Trans-Neptunian Object (TNO)

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200 TRansneptunian Objects (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics)
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Trans-Neptunian Object (TNO) is any minor planet in the Solar System that orbits the Sun at a greater average distance (semi-major axis) than Neptune, 30 astronomical units (AU). Twelve minor planets with a semi-major axis greater than 150 AU and perihelion greater than 30 AU are known, which are called extreme trans-Neptunian objects (ETNOs).

The first trans-Neptunian object to be discovered was Pluto in 1930. It took until 1992 to discover a second trans-Neptunian object orbiting the Sun directly, 15760 Albion. As of February 2017 over 2,300 trans-Neptunian objects appear on the Minor Planet Center’s List of Transneptunian Objects. Of these TNOs, 2,000 have a perihelion farther out than Neptune (30.1 AU).

The most massive known trans-Neptunian object is Eris, followed by Pluto, 2007 OR10, Makemake and Haumea. The Kuiper belt, scattered disk, and Oort cloud are three conventional divisions of this volume of space, though treatments vary and a few objects such as Sedna do not fit easily into any division. — Wikipedia

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Phys.org - latest science and technology news stories Phys.org internet news portal provides the latest news on science including: Physics, Nanotechnology, Life Sciences, Space Science, Earth Science, Environment, Health and Medicine.

  • Study describes discovery of close binary...
    on September 28, 2020 at 7:59 pm

    A new study authored by Southwest Research Institute scientists Rodrigo Leiva and Marc Buie reveals the binary nature of a trans-Neptunian object (TNO). Leiva and Buie utilized data obtained by the Research and Education Collaborative Occultation Network (RECON), a citizen science research net-work dedicated to observing the outer solar system. The study was published this month in The Astrophysical Journal.

  • Rock types on Ryugu provide clues to the...
    on September 21, 2020 at 3:00 pm

    The asteroid Ryugu may look like a solid piece of rock, but it's more accurate to liken it to an orbiting pile of rubble. Given the relative fragility of this collection of loosely bound boulders, researchers believe that Ryugu and similar asteroids probably don't last very long due to disruptions and collisions from other asteroids. Ryugu is estimated to have adopted its current form around 10 million to 20 million years ago, which sounds like a lot compared to a human lifespan, but makes it a […]

  • Could Planet 9 be a primordial black hole?
    on August 24, 2020 at 1:40 pm

    For several years, astronomers and cosmologists have theorized about the existence of an additional planet with a mass 10 times greater than that of Earth, situated in the outermost regions of the solar system. This hypothetical planet, dubbed Planet 9, could be the source of gravitational effects that would explain the unusual patterns in the orbits of trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs) highlighted by existing cosmological data. TNOs are celestial bodies that orbit the sun and are located beyond […]

  • The sun may have started its life with a binary...
    on August 18, 2020 at 1:44 pm

    A new theory published today in the Astrophysical Journal Letters by scientists from Harvard University suggests that the sun may once have had a binary companion of similar mass. If confirmed, the presence of an early stellar companion increases the likelihood that the Oort cloud was formed as observed and that Planet Nine was captured rather than formed within the solar system.

  • Researchers find new minor planets beyond Neptune
    on March 11, 2020 at 9:03 pm

    Using data from the Dark Energy Survey (DES), researchers have found more than 300 trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs), minor planets located in the far reaches of the solar system, including more than 100 new discoveries. Published in The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series, the study also describes a new approach for finding similar types of objects and could aid future searches for the hypothetical Planet Nine and other undiscovered planets. The work was led by graduate student Pedro […]

  • Planet Nine could be a primordial black hole, new...
    on September 30, 2019 at 1:00 pm

    The hypothetical Planet Nine, assumed to be lurking somewhere in the outskirts of our solar system, may not be a planet at all. A new study, published September 24 on the arXiv pre-print server, suggests that the mysterious and still undiscovered object might be a primordial black hole.

  • Research team studies binaries to make heads or...
    on June 25, 2019 at 2:28 pm

    A Southwest Research Institute-led team studied the orientation of distant solar system bodies to bolster the "streaming instability" theory of planet formation.

