14 Fun Eris Facts for Kids

If you’re looking for facts about the planet Eris, then you’re in luck! Eris is one of the dwarf planets that exist beyond Neptune. As it’s the biggest if the dwarf planets, it’s often thought of as smaller than Pluto. But the truth is that it’s larger than Pluto (not by much) and all of the dwarf planets too.

Known for its white colour, which makes it stand out from the other dwarf planets, the surface temperature of Eris is very cold. So, let’s take a look at some of the greatest facts about the planet Eris.

  1. Eris is named after the Roman Goddess of Strife. Although there are many people now named Eris, the Goddess Eris is actually most well known for starting the Trojan War!
  2. Eris was discovered back in 2005, which was the same time another dwarf planet, Haumea, was discovered too.
  3. Eris is located in the Kuiper belt, which is a large circular ring around the sun which extends further back than the main planets. All of the other 4 Dwarf planets are located in the Kuiper Belt too, except Ceres, which is located in the Asteroid Belt.
  4. Eris is very, very far away from the Sun, so it’s often frozen. It ends up looking like snow due to this reason.
  5. Eris was found in the same time as two of the other dwarf planets, Haumea and Makemake.
  6. It has the largest mass of any of the dwarf planets, with astronomers claiming that it has up to 0.27% mass of the Earth!
  7. We originally thought that Eris would be the 10th planet in the solar system. However, this was later changed and categorized into planets and dwarf planets, with Pluto getting demoted because of the new dwarf planet discoveries.
  8. Like most dwarf planets, Eris doesn’t have any rings. The only dwarf planet that we know has any rings to date is the planet Haumea, which has 1!
  9. If we took all of the objects that are in the Asteroid belt (including Ceres), they could fit inside of Eris – it’s that big (in comparison to the Asteroid belt, anyway!).
  10. Because of Eris’s inclination of orbit, it actually passes through different constellations. It is currently in the Cetus constellation, but this won’t be forever. In 2036, it will pass through into the Pisces constellation!
  11. A human weighs 12x less on Eris than they do on Earth. This means that if you had an 160lb person on Earth, they would weigh less than one stone on Eris! (13.333lbs)
  12. Eris is the most distant known object known within our solar system – well, technically its moon Dysnomia is when is orbits Eris!
  13. The moon that orbits Eris, Dysnomia, takes its name from the Goddess of Lawlessness. In Greek mythology, she is the daughter of the Greek Goddess Eris.
  14. Like the other dwarf planets, astronomers think that Eris is primarily made up of rock around its surface. However, it’s thought that most of the dwarf planet is actually made up of ice, which makes sense when you consider its distance from the Sun.

Eris actually has 27% more mass than Pluto, BUT Pluto is still a little bit larger than Eris! Both Eris and Pluto are significantly bigger than the other dwarf planets that make up the rest of the solar system.

Eris isn’t defined as a planet because when the decision was made to categorize the difference between a planet and a dwarf planet, it didn’t meet the requirement of clearing out it’s orbit. For this reason, it’s not classified as a planet.

Like the other dwarf planets situated in the Kuiper belt, it is very very cold on Eris. Actually, the temperature changes between -217 degrees and -243 degrees. This means that the dwarf planet is extremely cold and is one of the rare miniature icy worlds that makes up the inner solar system.

Eris has one moon, which is called Dysnomia. This is named after the daughter of the Roman goddess Eris, who is the Goddess of Lawnessness.

Eris has one of the most similar day lengths to Earth. A full day on Eris is equal to 25.9 Earth hours, so it is very similar.

As you can see, there are a lot of interesting facts about Eris, which is one of the more recently discovered dwarf planets. Of course, there is always more to learn and I’m sure there will be more updated about Eris over the coming years! If you have any cool facts about Eris or have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment below!

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