'Planet Nine' may actually be a black hole

Planet nine 9 orbit

Planet Nine may have gotten too close to Jupiter or Saturn, they suggested, and been flung out to the edges of the solar system, where it now follows an eccentric orbit and influences the Kuiper Belt objects. While the hunt for this theorized celestial object continues, researchers from the U.S. and United Kingdom have suggested that it could instead be a small black hole.

If Planet X exists, it is theorized to be about the size of Neptune and ten times Earth's mass, with an orbit that takes 10,000-20,000 Earth years to complete according to NASA. "Once you start thinking about more exotic objects, like primordial black holes, you think in different ways".

'We advocate that, rather than just looking for it in visible light, maybe look for it in gamma rays.

"If conventional searches fail to find Planet Nine and the evidence for TNO anomalies continues to grow, the primordial black hole Planet Nine hypothesis will become a compelling explanation", the authors reflect.

Conspiracy nuts have claimed for years that a rogue planet called Nibiru may one day smash into Earth, destroying all life as we know it.

Planet 9 is thought to have a mass of something between five and 15 times that of Earth.

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There's plenty of theories, including a planet - the elusive Planet Nine - or even a collection of smaller worlds or large asteroids that have grouped up. The astronomers suggest seeking for flashes of gamma rays created by interactions of dark matter particles in the accretion disk surrounding the purported black hole to prove or disprove the theory. The gravity of a distant planet might cause its orbit.

On average, the mysterious body orbits the sun at a distance 20 times farther than Neptune - about 18.6 billion miles. But the researchers suggest that a planet-mass black hole would have a halo of dark matter around it, which could stretch up to 1 billion kilometers from its center.

Artist's illustration of Planet Nine, a hypothetical world that some scientists think lurks undiscovered in the far outer solar system. This scenario could be confirmed through annihilation signals from the dark matter microhalo around the PBH,' Scholtz and Unwin write.

The ninth planet may not be the primary black hole. The gravitational fields of these small objects, which could be primordial black holes or free-ranging planets, bend light from background stellar sources, producing a lensing signature that OGLE can detect.

For the new study, researchers looked at data on the six Kuiper Belt objects' freaky orbits and also incorporated recent observations about how light traveling through the solar system appears to be bending due to an object (or objects) that scientist haven't accounted for.

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