Huge 280-mile-wide asteroid is so big it could be classed as a dwarf planet

Huge 280-mile-wide asteroid is so big it could be classed as a dwarf planet

A big rock believed to be fourth biggest asteroid in our solar system can be classified as one dwarf planet, said the astronomers.

If the asteroid happens to be reclassified, it may make Hygiea, situated in asteroid belt in the middle of Jupiter and Mars, the tiniest dwarf planet of our solar system.

The astronomers say this huge 280-mile-wide celestial body could possibly replace Ceres, which measures 590 miles in diameter and is also situated in rocky belt.

This finding comes in after one international astronomer team observed Hygiea with the help of VLT (Very Large Telescope) of the European Southern Observatory.

As per the IAU (International Astronomical Union), a dwarf planet is one celestial body which orbits around a star and is huge enough to get rounded by its gravity. However, it doesn’t hold the gravitational power to empty the region near its orbit by slinging away or consuming small objects present in its way.

The most popular example here includes Pluto that was reclassified as one dwarf planet back in 2006 post the IAU rearranged the basic requirements which defined one planet.

Besides Pluto and Ceres, the solar system comprises of 3 other dwarf planets, Eris, Makemake as well as Haumea.

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Lisa Durant

With a Science degree from a reputed college, Lisa has been one of the oldest contributors for Scoop Hawk in the Science niche. She has been through the ups and downs of journalism and understands the sheer meaning of optimum quality.

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