Pluto May Yet Be Knocked Off The Planetary Roll Call

Wait a minute astronomy buffs! I reported just the other day about the proposed new planets in the solar system, but on Friday a competing definition of what makes a planet was put forth by a Uruguayan astronomer. Under this new proposal, a planet is an object that is “by far larger than the local population.” So Pluto is out, since it is so much smaller than the other planets and similar to the Kuiper Belt objects that are popping up in astronomer’s telescopes.

Seems some scientists are turned off by the possibility of hundreds of planets in our solar system some day, most of them being tiny snowballs at the extreme edge of the sun’s demesne. And Pluto is the prototypical snowball at the chilly edge of the solar system, with it’s cockeyed orbit and icy consistency.

And for what it’s worth, check out Stephen Colbert dogging the new planets with Neil deGrasse Tyson, director of the Hayden Planetarium.