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The distance from earth of a mysterious object in space was reported incorrectly in some editions yesterday. The correct figure is 50 billion miles.
By Thomas O'Toole December 30, 1983
A heavenly body possibly as large as the giant planet Jupiter and possibly so close to Earth that it would be part of this solar system has been found in the direction of the constellation Orion by an orbiting telescope aboard the U.S. infrared astronomical satellite.
So mysterious is the object that astronomers do not know if it is a planet, a giant comet, a nearby "protostar" that never got hot enough to become a star, a distant galaxy so young that it is still in the process of forming its first stars or a galaxy so shrouded in dust that none of the light cast by its stars ever gets through.
"All I can tell you is that we don't know what it is," Dr. Gerry Neugebauer, IRAS chief scientist for California's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and director of the Palomar Observatory for the California Institute of Technology, said in an interview.
The most fascinating explanation of this mystery body, which is so cold it casts no light and has never been seen by optical telescopes on Earth or in space, is that it is a giant gaseous planet as large as Jupiter and as close to Earth as 50 trillion miles.(Correct Figure is 50 Billion miles) While that may seem like a great distance in earthbound terms, it is a stone's throw in cosmological terms, so close in fact that it would be the nearest heavenly body to Earth beyond the outermost planet Pluto.
At aphelion, Planet Nine would be in the general location of the Orion and Taurus constellations, while perihelion would place the planet in near Serpens, Ophiuchus, and Libra.
Whatever it is, Houck said, the mystery body is so cold its temperature is no more than 40 degrees above "absolute" zero, which is 456 degrees Fahrenheit below zero. The telescope aboard IRAS is cooled so low and is so sensitive it can "see" objects in the heavens that are only 20 degrees above absolute zero.
"All I can tell you is that we don't know what it is,"
The most fascinating explanation of this mystery body, which is so cold it casts no light and has never been seen by optical telescopes on Earth or in space, is that it is a giant gaseous planet as large as Jupiter
Whatever it is, Houck said, the mystery body is so cold its temperature is no more than 40 degrees above "absolute" zero, which is 456 degrees Fahrenheit below zero.
The most fascinating explanation of this mystery body, which is so cold it casts no light and has never been seen by optical telescopes on Earth or in space
But After looking at the articles he linked it seems those other research papers from 1987 were referring to other objects.
Data have been presented on nine point sources found the the course of the IRAS minisurvey with no obvious identified optical counterparts brighter than 18.5 mag. A number of candidate identifications have been considered including near-solar system, galactic, and extragalactic objects. Further observations at infrared and other wavelengths may provide additional information in support of one of these conjectures, or perhaps these objects will require entirely different interpretations.
False. The 1983 paper provided no distance information for any of the objects, because they had no way of determining that from the IRAS data. At the time, distance was purely speculative.
this massive object was seen at around the same distance from us and direction that planetary scientists today say that planet 9, or whatever it is is located.
Neugebauer became co-chairman of the science team of the first orbiting infrared observatory, the Infrared Astronomy Satellite (IRAS). This spacecraft operated for ten months in 1983 and detected about 350,000 objects, including ultraluminous infrared galaxies and debris disks orbiting nearby stars.
You seem to be assuming that "Planet 9" is at aphelion. Why? Those who postulate its existence don't seem to know where it is, exactly.
So it is a complete coincidence that planet 9 general direction is towards Orion and Taurus constellations meanwhile the object referred in the WaPost was towards the Orion constellation.
Yeah, well. The actual paper says "beyond 30 AU." That's not very specific, is it?
Not to mention the distance mentioned in the WaPost of this object being 50 billion miles away from us.
Ok. How many did WISE discover? Infrared telescope, right? Better instrument, right? Why wouldn't it find "Planet 9" if IRAS did? Oh, right. I forgot. Nibiru plays peek-a-boo. IRAS saw it, but WISE didn't.
BTW, just so you know, the Infrared Astronomy Satellite (IRAS). detected 350,000 objects in 1983 in 10 months.
Because those are the nine objects that Neuberger could not identify from optical surveys, as specified in the paper he wrote. The paper he was talking about in the Washington Post article.
I wonder how you came to the conclusion that this object was one of the nine you posted.
That's a pretty vague chunk of sky. There are lots of things in that general direction. But again, what makes you think that "Planet 9" is/was at aphelion?
Not to mention the "coincidence" that this object's direction is in the general direction of planet 9,
originally posted by: onehuman
It really boggles my mind to think there is something that massive and that cold just sitting out there and to to also think there are are also plenty more of the same.
originally posted by: Phage
If any of the infrared sources detected by IRAS were planetary and part of the Solar System, do you have a theory for why they were not detected as such by WISE? It seems that WISE was a more sensitive instrument than IRAS.
Rather than rely on the accuracy of a newspaper article (and you can find out how accurate those are elsewhere on this site) I did something that never occurred to the doomsayers: I sent an email to the two astronomers asking what happened back in '83. Gerry Neugebauer replied, and told me the real poop.
IRAS was designed to look in the far-infrared, well past what our eyes see. At the time, no one was really sure what it would find. To everyone's surprise, several bright point sources were found that did not correspond to anything seen on optical images taken of the same areas. In the press conference, the two scientists said that these objects could be almost anything, from a tenth planet in our solar system to distant galaxies.
Guess which it turned out to be? Sure enough, much deeper images were taken, and some of the objects were found to be dense gas clouds in our own Galaxy, while others turned out to be very distant galaxies. In fact, these observations heralded the discovery of a new type of object: Ultra-luminous Infrared Galaxies (ULIRGs). These are galaxies in which there is a burst of stars being born. The cocoons of dust in which the stars are enshrouded generates copious infrared, which is what was detected by IRAS. They published these results in the prestigious Astrophysical Journal, and you can even read it yourself.
So IRAS did not see Nibiru, Planet X, or anything of the sort, despite the claims of the doomcriers.