The Kuiper Belt

Maddie Kosmin, Cynthia Jimenez, Alyssa Huculak

Threats Posed by Kuiper Belt on Earth

The Kuiper Belt is way beyond our planet, it lays between Neptune and Pluto. Because the Kuiper Belt lays so far out in our solar system the gravity from the outer planets disturbs objects in the belt. These objects that are disturbed are comets within the belt that come loose from the belts gravity and are flung towards the inner solar system. Although we are now able to see the belt cosmologists still see it as threat. Even with being able to see the belt it does not mean we can see the objects that leave from it. With our new technology we are not able to see these comets because they are mostly composed of dust particles and ice. When they leave the belt they move very slowly and can not be able to be seen until they are close to earth and by then it may be to late. Another reason why our technology are unable to see these comets is because they are not solid rocks they are bunches of small ones put together and when they enter the atmosphere they can break apart from one another. Because the Kuiper Belt is not the only belt that has comets or astroids, the astroid belt nearest to earth can help keep the inner planets safe if the masses crash into one another. On the other hand they can collide and make a bigger mess of astroids that can go in all different directions and have a bigger probability of hitting earth. Some scientists believe that the astroid/comet that almost destroyed all vegetation and the dinosaurs may have come from the belt. Another threat the belt poses is when the dusty icy comets come closer to the inner planets the more they heat up from the sun and when they get too close they can explode. When it explodes the dust from the comets will attract to the sun and can make a ring around the sun temporarily blocking the light. Since the heat from the sun rays will be blocked, this will cause the temperature on earth to drop to the point where it gets freezing cold. The main threat that the Kuiper Belt poses on Earth is if a comet happens to reach Earth and cause the light from the sun to be blocked for several decades.

Scientists Warn About Dangers To Earth From Giant Comets