Detached Kuiper Belt Objects

Objects in orbits having perihelia beyond about 40 AU. Their defining characteristic is that gravitational perturbations from Neptune seem unlikely to have been important, and the large perihelia presumably result from the past action of other forces.

Ideas that have been suggested include 1) perturbations from a closely passing star 2) perturbations from a more distant (undetected) planet, that might or might not still be present 3) perturbations in the early solar system resulting from planet migration and heavy mass loss from the Kuiper belt.

The first known example was 2000 CR105 (perihelion distance = 44 AU). The best-known example is 90377 Sedna (perihelion distance = 76 AU).

BackKuiper BeltComet Page

e-mail: David Jewitt