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banquo's_bumble_puppy
2010-Apr-21, 11:27 AM
Could Pluto and Neptune ever collide? Do their orbits come close enough?

Nick Theodorakis
2010-Apr-21, 12:21 PM
No. (http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/ask_astro/answers/970326c.html)

Nick

grant hutchison
2010-Apr-21, 12:21 PM
Could Pluto and Neptune ever collide? Do their orbits come close enough?Their orbits don't come close at all, and they're in a resonant relationship which means that they're never at the same distance from the Sun at the same time.

Grant Hutchison

NEOWatcher
2010-Apr-21, 12:33 PM
No. (http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/ask_astro/answers/970326c.html)


It will cross Neptune's orbit again on Feb. 11, 1999 to resume its place as the ninth planet from the Sun for the next 228 years.
Technically; that statement only stood for 7 1/2 years. :whistle:

neilzero
2010-Apr-21, 12:54 PM
The harmonic relation is quite stable, but ever could be billions of years, so there is a very slight probability that a close encounter with a massive object from outside our solar, could result in a collision a few years or centuries latter. Neil

Jeff Root
2010-Apr-21, 01:50 PM
Their orbits don't come close at all, and they're in a resonant relationship which
means that they're never at the same distance from the Sun at the same time.
They might not be anywhere near each other when they are the same distance
from the Sun, but they have to be the same distance from the Sun at least
twice in every Pluto orbit. Did you leave out a conditional?

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis

grant hutchison
2010-Apr-21, 02:27 PM
Did you leave out a conditional?I did.

Grant Hutchison

George
2010-Apr-21, 02:32 PM
Even if New Horizons becomes an unexpected impact mission (;)) it will not alter the orbit to allow the creation of Nepto or Plutune. :)

Buttercup
2010-Apr-21, 05:55 PM
Pluto's so small...Neptune is a gas giant. Wouldn't Neptune just swallow Pluto up if they ever did collide? Would Pluto begin to break apart from Neptune's gravity prior to, and then {slurp!} Pluto & Co would be devoured?

Jeff Root
2010-Apr-21, 07:56 PM
I think that Pluto would only start to break into separate pieces a few minutes
before it began to collide with Neptune. It would be a heckuva lot bigger splash
than Shoemaker-Levi 9.

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis

Romanus
2010-Apr-21, 11:15 PM
Though I've never plugged the numbers myself, I've read that Pluto actually gets closer to Uranus than it ever does to Neptune.

A Pluto impact would be pretty spectacular, perhaps the most energetic impact in the Solar System in billions of years; wouldn't be surprised if it made Neptune temporarily bright enough to cast shadows back here. The planet would probably be unrecognizable for a very long time as the interior slowly cooled and settled.

Jens
2010-Apr-22, 02:54 AM
The harmonic relation is quite stable, but ever could be billions of years, so there is a very slight probability that a close encounter with a massive object from outside our solar, could result in a collision a few years or centuries latter. Neil

Yes, for this reason, I think a better answer would be, they won't, but it isn't true to say that could never collide. Never is a very long time.

agingjb
2010-Apr-22, 07:00 AM
I'd guess that Triton will hit Neptune, or break up, before there is even a remote chance of a disturbance causing Pluto's orbit to make a substantial change. And before that there will be an interaction - maybe a collision - between Triton and Proteus.

MarCn
2010-Apr-22, 07:03 AM
Yes, for this reason, I think a better answer would be, they won't, but it isn't true to say that could never collide. Never is a very long time.

Not long ago a watched a program about space on discovery channel and their as I remenber whas something mentioned that Pluto and Neptune may collide someday, ofcourse not tomorrow not next year but in the future they may. Well maybe i remember it not exactly but i think it was something about this :think: maybe this question may not be to the topic but may someone aswner me nice and clearly why Pluto is not counted as a planet? :shifty:

PetersCreek
2010-Apr-22, 03:43 PM
Welcome to the BAUT forums, MarCn. Your question is indeed off-topic for this thread. It would be best and more appropriate to post your question in the Space/Astronomy Question and Answers (http://www.bautforum.com/forumdisplay.php/8-Space-Astronomy-Questions-and-Answers) forum. You might also wish to use the search function since there's been a fair bit of discussion on that very topic.