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How far is Eris from Earth?

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Quick Answer

The dwarf planet Eris's orbit ranges between 37 and 96 astronomical units from Earth; that converts to approximately 3.4 and 8.9 billion miles. An astronomical unit (AU) is the distance between the Earth and sun and is approximately 93 million miles.

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Full Answer

One of the largest dwarf planets known today, Eris was discovered in 2005. It measures approximately 1,864 miles in diameter, making it slightly larger than Pluto, and its orbital period is about 557 years. Its discovery led to Pluto's declassification as a planet.

Eris was discovered by Chad Trujillo, Mike Brown and David Rabinowitz during examinations of images of the Kuiper Belt taken at the Palomar Observatory in 2003. It is named after Eris, the Greek goddess of discord and strife. The name has proven to be apt because of Eris's place at the center of debate concerning the definition of a planet.

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