Pluto, a dwarf planet at the edge of the solar system, constantly surprises us with its mysteries and riddles. Astronomers recently discovered that none of the five satellites found around Pluto actually orbit the dwarf planet.
This discovery was made thanks to a new study conducted by astronomers from the University of Bern in Switzerland. They used data from NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft, which flew past Pluto in 2015.
As it turned out, all five of Pluto’s satellites — Kerber, Styx, Nicta, Hydra and Charon — are in resonance with each other. This means that their orbits are connected to each other and move in tune with each other. Because of this, they cannot orbit Pluto.
Instead, the satellites form a complex system that resembles a dance. Each satellite moves around its axis and around the other satellites, while maintaining its inherent resonance. This system is called a “resonance chain dance.
This discovery may help scientists better understand how the satellites of dwarf planets and other objects in space are formed. In addition, it may help scientists understand what processes are going on inside Pluto and its satellites.
So far, scientists cannot say exactly how this system of satellites was formed. However, they speculate that it was the result of a collision between Pluto and another object in space.
The study of Pluto and its satellites continues, and scientists hope to make new discoveries in the near future.