'Impossible' new ring system discovered at the edge of the solar system, and scientists are baffled

Feb 10, 2023
2
2
10
Would this be possible if the calculations for mass are way off due to core composition being far more dense than a standard core?
 
  • Like
Reactions: RicHar
Feb 10, 2023
2
2
10
Would this be possible if the calculations for mass are way off due to core composition being far more dense than a standard core?
After a little sleuthing on solstation it looks like the current mass is calculated with a significant amount of ice thought to be in the composition. I would think since we don't have any actual measurements of its gravity other than the rings around it, we could theorize the roche limit isn't being exceeded here but it would require more research to verify.
 
  • Like
Reactions: RicHar
Feb 10, 2023
1
0
10
Would this be possible if the calculations for mass are way off due to core composition being far more dense than a standard core?

Mass calculations don't require knowing the density, just the orbital radius and the orbital period, though I don't know the methodology they use to obtain that information from such a distant object, or how long they've observed it to know the orbital period. That said, utilizing the Roche limit means they believe the object was a solid object that fell within the limit and was torn apart by tidal forces. Jupiter's ring system wasn't developed this way, it was formed by other smaller objects impacting it's moons. These rings could have formed from a debris cloud from two impacting asteroids, followed by Quaoar entering the cloud and sweeping up debris.
 
Feb 12, 2023
2
0
10
Okay, if we accept the science as stated, then I have to ponder one of three possibilities. 1. Could a newly formed moon of the dwarf planet have been struck by a comet or asteroid at the exact angle, or maybe two objects struck each other in the proximity of the dwarf planet, to have created this apparently consistent ring? Hm, seems for a moon to become a ring it would take a shower of strikes, slowly eroding the moon over time, at all points in the orbit, until the moon was just dust. 2. If both the planet and the ring are magnetized, would that expand the Roche limits? 3. Could there be some matter between the dwarf planet and the ring that we aren't seeing?
 
Dec 20, 2022
50
5
55
Is it possible that we've found this ring just in its transition phase, in between the collisions that created it and the accretions that should eliminate it?