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136472 Makemake, 2005 FY9
Originally provisionally named ‘Easterbunny’

A large body that travels around the Sun as part of the Kuiper Belt, beyond the orbit of Pluto. Makemake is the third largest Kuiper Belt object known, after Pluto and Eris, and is unusual in having no known satellites (most comparable dwarf planets have at least one small moon).

Like many other bodies in this area of the Solar System, Makemake's 310-year orbit is highly inclined, tilting nearly 30° in comparison with the plane of the Ecliptic. This orbit is also somewhat eccentric, carrying Makemake out more than 52 AU from the Sun. The planet reached this aphelion point in March 2016, and has begun its long journey back inwards (its perihelion, or closest point to the Sun, is at 39 AU, so at times it is closer to the Sun than Pluto).

Makemake has a reddish surface, typical of dwarf planets within the Kuiper Belt, and thought to be due to the presence of tholins, compounds formed from methane and ethane (both of which have also been detected on Makemake's surface).

This body's name reflects the object's association with Easter, as it was discovered close to Easter 2005 (and at first unofficially named 'Easterbunny'). Its official name Makemake comes from the creator deity of the native people of Easter Island.


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