Should Charon be considered a dwarf planet?
Debate Rounds (1)
The IAU defines a dwarf planet as, "...an object in orbit around the Sun that is large enough (massive enough) to have its own gravity pull itself into a round (or nearly round) shape. Generally, a dwarf planet is smaller than Mercury. A dwarf planet may also orbit in a zone that has many other objects in it. For example, an orbit within the asteroid belt is in a zone with lots of other objects."
While the IAU has not decided upon a suitable definition for a natural satellite, Wikipedia defines it as, "...a celestial body that orbits another celestial body of greater mass (e.g., a planet, star, or dwarf planet), which is called its primary."
The term "binary system", at least in the context of planets, is not recognized by the IAU, so any classification of Pluto and Charon as a binary system is irrelevant.
By all relevant definitions, Charon is not a dwarf planet, because Charon orbits around Pluto and not the Sun (directly). It is a natural satellite, however, for that very reason, in addition to the reason that Pluto has a greater mass than Charon. Even though the barycenter of a Pluto-Charon system is outside Pluto, Charon still has an orbit around Pluto, making it satisfy the definition of a natural satellite.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Grandzam 1 year ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro provides no backing for their arguments, and Con has refuted these arguments by showing that no backing exists with Con's definitions. If Pro had provided backing in the first place, I might have needed to consider which argument was more convincing but the arguments goes to Con due to the unsupported statements. Sources also goes to Con because only Con used sources, which also made his argument far more credible than his opponent's.
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