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Eris is not Nibiru

Eris and Dysnomia
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Image Credit: NASA/Hubble

The dwarf planet Eris is frequently claimed to be Nibiru.

Discovery of Eris

Eris is a dwarf planet, discovered on January 5, 2005, from images taken on October 21, 20031 by astronomers Mike Brown (Caltech), Chad Trujillo (Gemini Observatory), and David Rabinowitz (Yale University), with Mike Brown leading the team. It was discovered during a survey at Palomar Observatory's Samuel Oschin telescope. At the time of its discovery, it was hailed as "the tenth planet".

Controversy over Pluto

Data from the Hubble Space Telescope and the Keck telescope stated Eris was slightly larger than Pluto. Astronomers began to speculate that there could be hundreds of thousands of icy bodies beyond Neptune's orbit. At the 2006 IAU General Assembly in Prague the definition of "planet" was debated extensively2, but every definition that included Pluto also included Eris and several other TNOs3 that had been discovered in the preceding years.4

Eventually, a new definition of what a planet is emerged from the 2006 General Assembly. According to the IAU, a planet is defined as a celestial body that orbits a star, that is massive enough to be rounded by its own gravity, and has cleared its neighboring region of planetesimals. Dwarf planets, such as Pluto and Eris, don't have their neighborhoods cleared, which makes them ineligible to be considered as a planet.

Characteristics of Eris

  • Mass - 1.66 x 1022 kilograms (0.28% of Earth)
  • Size - 1,447 miles [Unconfirmed]
  • Density - 2.3 grams per cubic centimeter (Half ice, half rock)
  • Orbital Period - 557 years

Eris poses no danger

Since Nibiru has been debunked countless of times, proponents must find a way to keep their claim alive. One way that they have found to be effective is to bunny-hop onto different celestial objects, most notably Eris. This is most likely due to the fact that Eris is the most recognizable named Trans-Neptunian Object, because of its role in the 'demotion' of Pluto.

Since Eris has a highly elliptical orbit, it gets much attention by Nibiru proponents. Some Nibiru proponents have claimed that Eris is Nibiru, but that NASA changed the name in order to "cover it up"5. This comparison is completely bogus. Let's compare these two objects by the information given:

  • Nibiru's proposed orbital period is 3600 years, while Eris's is 557 years.
  • Nibiru is claimed to be four times the size of earth, while Eris is about the same size as Pluto.
  • Nibiru has a highly elliptical orbit that brings it to within 1 AU of the sun (the orbit of the Earth). Eris does have a highly elliptical orbit, but the orbit only brings it in to about 37 AU, or 3.5 billion miles. In other words, this tiny ice ball comes no closer than 3.5 billion miles on its closest approach.

Are you beginning to see a pattern? It seems that the Nibiru proponents fail to give up, and can't accept that there is no Nibiru. Eris is just a tiny ice ball, a very long way away from us.


Eris is a real object, but it is very far away from us, and is completely harmless.


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