A ninth planet may turn out to be another law of physics

Scientists have suggested that the unusual distribution of bodies on the borders of the Solar System, considered evidence of the existence of a ninth planet, may actually be caused by something else. They proved that it could be proof that there was a law of gravity in the Universe that was different from the generally accepted one.

A ninth planet or modified Newtonian dynamics? Source: phys.org

Alternative law of gravity

Two American theoretical physicists, Harsh Mathur and Katherine Brown, published a study in which they provided evidence that the gravitational interaction of bodies in space may be described by a completely unusual Newton’s law and Einstein’s assumptions. At the same time, they found evidence of this directly in our Solar System.

We are talking about a theory known as “Modified Newtonian Dynamics”. For close distances and, consequently, for strong gravity, it works exactly the same as the classical one. But it is worth being in a place where the forces of gravity become very weak and it begins to show completely different predictions.

The Modified Newtonian Dynamics works well on the scales of galaxies and their clusters. Its main feature is that it allows building a system of a world without dark matter, which no one has seen, but everyone is looking for. In the case of using a new theory, observations begin to coincide with predictions without adding this substance.

A ninth planet of the Solar System

Usually, scientists look for evidence of the correctness of the Modified Newtonian Dynamics in observations of galaxies. But Mathur and Brown are searching for a ninth planet of the Solar System. Usually, a strange grouping of the orbits of trans-Neptune objects is cited as proof of its existence.

Therefore, the researchers decided to involve Modified Newtonian Dynamics in the calculations. They hoped that this would help them more accurately predict the orbit of an unknown planet. But suddenly they discovered that when applying this theory, the ninth planet was simply not needed. Because modeling of the Solar System in this case gives the very clustering that has been haunting astronomers for several years.

So there is still no ninth planet, but instead, our whole theory of gravity may turn out to be wrong. Even the authors of the study are in no hurry to make final conclusions, since their sample is small and an error could creep into the calculations.

According to phys.org

Follow us on Twitter to get the most interesting space news in time