Mike Brown and his team at Palomar Observatory. The image, below, shows Makemake as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope.

.

Makemake as Seen by Hubble

Makemake as Seen by Hubble

(Makemake as Seen by Hubble)

.

Pointing out Ship of the Stars out of the orbit of Makemake, we pull even further away from the Kuiper Belt an into the orbit of the most… extraordinary Dwarf Planet of them all… Haumea! Haumea is, well, kind of an odd planet. Even for being one of the Dwarf PlanetsHaumea is unique! Haumea[5] is unique in that it is an elongated planet! Now, that might be kind of difficult to imagine, so I have fond and present here for you, My Dear Readers, an artist conception of Haumea! Shown with its two moons; Hi’iaka[6] and Namaka[7].

.

Haumea with its Two Moons

Haumea with its Two Moons

(Haumea with its Two Moons)

.

We now guide our Ship of the Stars to the most familiar of all of the Dwarf Planets… PLUTO! Again, and I hate to belabor a point, when I was a boy we were taught that Pluto was a planet! Every science class I went into there was a huge chart of the NINE planets, with Pluto at the very edge. Funny that, when I was a boy there were nine planets and 48 states. Now, there are 50 states and Eight planets. L Well, Pluto may well be a Dwarf Planet, but I am going to give it the royal treatment in this article. Our first image of Pluto (below) was taken by the Hubble Space Telescope and shows Pluto and its three of its five moons.

.

Pluto and Three of its Five Moons by Hubble

Pluto and Three of its Five Moons by Hubble

(Pluto and Three of its Five Moons by Hubble)

.

First I want to share with you, My Dear Readers, the names of Pluto’s five moons (as well there is a footnote with a link to a page on each moon, for more information), First is the largest of Pluto’s moons, Charon[8]. The next four are; Nix[9], Hydra[10], Kerberos[11] and Styx[12]. Amazing, to me, Pluto is not a ‘planet’… like Earth… but it has more moons… than Earth! Moving on, Pluto is the largest object in the Kuiper Belt and the tenth largest object in orbit around our sun. Amazingly (at least to me) Pluto[13] was discovered in 1840’s by using Newtonian mechanics[14] by (French Mathmetician) Urbain Le Verrier[15].

.

Pluto Animation of Surface Mapping

Pluto Animation of Surface Mapping

(Pluto Animation of Surface Mapping)

.

Pluto is the name of the ‘God of the Underworld’ and its moons all were given names that were associated with this Greek God. Lowell Observatory earned the right to name Pluto and its five moons. They held (really) a contest to name Pluto and all of the five moons. I am entertained by the choices made, at the time. Our next image was taken by the European Space Agency’s Faint Object Camera and are the clearest images ever obtained.

.

First ESA Faint Object Camera Science Images Pluto the Double Planet

First ESA Faint Object Camera Science Images Pluto the Double Planet

(First ESA Faint Object Camera Science Images Pluto the Double Planet)

.

In recent years NASA/JPL have spent a substantial amount of time, and effort, mapping the surface of Pluto using the Hubble Space Telescope. Our next two images are the result of these efforts. These images look… kind of… blocky or pixilated. However, if mankind was trying to take a picture of me… from three BILLION miles away? My picture would be pretty darn pixilated, too! I am just amazed how we are able to map at all from that distance. The rotating image, above, is a color enhanced composite of the two images below. I am just very happy to have all these fine images to share, with you My Dear Readers, for this article.

.

Pluto’s Surface from 3 Billion Miles

Pluto’s Surface from 3 Billion Miles

(Pluto’s Surface from 3 Billion Miles)

.

The next image, also taken by Hubble, shows the best mapping of Pluto… ever!

.

Surface Map of Pluto by Hubble and the F.O.C

Surface Map of Pluto by Hubble and the F.O.C

(Surface Map of Pluto by Hubble and the F.O.C.)

.

Well, My Dear Readers, that brings us ever closer to the end of this article and this edition of “Lost In Space – tour of Our Solar System #4’. Our last image is of all the known bodies of the Kuiper Belt, by size.

.

Kuiper Belt Objects by Size

Kuiper Belt Objects by Size

(Kuiper Belt Objects by Size)

.

My Dear Readers, that brings us to the end of this edition of ‘Lost In Space’ and the fourth part of our ‘Tour of the Solar System’ here at The Other Shoe. I really hope that everyone has enjoyed this edition. If you have? Please remember to ‘Like’ and ‘Share’ this article; on Facebook, via Tumblr, by Pintrest, and any and all of the ‘Social Media’ that you happen to enjoy. I just love seeing my articles shared and ‘Liked’! It makes me feel like my efforts are appreciated and that you, My Dear Readers, value my work.

.

Adieu!

.

Thank YOU!

.

The Other Shoe eBay Store

PLEASE Visit The Other Shoe eBay Store!

.

http://www.ebay.com/usr/enzomatrixlt

.

Danny Hanning of The Other Shoe - May 6th, 2014

Danny Hanning of The Other Shoe – May 6th, 2014


Advertisements

About Daniel Hanning
I am a; writer, editor and publisher. I write, most often, articles about our space program, fun videos andpolitical works. My most recent additions are; A Week In Review, Sunday Funnies and The Adventures of Nadia. Along with The Mars Report and Lost in Space. ENJOY!

3 Responses to Lost In Space – Tour of Our Solar System #4

  1. Pingback: FIVE HUNDRED ARTICLES a Reveiw & Celebration! #1 | The Other Shoe

  2. Pingback: FIVE HUNDRED ARTICLES a Reveiw & Celebration! #1 Redux | The Other Shoe

  3. Pingback: Lost in Space – New Horizons Reaches Pluto | The Other Shoe

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

The Other Shoe

Home to; 'The Mars Report', 'Lost in Space', 'News from Around the World', 'A Week in Review', 'Election 2016', and 'Sunday Funnies'

Otrazhenie

Reflection

Allen's World

Personal Blog of Allen Hanning

J T Weaver

And in the end the love you take, is equal to the love you make. -- The Beatles

Invisible Mikey

philosophic topics and the arts

tigerboose

a videolog about tigers

Hiking Photography

Beautiful photos of hiking and other outdoor adventures.

Movie Dr

Independent movie reviews and more...

palisadespete

10 Facts to Get You Started

The Other Shoe

Home to; 'Lost in Space', 'The Mars Report', 'News From Around the World', 'A Week In Review', and 'Sunday Funnies'

Ruijssantos's Blog

Na na na na naaaaa

%d bloggers like this: