Niku, strange object,
YouTube screenshot/ secureteam 10

A new object discovered by astronomers is acting pretty bizarre.

The object dubbed Niku – which means rebellious in Chinese -- was spotted beyond Neptune with the help of Pan-STARRS (Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System ) in Hawaii.

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Pan-STARRS is a system of telescopes and cameras devised to spot near-Earth objects (NEOs).

This strange object is found to be160,000 times fainter than the eighth planet of our solar system, Neptune and so far it has been observed 22 times, Popular Mechanics reported.

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Niku's diameter is less than 201 kilometres (125 miles) But what makes it truly strange is that, unlike other celestial bodies which move around the Sun in the same direction along a similar plane, this object moves upward in an opposite direction and has a tilt of 110 degrees from the rest of the Solar System, a report by Huffington Post revealed.

Niku, strange object,
YouTube screenshot/ secureteam 10

This categorises Niku as a trans-Neptunian object (TNO). The astronomers also guesstimate that this object is not alone and is part of a cluster instead.

NASA researchers have stated that Niku is not the only retrograde orbit; some other bodies, mostly comets, exhibit this phenomenon too. The scientists are still baffled over the mystery behind its orbit.

"An unknown mechanism is required to explain the observed clustering," a research team from the Harvard–Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics said in a statement.

Researchers formulated various hypotheses and described this object to be a hidden planet and even an unseen star.

"It suggests that there's more going on in the outer Solar System than we're fully aware of," said astrophysicist Matthew Holman, who was a part of the team that discovered Niku, as quoted by New Scientist.

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