NIbiru, Planet X, or Planet Nine - Large Outer Solar System Body Still Baffles
In his 1976 book, The Twelfth Planet, author and researcher Zecharia Sitchin proposed the existence of a massive, unidentified planet existing within our solar system. Sitchin based his claims on his reading of ancient Sumerian texts. He called the planet Nibiru and proposed that it followed an elliptical 3600 year orbit. Mainstream science, certain they had defined the make up the solar system, scoffed at such a claim. In the years since, many scientists have come face to face with evidence of such a body.
The date was December 30, 1983 and Washington Post staff writer, Thomas O’Toole, published an article titled Mystery Heavenly Body Discovered; Possibly as Large as Jupiter. (You can read the article here ).
The article details the discovery of a large body within our solar system in the direction of the Orion nebula. Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) made the discovery during its infrared sweeps of our solar system. The object was believed to be within about 50 billion miles of the Sun. A similar article appeared around the same time in the New York Times. That's ironic, given recent disclosures about UFOs from the same two newspapers.
Similar bodies have been detected or hypothesized by very credible scientists over the years. The body has gone by many names – Planet X, Hercolubus, Nemesis, and Tyche. Some have even linked it to the Sumerian historical account of the Planet Nibiru.
In the 1983 article, two distinguished scientists offered their thoughts on the discovery.
“All I can tell you is that we don’t know what it is,” Dr. Gerry Neugebauer, IRAS chief scientist for California’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and director of the Palomar Observatory for the California Institute of Technology, said in an interview.
“If it is really that close, it would be a part of our solar system,” said Dr. James Houck of Cornell University’s Center for Radio Physics and Space Research and a member of the
IRAS science team. “If it is that close, I don’t know how the world’s planetary scientists would even begin to classify it.”
The excitement in the media and within the scientific community quickly turned to silence. Few additional stories were published related to this object and the discovery was largely forgotten by the public. Much of mainstream science today poo poos that such an object exists in our solar system.
Dr. Robert Harrington, Director of U.S. Naval Observatory, took an interest in the topic. He was searching for a way to explain Uranus being turned on its side, Triton following a reverse orbit around Neptune, and Pluto’s odd behavior. He hypothesized that a planet 3-5 times the mass of the earth may have been the cause. He postulated a perpendicular orbit, relative to the plane of the solar system for the object. This coincided closely with Sitchin’s reading of ancient Sumerian texts that he believed described the Planet Nibiru.
Harrington and Sitchin met in 1990 to compare notes. Here's a video of part of that interview that appeared on a national TV show in The United States.
Sadly, Harrington died suddenly of a rare, fast-acting cancer. Many cry conspiracy about his death. That may be hard to prove. What's easy to prove is that Harrington's work was quickly discounted by a detractor to his theory, a NASA astronomer named E. Myles Standish. Standish revised Neptune's mass downward and claims that accounted for the claimed perturbation. That ended the story again for a few years.
Then we have the work of astrophysicists John Matese and Daniel Whitmire. Going back to the mid 1980s, they had been documenting an anomaly causing an unexpected number of short term comets to come into the inner solar system from a particular direction. They published a number of papers including, Planet X and the origins of the shower and steady state flux of short-period comets and Persistent Evidence of a Jovian Mass Solar Companion in the Oort Cloud.
Their theory also coincided with the work of other scientists looking for explanations for periodic mass extinctions on Earth. By 1999, Matese and Whitmire had named their proposed object Tyche. They proposed that Tyche may be a low-mass companion star to our sun.
The team hoped the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) spacecraft would locate the object. While the data from the mission will take decades to analyze, Daniel Whitmire acknowledged in an email exchange with me in 2014 that no evidence for Tyche had been found.
That should have finished the story, but Planet X just won't go away. In 2016, Astronomers Mike Brown and Konstantin Batygin announced thye were leading a team in search of a large planetary body in the outer solar system they have dubbed Planet Nine. They have been careful to separate their search from Nibiru or Planet X, but is that legitimate? What have found is more evidence that such an object exists.
Their evidence? Brown and team have noted the odd orbits of six trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs). They believe the orbits are best explained by a massive body in the outer solar system. So far the've been unable to locate the object, but they are confident they will soon capture an image of it.
Questions – we're full of them.
Is “Planet X” out there? If so, is it planet, a failed star, a binary companion to our Sun? Is there more than one object that has been detected?
Have all these distinguished scientists and researchers for the past 40 plus years been operating on faulty assumptions? Has our best equipment been wrong? Mainstream science say perturbations in Uranus’ and Neptune’s orbits have been explained. Many chalk that up as old information that resulted from miscalculations going back to the 1930s. Is that true?
Why is discussion of this topic muted, if not silenced outright? Why has it been left to a few intrepid scientists and “conspiracy theorists” to pursue what should be an exciting potential discovery for humanity?
Is this body the source of historical records of death and destruction on its passage, as claimed by Sitchin?
These questions perplex and tantalize, but today the mystery remains. The silence and denial is deafening. The people of the planet remain in the dark about whether or not another object lurks in the outer solar system and the implications.
Keep seeking. Keep questioning.
for 6 Sense Media