The Ninth Planet/ Open Lines

Hosted byJimmy Church

The Ninth Planet/ Open Lines

About the show

In the first half, guest host Jimmy Church (email) welcomed theoretical archaeo-astronomer Walter Cruttenden, who discussed the recent scientific discoveries of a possible new planet as well as "gravity waves." Ten years ago, Cruttenden presented the theory that, based on the effects on the outer objects in the solar system, as well as the strangely inclined and elliptical orbit of Pluto, that there had to be another large gravitational attractor besides the sun affecting the solar system. "There's multiple items that point to a large object out there," he said, and added that the theory of another large, but unseen object beyond Pluto was even being discussed just after the time of its discovery in 1930.

Cruttenden spoke extensively about Mike Brown, the astronomer leading the research team at Caltech who originally led the effort to demote Pluto to "dwarf planet" status, and who has since tried to locate a suspected giant planet in the outer solar system. As more objects were discovered by Brown and his team, they noticed that they were lining up in an unusual way that could not be explained by the gravitational influence of the Sun or any of the outer planets. Since the existence of a new ninth planet has been proposed, Cruttenden noted that there are probably "a thousand different astronomers" now searching for it. Cruttenden noted that the object may be covered in dark material so that it would be very difficult for space telescopes such as Hubble or Kepler to observe.

He also discussed the possibility that the object may be a small, very old star that is locked in a binary system with the Sun. "I think stars like companions as much as people do," he joked. In addition to the two celestial motions (Earth's rotation and orbit around the Sun) which cause day and night and the seasons, Cruttenden proposed that the discovery of a third motion (around a distant binary star) may lead to a new way of looking at the history of the planet. There are hints in ancient literature about a cosmic 10- to 20,000 year cycle, which is the proposed orbital period for the unknown planet or star, he added.

The importance of the recent discovery of "gravity waves" was also discussed. Cruttenden, who said that it "gives us a new way to look at the universe," explained that up to now we have been looking at the stars by visible light, radio waves, and other forms of electromagnetic radiation, and with some excitement, noted that we may now be able to "see things we didn't know existed" by observing the effects of these waves.

Open Lines:

During the second half, Jimmy and listener Don discussed the possibility that our reality is a simulation in a larger universe. Jimmy then proposed that an alien civilization may have uploaded their consciousness into a kind of computer software and then "downloaded" it into a biological entity when they found a suitable planet to explore, such as Earth. Later, Carl asked whether Einstein's theories were correct or viable, and "DC" from the Bronx checked in to express her concern over the rapid and unchecked development of artificial intelligence.

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