View Poll Results: For the confused, Titan is the ninth largest object orbiting the Sun

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  • Pluto

    6 33.33%
  • Neptune

    0 0%
  • Planet Nine

    1 5.56%
  • Titan

    1 5.56%
  • What ninth planet?

    10 55.56%
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Thread: Poll: What is the ninth planet?

  1. #1
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    Poll: What is the ninth planet?

    Just thought I'd get your thoughts on the current state of things.
    "Occam" is the name of the alien race that will enslave us all eventually. And they've got razors for hands. I don't know if that's true but it seems like the simplest answer."

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    I'm confused by the inclusion of Neptune as a choice. Are there those who do not now regard Neptune as a planet?

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    Quote Originally Posted by geonuc View Post
    I'm confused by the inclusion of Neptune as a choice. Are there those who do not now regard Neptune as a planet?
    Presumably that's based on including Titan as a planet, because of its size. But planets are defined as orbiting the sun as their primary, and it doesn't. So, "what ninth planet"?
    I think you'd have a better argument based on Ceres, but then you'd have to add in lots of small bodies as well. Including Pluto.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  4. #4
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    Actually by saying Neptune is ninth I was thinking of including Ceres, which would then be the fifth planet. The others are trans-Neptunian so wouldn't be ninth planets.
    "Occam" is the name of the alien race that will enslave us all eventually. And they've got razors for hands. I don't know if that's true but it seems like the simplest answer."

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  5. #5
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    Your poll's question assumes that there is a ninth planet, but the question is also ambiguously worded. Ninth in order of discovery? Ninth in mass? Ninth in average distance from the Sun? Also, dwarf planets are planets right? So, IF dwarf planets are planets, and we are doing this in the order of increasing distance from the Sun, then YES, Neptune is the answer. If no to either condition in my if statement, then who knows?
    Forming opinions as we speak

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    I spent most of my life with Pluto being the "ninth planet". I'm having trouble letting that go. So, based on what I learned as a pipsqueak, Pluto is my answer.

    But, based on more correct (correcter?) scientific approaches, it could be...???

    Neptune? If we count dwarf planets including Ceres, then based on orbital distances Neptune would be the 9th planet. If not, it would be the 8th.

    Planet Nine? We don't know if it even exists, yet.

    Titan? Nope. It orbits Saturn, not the sun on its own. If Titan qualifies, wouldn't the 4 large Jovian moons count too?

    If we don't count dwarf planets, there isn't a ninth, unless "Planet Nine" is confirmed to exist... and then if it does, and dwarfs count, it wouldn't be nine, Pluto (and the other known dwarf planets) would be numbered ahead of it.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpatz View Post
    Neptune? If we count dwarf planets including Ceres, then based on orbital distances Neptune would be the 9th planet. If not, it would be the 8th.
    Ah, but it isn’t that easy. During part of its orbit, Pluto is closer to the sun than Neptune, so if we count dwarf planets and use orbital distance as the standard, Neptune and Pluto take turns as the ninth and tenth planets. Currently, Pluto is outside Neptune’s orbit, so we could say Neptune is the ninth planet for now, but not always.

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    The earth's moon should be a planet since the sun pulls it more strongly than the earth.

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    Quote Originally Posted by parallaxicality View Post
    Actually by saying Neptune is ninth I was thinking of including Ceres, which would then be the fifth planet. The others are trans-Neptunian so wouldn't be ninth planets.
    OK, but if you're numbering them from 1 - 9 outward (as is natural), if one were to choose Titan from your list as being the 9th, where does that leave Neptune and Uranus? Hence my confusion.

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    Titan is a moon. Moons are not planets. The end.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

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    The gas giants should count as very small stars. Then we'd live in a five star system with lots of planets.

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    That's my dream but it looks like that isn't true. The Juno mission was supposed to settle that, but hasn't yet.
    "Occam" is the name of the alien race that will enslave us all eventually. And they've got razors for hands. I don't know if that's true but it seems like the simplest answer."

    Stephen Colbert.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
    The gas giants should count as very small stars. Then we'd live in a five star system with lots of planets.
    That's nonsense. The gas giants are not stars. I challenge you to present a definition of "star" that applies to Jupiter or Saturn (unless we are just going to go pre-science and go with "luminous points in the sky"). But even ancients recognized the "wanderers" were different than the "fixed stars".

    I don't understand this obsession to redesignate Pluto as a planet. I particularly don't understand why the general public cares; most of them couldn't even name all the planets.

    It seems like a lot of the effort to redesignate it is centered around trying to come up with weird definitions of "planet" that somehow make Pluto a planet, but don't change the status of the KBOs or other minor bodies. What does it matter if Pluto is a minor planet? Does it mean their football team can't participate in the Solar System Cup or something?
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  14. #14
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    How about something that is mostly gas by volume is a star?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
    How about something that is mostly gas by volume is a star?
    Place obligatory politician joke here.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
    How about something that is mostly gas by volume is a star?
    So the Earth (considering the volume of the exosphere), outgassing comets, various types of gas clouds, including ones light years across and many other objects would be considered stars?

