A planet is an astronomical object orbiting a star or stellar remnant that is massive enough to be rounded by its own gravity, is not massive enough to cause thermonuclear fusion, and has cleared its neighbouring region of planetesimals.
The term planet is ancient, with ties to history, science, mythology, and religion. The planets were originally seen by many early cultures as divine, or as emissaries of deities. As scientific knowledge advanced, human perception of the planets changed, incorporating a number of disparate objects.
In 2006, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) officially adopted a resolution defining planets within the Solar System. This definition has been both praised and criticized, and remains disputed by some scientists because it excludes many objects of planetary mass based on where or what they orbit.
767 total views, 2 views today