Pluto’s demotion


The latest collision of a meteor and near collision of an asteroid shows that the Earth hasn’t cleared the neighborhood around its orbit, which was the main criteria for demoting Pluto from full planet status.

Many astronomers don’t share the rational for the International Astronomical Union demoting Pluto to dwarf planet status. Dr Alan Stern, who leads NASA’s New Horizons mission to Pluto, called the action sloppy science.

The discovery of Eris, a small planet on the edge of the solar system that’s more than twice the distance from the sun as Pluto, was at first thought to be larger than Pluto.

Its discovery started the drive to redefine a planet and demote Pluto as a planet. Since 2010, it has been found to be the same size or smaller than Pluto.

The IAU needs to correct this mistake and restore Pluto to full planet status.

Van K. Golay, Fort Lauderdale

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