    I really don’t see the point. The gas giants in our system don’t even have the mass to fuse deuterium so don’t count as brown dwarfs. If Jupiter had at least 13 times its current mass I could see an argument for calling it a kind of star, but it doesn’t. Everything else but the sun - no not stars.

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    But what if it doesn't have a planetary core? If it formed in the same manner as a star, is it not a star?
    "Occam" is the name of the alien race that will enslave us all eventually. And they've got razors for hands. I don't know if that's true but it seems like the simplest answer."

    Stephen Colbert.

  18. #18
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    You missed option for Eris...

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    Quote Originally Posted by parallaxicality View Post
    But what if it doesn't have a planetary core? If it formed in the same manner as a star, is it not a star?
    If it supports fusion reactions. That's the usual acid test for a star.

    If it's not hot, it's all goes to pot.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    If it supports fusion reactions. That's the usual acid test for a star.
    White dwarfs and neutron stars don't support fusion reactions either.

    Quote Originally Posted by chornedsnorkack View Post
    You missed option for Eris...
    I don't see how that could work. I can see Eris being a planet, but not the ninth planet.

    Quote Originally Posted by geonuc View Post
    OK, but if you're numbering them from 1 - 9 outward (as is natural), if one were to choose Titan from your list as being the 9th, where does that leave Neptune and Uranus? Hence my confusion.
    If we're ordering the objects orbiting the Sun strictly by volume, then Titan would be ninth, Neptune fourth and Uranus third. If it's by mass than Ganymede is ninth, Uranus fourth and Neptune third.

    Quote Originally Posted by antoniseb View Post
    Your poll's question assumes that there is a ninth planet, but the question is also ambiguously worded. Ninth in order of discovery?
    It would be rather difficult to place planets in order of discovery. Do we include the Sun and the Moon? How about Earth? When was it discovered? You could say it was discovered when the heliocentric model was accepted, I suppose.
    Last edited by parallaxicality; 2020-Sep-24 at 02:02 PM.
    "Occam" is the name of the alien race that will enslave us all eventually. And they've got razors for hands. I don't know if that's true but it seems like the simplest answer."

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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by parallaxicality View Post
    White dwarfs and neutron stars don't support fusion reactions either.
    At some point in their life they did, however. Gas giants never did, and never will.

    Grant Hutchison

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    Quote Originally Posted by parallaxicality View Post
    White dwarfs and neutron stars don't support fusion reactions either.
    They are the result of fusing. But fusion plays no part in Jupiter's timeline, anywhen.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by parallaxicality View Post
    But what if it doesn't have a planetary core? If it formed in the same manner as a star, is it not a star?
    What do you mean by "formed in the same manner"? All the objects in the solar system formed by accretion of gas and dust in the gravitational collapse of a giant molecular cloud. Does that mean every object in the solar system is a star?
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by parallaxicality View Post
    White dwarfs and neutron stars don't support fusion reactions either.
    Not internally, but just a reminder, if they have a nearby companion star they support surface fuson and can result in novae (white dwarfs) or x-ray bursters (neutron stars).

    Well, a white dwarf can support internal fusion, but only once .

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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    What do you mean by "formed in the same manner"? All the objects in the solar system formed by accretion of gas and dust in the gravitational collapse of a giant molecular cloud. Does that mean every object in the solar system is a star?
    Stars coalesce from the top down, whereas planets accrete from the bottom up. If Jupiter is found not to have a planetary core (as the Juno probe was supposed to find out) then it likely formed from the top down, like a star. Plus there are plenty of exoplanets whose orbits are difficult to explain via bottom-up accretion.
    "Occam" is the name of the alien race that will enslave us all eventually. And they've got razors for hands. I don't know if that's true but it seems like the simplest answer."

    Stephen Colbert.

  26. #26
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    I was under the impression that Juno had nailed down the existence of a "diluted core", incorporating heavy elements amounting to 10 or 20 times the mass of the Earth.

    The formation of Jupiter's diluted core by a giant impact (Nature, 2019)

    Grant Hutchison

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    Quote Originally Posted by parallaxicality View Post
    Stars coalesce from the top down, whereas planets accrete from the bottom up.
    True for terrestrial planets only if you ignore the mixing consequent upon large impacts, such as the proposed moon forming event; and you would especially also have to disregard the overturning and segregation associated with core formation.

  28. #28
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    Everything larger than the earth is a star or failed star. Everything smaller is a dwarf planet. We live on the only planet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
    Everything larger than the earth is a star or failed star. Everything smaller is a dwarf planet. We live on the only planet.
    And it is carried around the universe on the back of a giant turtle.
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

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  30. #30
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    So what did we learn? It looks like most people (of those who responded) follow the IAU definition, and count eight planets, but a sizeable minority are sufficiently attached to the old classification of Pluto that they reject the IAU definition.

    That's pretty much what I expected, I have to say.

    Grant Hutchison

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