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Science
Study: Solar system could have more than 100 planets (including Pluto)
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Study: Solar system could have more than 100 planets (including Pluto)

Study: Solar system could have more than 100 planets (including Pluto)
Photo Credit: News | WFXT
This high-resolution image captured by NASA's New Horizons spacecraft shows the bright expanse of the western lobe of Pluto’s "heart," or Sputnik Planitia, which is rich in nitrogen, carbon monoxide and methane ices.

Study: Solar system could have more than 100 planets (including Pluto)

Remember when Pluto was demoted to a dwarf planet in 2006? Well, a group of scientists is making a case for its comeback as the proper planet many of us grew up knowing.

>> Read more trending stories

Johns Hopkins University scientist Kirby Runyon and his colleagues have proposed new criteria for classifying a planet that would not only label Pluto a planet again, but would label 100 other objects in the solar system as planets, too.

According to Tech Times, the current definition of a planet — last changed by the International Astronomical Union (IAU) in 2006 — requires that a celestial body is in orbit around the Sun, has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome “rigid body forces” so that it retains a nearly round shape and has cleared the neighborhood around its orbit.

>> RELATED: Will Pluto regain its planetary swagger? Scientists are pushing for it 

Pluto was demoted because it doesn’t meet IAU’s requirement of a clear area throughout its orbit.

But according to Runyon and his colleagues, no planet has actually completely cleared its orbit. Even Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Neptune share their orbits with asteroids, according to Science Daily.

Instead, the scientists argued, the definition of a planet should focus on the body itself and not things like location.

>> RELATED: Scientists discover 60 new planets, including one ‘super Earth’ 

Under their new proposed criteria, a planet is “a sub-stellar mass body that has never undergone nuclear fusion” with enough gravitational heft to maintain a roughly round shape, Science Daily reported.

Based on this definition, there could be nearly 110 planets in the solar system, including both Jupiter’s and Earth’s moons.

According to Science Daily, the new definition doesn’t require approval from a central governing body and has already been adapted by scientists at the University of Hawaii.

Read more about the study at ScienceDaily.com.

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Latest Bulldog News

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  • 960 The Ref’s Sam Franco got the chance to tour the new Mercedes Benz Stadium, home of the Atlanta Falcons and the Atlanta United
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  • STATESBORO, Ga. --- Two freshmen scored Georgia’s three goals in a shutout win over Georgia Southern on Saturday evening. The Bulldogs defeated the Eagles, 3-0, in the final exhibition game of preseason action.    “Every player made a contribution today and that‘s what building a team is all about, every player playing their role,” Georgia head coach Billy Lesesne said. “It was needed today. That’s what you want out of an exhibition, for a team to challenge you a little bit and then to try to find solutions. I thought we were solution oriented. The team played well and it was a good result for us.”   After a scoreless first half, freshman Delaney Erwin headed the ball into the net off a cross from sophomore Daria Stan to put the Bulldogs on the board in the 53rd minute of action.    With six minutes remaining in the game, freshman Reagan Glisson extended Georgia’s lead with a shot from outside the box.   Glisson scored again in the final minute of play to seal the victory over the Eagles.    Jessie Harvey, Louise Hogrell, and Liz Brucia all saw time in the goal, each making one save to complete the shutout for the Bulldogs.    The season officially kicks off at the Turner Soccer Complex against Wake Forest on Friday, Aug. 18 at 7 p.m. The Bulldogs cap off opening weekend in Athens against High Point on Sunday, Aug. 20 at 2 p.m. Admission is free.