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Published on Jan 8, 2013
What happens when you have rogue planets, a massive nested planet, and a comet belt, all orbiting in the same plane? The simulation begins with two nested planets in near circular orbits near the star. One is a Neptune, but the other has three-Jupiter masses. I've added a third planet seen to the lower left, a Jupiter mass on a rogue orbit passing through the belt. Notice how the Jupiter mass disrupts the belt. However, the three-Jupiter mass nested planet also sends the Neptune on a rogue orbit. Because Neptune is less massive, it does not disturb the belt as much as the rogue Jupiter. The three-Jupiter mass planet on a nested orbit controls the evolution of the system. The simulation lasts 13,000 years, and in the end there are two rogue planets with orbits similar to that of Fomalhaut b.