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Kuiper belt




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Artist's rendering of the Kuiper Belt and hypothetical more distant Oort cloud

The Kuiper belt is an area of the Solar System beyond the orbit of Neptune (at 30 astronomical units) to 50 AU from the Sun.

The objects within the Kuiper Belt together with the members of the scattered disk beyond, are together called trans-Neptunian.

Many objects such as dwarf planets in the Kuiper belt are much bigger than the ones in the asteroid belt and are round. At least some Kuiper belt objects are icebound.

The first objects in the Kuiper belt to be found were Pluto and Charon (moon) but the belt was only identified and named in 1992 when more Kuiper belt objects (KBOs) were found. A few thousand have since been discovered and more than 70,000 KBOs over 100 km (62 mi) in diameter are thought to exist.



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