What is Kuiper belt?

  • (noun): A disk-shaped region of minor planets outside the orbit of Neptune.

Kuiper Belt

The Kuiper belt ( /ˈkaɪpər/ rhyming with "viper"), sometimes called the Edgeworth–Kuiper belt, is a region of the Solar System beyond the planets, extending from the orbit of Neptune (at 30 AU) to approximately 50 AU from the Sun. It is similar to the asteroid belt, although it is far larger—20 times as wide and 20 to 200 times as massive. Like the asteroid belt, it consists mainly of small bodies, or remnants from the Solar System's formation. While most asteroids are composed primarily of rock and metal, Kuiper belt objects are composed largely of frozen volatiles (termed "ices"), such as methane, ammonia and water. The classical belt is home to at least three dwarf planets: Pluto, Haumea, and Makemake. Some of the Solar System's moons, such as Neptune's Triton and Saturn's Phoebe, are also believed to have originated in the region.

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Some articles on Kuiper belt:

Planet X - Discovery of Further Trans-Neptunian Objects
... See also History of the Kuiper belt After the discovery of Pluto and Charon, no more trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs) were found until (15760) 1992 QB1 in ... Most are now recognised as part of the Kuiper belt, a swarm of icy bodies left over from the Solar System's formation that orbit near the ecliptic plane beyond Neptune ... Pluto itself is now recognized as being a member of the Kuiper belt and the second largest dwarf planet after Eris ...
List Of The Brightest Kuiper Belt Objects
... Since the year 2000, a number of Kuiper belt objects (KBOs) with diameters of between 500 and 1500 km (more than half that of Pluto) have been discovered ... to the acceptance of Pluto as the largest member of the Kuiper belt ...
Nice Model - Solar System Features - Formation of The Kuiper Belt
... Originally, the Kuiper belt was much denser and closer to the Sun, with an outer edge at approximately 30 AU ... for its ability to explain the occupancy of current orbital resonances in the Kuiper belt, particularly the 25 resonance ... it approached the objects in the proto-Kuiper belt, capturing some of them into resonances and sending others into chaotic orbits ...
Other Kuiper Belts
... They appear to fall into two categories wide belts, with radii of over 50 AU, and narrow belts (like our own Kuiper belt) with radii of between 20 and 30 AU and relatively sharp boundaries ... stars have an observed infrared excess which is believed to indicate massive Kuiper belt-like structures ... The left image is a "top view" of a wide belt, and the right image is an "edge view" of a narrow belt ...
Haumea Family - Formation and Evolution
... may not be the only elongated, rapidly rotating, large object in the Kuiper belt ... Gravitational interaction with Neptune has since shifted many objects from the Kuiper belt to the more distant scattered disc ... In today's sparsely populated Kuiper belt, the chance of such a collision occurring over the age of the Solar System is less than 0.1 percent ...

Famous quotes containing the word belt:

    The watchers in their leopard suits
    Waited till it was time,
    And aimed between the belt and boot
    And let the barrel climb.
    Louis Simpson (b. 1923)