To: Dr. Robert L Millis, Director, Lowell Observatory, and Principal Investigator, Lowell
Deep Ecliptic Survey
c/o Dr. Marc W. Buie, Astronomer, Lowell Observatory (with readily found email address!),
and Investigator, Lowell Deep Ecliptic Survey
cc: ********; and, messageboard, Dr. Tom Van Flandern (www.metaresearch.org)
********* March 16, 2007
Open letter to the Director of the Lowell Observatory
Like Prof. Lowell, I studied Mathematics at Harvard College (B. A., cumlaude, Mathematics,
1977). The essential details of my recent work on Prof. Lowell's Planet X are posted, to Dr.
Tom Van Flandern's "www.metaresearch.org" messageboard, under the name, "Joe Keller",
in the thread "Requiem for Relativity". (I use Dr. Van Flandern's messageboard as an
alternative to "ArXiv.org".)
Planet X, which I have named Barbarossa, appears at
RA 11h 18m 03.2s Decl -7deg 58' 46" on the La Silla sky survey Red plate
SERC.ER.DSS2.713 dated January 31, 1987. Possibly there is a second appearance of
RA 11h 14m 36.0s -7deg 32' 17.5" on the Blue plate SERC.J.DSS1.713 dated May 8, 1983.
Assuming a circular orbit and making first order approximations to correct for Earth
parallax, Barbarossa has period 2640 yr. and is 191 AU from the sun. Accordingly, the
resonances of the orbital periods of the outer planets have discrepancies which advance
prograde with periods
Jupiter:Saturn 5:2 2780 yr
Saturn:Neptune 6:1 2180 yr
Jupiter:Uranus 7:1 -5970 = -2985 * 2 yr (retrograde)
Uranus:Neptune 2:1 4380 = 2190 * 2 yr
Saturn:Uranus 3:1 1190 = 2380 / 2 yr.
I discovered Barbarossa on February 15, 2007 as a sequence of statistical artifacts in the
USNO-B1.0 catalog. I informed the U. S. Naval Observatory on February 21.
I first saw the La Silla Red image of Barbarossa on March 4, and realized on March 5 that it
is Barbarossa. By comparison with the four nearest cataloged stars, Barbarossa's Red
magnitude is about +17.3. A 6% Red albedo would imply 46,000 mi diameter. Barbarossa
might be either a giant planet or a cold brown dwarf.
I realized yesterday, March 15, that the above La Silla Blue image is Barbarossa, which is
dim in Blue. The pattern seen on this Univ. of Strasbourg "Aladin" image depends on one's
monitor setting. At its best, it shows Barbarossa as a lean-to adjoining a nearby star with
a separate USNO-B catalog number. It shows a moon of Barbarossa's (I've named the
largest & next-largest moons, Frey & Freya) as a disjoint dark pixel 3" toward azimuth
245. From my drawing of the best image obtained (Prof. Lowell drew lines on Mars; I draw
pixel boxes), I estimate this moon to be 1.7 magnitudes dimmer than Barbarossa.
The Red La Silla image shows no disjoint moon, nor any star near enough to confuse.
Thorough computer search found the best fit for three points of light, was to have a moon
1.2 magnitudes dimmer than Barbarossa, 2.5" away at azimuth 275; and another moon
1.6 magnitudes dimmer 2" away at azimuth 75. Thus the Barbarossa system consistently
appears parallel to the ecliptic. Furthermore the best fit for one point of light, lay outside
the darkest pixel box, indicating either multiple sources or quickly varying magnitude. As
a gravitationally bound body subject to Poincare instability, Barbarossa hardly can rotate
appreciably during these 1 hr exposures.
In 2002 at a Physics and Astronomy conference, cosmic ray expert Ian McDiarmid
disparaged the statement that cosmic rays would be readily detected by ordinary
photographic materials onboard airplanes [let alone at 7800 ft at La Silla]. A Kuiper Belt
Object would leave a streak of this length, but even then, the magnitude would suggest
another Pluto or Sedna.
By great-circle extrapolation, with a rough correction for Earth parallax, Barbarossa's
March 10, 2007 position is
RA 11h 27m 10s Decl -9deg 18' 58".
Alternatively, my statistically-derived greatest-likelihood great circle, estimates the
Declination at this RA as
Decl -9deg 05' 46" (for RA 11h 27m 10s)
The greatest-likelihood great circle goes through this point with slope -7.35 arcminutes
Decl per minute of RA.
Joseph C. Keller, M. D.