  • Study shows how icy outer solar system satellites...
    on June 25, 2019 at 12:37 pm

    Using sophisticated computer simulations and observations, a team led by researchers from the Earth-Life Science Institute (ELSI) at Tokyo Institute of Technology has shown how the so-called trans-Neptunian objects (or TNOs) may have formed. TNOs, which include the dwarf planet Pluto, are a group of icy and rocky small bodies—smaller than planets, but larger than comets—that orbit the solar system beyond the planet Neptune. TNOs likely formed at the same time as the solar system, and […]

  • Neptune's moon Triton fosters rare icy union
    on May 22, 2019 at 6:00 pm

    Astronomers using the Gemini Observatory explore Neptune's largest moon Triton and observe, for the first time beyond the lab, an extraordinary union between carbon monoxide and nitrogen ices. The discovery offers insights into how this volatile mixture can transport material across the moon's surface via geysers, trigger seasonal atmospheric changes, and provide a context for conditions on other distant, icy worlds.

  • Rosetta's comet sculpted by stress
    on February 19, 2019 at 11:08 am

    Feeling stressed? You're not alone. ESA's Rosetta mission has revealed that geological stress arising from the shape of Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko has been a key process in sculpting the comet's surface and interior following its formation.


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    M.P.E.C. 2019-L53 Issued 2019 June 5, 11:31 UT The Minor Planet Electronic Circulars contain information on unusual minor planets and routine data on comets. They are published on behalf of Division F of the International Astronomical Union by the Minor Planet Center, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A. Prepared using the Tamkin Foundation Computer Network […]

  • 2015 RS281
    by A. U. Tomatic on May 31, 2019 at 2:34 am

    M.P.E.C. 2019-K87 Issued 2019 May 31, 02:33 UT The Minor Planet Electronic Circulars contain information on unusual minor planets and routine data on comets. They are published on behalf of Division F of the International Astronomical Union by the Minor Planet Center, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A. Prepared using the Tamkin Foundation Computer Network […]

  • 2015 RR281
    by A. U. Tomatic on May 31, 2019 at 2:29 am

    M.P.E.C. 2019-K86 Issued 2019 May 31, 02:28 UT The Minor Planet Electronic Circulars contain information on unusual minor planets and routine data on comets. They are published on behalf of Division F of the International Astronomical Union by the Minor Planet Center, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A. Prepared using the Tamkin Foundation Computer Network […]

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    by A. U. Tomatic on May 31, 2019 at 2:24 am

    M.P.E.C. 2019-K85 Issued 2019 May 31, 02:23 UT The Minor Planet Electronic Circulars contain information on unusual minor planets and routine data on comets. They are published on behalf of Division F of the International Astronomical Union by the Minor Planet Center, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A. Prepared using the Tamkin Foundation Computer Network […]

  • 37 NEW DISTANT OBJECTS
    by Gareth V. Williams on May 11, 2019 at 1:30 am

    M.P.E.C. 2019-J91 Issued 2019 May 11, 01:26 UT The Minor Planet Electronic Circulars contain information on unusual minor planets and routine data on comets. They are published on behalf of Division F of the International Astronomical Union by the Minor Planet Center, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A. Prepared using the Tamkin Foundation Computer Network […]

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    M.P.E.C. 2019-J90 Issued 2019 May 11, 01:21 UT The Minor Planet Electronic Circulars contain information on unusual minor planets and routine data on comets. They are published on behalf of Division F of the International Astronomical Union by the Minor Planet Center, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A. Prepared using the Tamkin Foundation Computer Network […]

  • SEVEN NEW DISTANT OBJECTS
    by Gareth V. Williams on May 5, 2019 at 4:11 am

    M.P.E.C. 2019-J52 Issued 2019 May 5, 04:09 UT The Minor Planet Electronic Circulars contain information on unusual minor planets and routine data on comets. They are published on behalf of Division F of the International Astronomical Union by the Minor Planet Center, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A. Prepared using the Tamkin Foundation Computer Network […]

  • ELEVEN NEW DISTANT OBJECTS
    by Gareth V. Williams on April 30, 2019 at 4:50 pm

    M.P.E.C. 2019-H116 Issued 2019 Apr. 30, 16:48 UT The Minor Planet Electronic Circulars contain information on unusual minor planets and routine data on comets. They are published on behalf of Division F of the International Astronomical Union by the Minor Planet Center, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A. Prepared using the Tamkin Foundation Computer Network […]

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    by Gareth V. Williams on April 30, 2019 at 2:52 pm

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  • 2016 TY94
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