Chip in to help search ‘Planet Nine’
Planet Nine (Planet X?) has been increasingly garnering a lot of attention ever since the first study emerged last year that claimed to have theoretical evidence of a planet lurking beyond the edges of our Solar System.
The hunt for Planet Nine has gained momentum with scientists launching a project to find the planet through crowdsourcing. Planet Nine is said to be 10 times the mass of Earth and four times the size of our Earth making it a super Earth.
Amateur astronomers who are interested to chip in can use a website to analyse thousands of images taken by the Australian National University (ANU) SkyMapper telescope at Siding Spring. The telescope will be taking 36 images of each part of the southern sky, which is relatively unexplored, and identify changes occurring within the Universe.
People who signup will be required to scan through the thousands of SkyMapper images online to look for differences that could hint at Planet Nine and possibly other mystery objects in space, including asteroids, comets and dwarf planets like Pluto. Experts behind the project claim that looking for the Planet Nine and other objects in the sky isn’t that hard. All you will have to do is spot the difference in the images, mark it and describe what’s different and scientists behind the project will take are of the rest.
Volunteers will also get a chance to name the asteroid or object found although not after themselves.
Scientists are optimistic that they will be able to find the new planet lurking beyond the edges of our Solar System that no human has ever seen in our two-million-year history. While computing powers have increased, it is no match for the passion of millions of people striving for a single goal and that’s what experts behind the project intend to harness to find Planet 9 and other things that move in space.