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  • This is our solar system.

  • Well, it's a model of our solar system.

  • Sun at the center and the eight planets that orbit it.

  • Wait a second. What's this?

  • Pluto?

  • What are you doing here, Pluto?

  • What?

  • Well, don't look at me like that. What do you want me to do?

  • You're technically not a planet anymore; you're a dwarf planet.

  • But that doesn't mean you're not important.

  • Oh, Pluto, your discovery was very important.

  • And it led to us learning even more about our solar system.

  • Yeah, that's right.

  • Let me explain, but let's go back a bit.

  • It was the ancient Babylonians that first observed the planets in our solar system.

  • They noticed that while most stars stayed in the same position relative to each other, some of them would move around the sky.

  • They weren't stars at all; they were planets.

  • In fact, the word "planet" comes from the Greek word "wanderer" because they... wandered through the sky.

  • At first, we thought there were only five planets: Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn.

  • Then, in the 16th century, we realized that Earth was also a planet.

  • Yep! Mind blown.

  • It was Nicolaus Copernicus in 1543 that suggested the planets revolved around the sun.

  • It took a few years to catch on, but eventually, people accepted the idea.

  • About 200 or so years later, we discovered Uranus.

  • Hey! No jokes, please, Pluto.

  • Cheeky.

  • Like the other planets, you can see Uranus without a telescope.

  • Because it's quite dim and moves very slowly, no one really noticed it, until 1781, when astronomer and composer Frederick William Herschel came along and discovered it.

  • Then, in 1846, astronomers noticed something weird happening to Uranus's orbit.

  • Turns out, it was because of the gravitational pull of Planet Eight, Neptune.

  • And that brings us to Pluto.

  • In 1930, American astronomer Clyde Tombaugh was checking out images he'd taken of the stars and realized one of those specks of light kept moving.

  • Pluto's discovery made headlines.

  • Its name was actually suggested by an 11-year-old, who thought it would be cool to name it after the Roman god of the underworld, seeing as Pluto lives in such a cold and desolate part of the Solar System.

  • Then, we spent the next few decades remembering the names of all nine planets in our solar system, until...

  • Yep, Pluto, my friend, you were downgraded to a dwarf planet.

  • I mean, you are pretty small compared to the others.

  • Especially that one.

  • And that one.

  • And that one.

  • Well, all of them, really.

  • You're actually smaller than our moon.

  • And Australia.

  • Yeah, you're pretty tiny.

  • Plus, we've found a bunch of other objects in the Solar System that are much bigger than Pluto, but not quite big enough to be planets.

  • In 2016, we sent this spacecraft to study Pluto, found out it had a bunch of moons, and, best of all, had a big old love heart on its surface.

  • Awww!

  • So, to some of us, you'll always have a special place in our Solar System.

  • Just, uh, not this model because, you know, accuracy.

  • Yeah.

This is our solar system.

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Pluto Anniversary - Behind the News

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    たらこ posted on 2022/05/06
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