Welcome, Haumea

The Solar System’s planetary roll call just got longer. From today’s Astronomy Picture of the Day:

One of the strangest objects in the outer Solar System was classified as a dwarf planet last week and given the name Haumea. This designation makes Haumea the fifth designated dwarf planet after Pluto, Ceres, Eris, and Makemake. Haumea’s smooth but oblong shape make it extremely unusual. Along one direction, Haumea is significantly longer than Pluto, while in another direction Haumea has an extent very similar to Pluto, while in the third direction is much smaller. Haumea’s orbit sometimes brings it closer to the Sun than Pluto, but usually Haumea is further away.

It may be just a dwarf planet, but I think it’s interesting enough to visit on the Grand Tour. Who knows what we might find on that (probably) icy planet and its two little moons?