Talk:Dwarf planet/Naming

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Sept. 17-22 2006
September-October 2006

Key Word: "Planet"[edit]

Yes, I am just a layman and don't have letters after my title, but I think the keyword here is "planet". Whether Pluto or Eris are categorized as dwarf (or small) planets is irrelevant. They are still planets by the IAU's definitions of planets and their subcategories. Therefore, what is wrong with having Pluto as part of an exhibit of the solar system. For that matter, what is wrong with adding Eris to our exhibits and textbooks?

--Slaapz 05:29, 8 November 2006 (UTC)

That is an interesting question. You need to realize that this category is set to expand, if not explode. There are as many as a dozen more objects that can quality as a "dwarf planet" under the IAU rules. See the table "possible dwarf planets" in dwarf planet. Also, while the word "planet" is in "dwarf planet", the dwarf planets technically are part of the category of minor planets. There are now over 135,000 minor planets known, and more are constntly being cataloged.
The net result is that astronomers distinguish between the 8 planets (excluding Pluto now) and the other solar system bodies. Dwarf planets are a second tier of objects. With only three such objects designated, I can see what you want them included in exhibits and textbooks (and certainly the dwarf planets should be mentioned in textbooks). However, once you have over a dozen of these objects, your exhibits will begin to get a bit crowded, and the expectation is that there are many more dwarf planets out beyond Eris waiting to be discovered. After all, Sedna is almost as far away as Eris, but was discovered near its closest approach to the Sun. This indicates that there are more Sedna-like objects out there, and modern studies of the formation and evolution of the solar system lead many astronomers to believe that there are hundreds of such objects waiting to be found. --EMS | Talk 16:23, 8 November 2006 (UTC)
Dwarf planets are not minor planets, that's all speculation.—Preceding unsigned comment added by Something14 (talkcontribs)
Yes they are, at least per IAU definitions.Nergaal (talk) 10:54, 26 January 2008 (UTC)
The IAU web page describing the outcome of the 2006 vote appears to suggest otherwise, indicating that there are three categories: planet, dwarf planet, and SSSBs (which can also be described by the older term minor planets). Part of the confusion stems from the fact that there is no clear-cut statement as to what is what, which has caused problems for Wikipedia since the vote occurred. --Ckatzchatspy 11:15, 26 January 2008 (UTC)
  1. Pluto (pronounced /ˈpluːtoʊ/, from Latin: Plūto, Greek: Πλούτων), also designated 134340 Pluto...
  2. Eris (pronounced /ˈɪərɪs/, also /ˈɛrɪs/ as in Greek Έρις[6]), formally designated 136199 Eris and....
  3. Ceres (pronounced /ˈsɪəriːz/,[15] or as Latin: Cerēs), also designated 1 Ceres (see minor planet names), is the
These are the first few words on the articles of dwarf planets. What do you think the numbers 134340, 136199 and 1 mean? I bet it is not the designated minor planet number, but a drunk official throwing some dices.Nergaal (talk) 14:04, 26 January 2008 (UTC)


Archived talk through the end of October 2006. RandomCritic 12:15, 22 November 2006 (UTC)