What is Arrokoth?

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What is Arrokoth?  Blog Image


Recently, scientists proposed a model to explain Arrokoth’s ice core.

About Arrokoth 

  • It is one of thousands of ‘icy worlds” in the Kuiper Belt, or the outer zone of the solar system that lies beyond Neptune. In the language of the Powhatan tribe, Arrokoth means “sky”.
  • It is the farthest object in space that has been explored by a human space-craft.It was discovered in 2014 using the Hubble Space Telescope.
  • It is a double-lobed object and resembles a snowman. It is believed it may have ancient ‘gaseous ice’ stored deep within it from when the object first formed billions of years ago.

Key facts about Kuiper Belt

  • It is also called the Edgeworth-Kuiper belt, is a flat ring of small icy bodies that revolve around the Sun beyond the orbit of the planet Neptune. 
  • It is named after Gerard Kuiper, a Dutch-American astronomer who hypothesised the existence of such a region in the 1950s.
  • There are millions of these icy objects, collectively referred to as Kuiper Belt objects (KBOs) or trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs), in this belt.
  • Composition: The Kuiper Belt is primarily composed of small icy bodies, such as dwarf planets, asteroids, and comets.

Q1: What are Asteroids?

These are sometimes called minor planets, are rocky remnants left over from the early formation of our solar system about 4.6 billion years ago. Most of these ancient space rubble can be found orbiting the Sun between Mars and Jupiter within the main asteroid belt.

Source: Science for All | What is Arrokoth?