- It’s been a long road to discovering 840 minor planets beyond Neptune: here’s what we found! This article appeared in the March Equinox 2018 issue of The Planetary Society’s member magazine, The Planetary Report. Posted with permission.
- On its brief passage by Earth, we found the colours of the first interstellar object, 1I/ʻOumuamua, are like those seen in our outer Solar System!
- Is there a distant giant planet in our Solar System, yet unseen? Here’s what new OSSOS discoveries can say; its signature on distant TNOs is distinctive but very hard to spot in past surveys. The 20,000 year-long orbits of little worlds like 2013 SY99 may instead be from diffusion, as I discuss here.
My research aims to help build our understanding of the earliest history of our Solar System. How did the planets form? Why do we see them in their current positions? In the last fifteen years, our story of how our Solar System came to be in its present state has altered dramatically - and this is largely due to knowing more about some of the smallest worlds in our planetary system.
The formation of the planets left a population of remnant worlds orbiting on the outer edges of the Solar System, in the vast spaces beyond Neptune. These small objects, no larger than the state of Western Australia, have remained near-undisturbed on their orbits. They offer a snapshot of the earliest times, and their existence places limits on the potential migrations of the giant planets.