SCP-2362
rating: +29+x
pluto.jpg

Image of SCP-2362 and its satellites taken before launch of Orpheus

Item #: SCP-2362

Object Class: Keter

Special Containment Procedures: Public knowledge of SCP-2362 in its current state is to be suppressed by any means necessary. Interception and suppression of astronomical data indicating the current state of SCP-2362, the organic composition of SCP-2362, or the existence of SCP-2362-1 is conducted by Mobile Task Force Omicron-12 (“Planet Killers”). MTF Omicron-12 is also tasked with fabricating astronomical data in order to decrease public interest in SCP-2362.

In the event that the current state of SCP-2362 becomes apparent to the public through some lapse in Foundation security, MTF Omicron-12 will disseminate fabricated data indicating that SCP-2362 was reduced to its current state during a collision with a Kuiper Belt object of comparable size (situational contingency protocol 2362-A).

In the event that the existence of SCP-2362-1 becomes apparent to the public, MTF Omicron-12 will disseminate fabricated data indicating that SCP-2362-1 is merely a Kuiper Belt object following an escape orbit resulting from gravitational interaction with neighboring objects (situational contingency protocol 2362-B).

Should SCP-2362-1 reach a great enough distance to render it undetectable by civilian and government equipment, MTF Omicron-12 will disseminate partially accurate data indicating the current state of SCP-2362 along with fabricated data indicating that SCP-2362 was reduced to its current state during a collision with a Kuiper Belt object of comparable size (situational contingency protocol 2362-C).

Any civilian or government probes sent to investigate SCP-2362 or SCP-2362-1 must be intercepted.

Researchers interpreting data from the Foundation lunar radio observatory are to notify O5 command of any changes in the trajectory of SCP-2362-1 immediately.

Description: SCP-2362 is the designation of Pluto, an interior Kuiper Belt object, following the discovery of its organic composition by Foundation researchers in 1983. SCP-2362 is currently a trans-Neptunian debris field orbiting the Sun with an aphelion1 of 48.9 AU, a perihelion2 of 29.7 AU, a mean eccentricity3 of 0.248, and an orbital period4 of 248 years. SCP-2362 was reduced to this state during the emergence of SCP-2362-1 from its southern pole (see event log 2362-A).

SCP-2362-1 is an object approximately 900 km in length, consisting of a bell-shaped mass with thirteen trailing appendages and generally resembling a jellyfish of the genus Pelagia. It radiates blue light and has no discernible surface features. SCP-2362-1 is able to propel itself by expanding and contracting its appendages. The mechanism of this propulsion is poorly understood, but may have some similarity to conventional ion propulsion given the stream of charged particles detected in the object's wake. Upon its emergence, the natural satellites of SCP-2362 were torn apart by tidal forces and now form part of the debris field. SCP-2362-1 is currently following an escape trajectory as it heads towards the vicinity of Barnard’s Star at a speed exceeding 30,000 m/s. As it is estimated to leave the solar system at some point within the year 20██, the object is not considered a threat to life on Earth at this point in time.

While SCP-2362 is visible from Earth through high power telescopes, the debris field is dense enough that a difference from its appearance previous to event 2362-A is only perceptible with the telescopes of some observatories and artificial satellites. MTF Omicron-12 has infiltrated said observatories and satellites, preventing them from obtaining new images of SCP-2362 (including images of SCP-2362 fragments that have left the vicinity of the debris field) or any images of SCP-2362-1.

Foundation probe 76EU ("Eurydice") is currently en route to SCP-2362-1.

Event Log 2362-A:

05/05/2006: Radar data from Foundation probe 45OR (“Orpheus”), currently in orbit of SCP-2362, indicates that the central mass of the object is rapidly shifting towards its southern pole. While SCP-2362 is already suspected to be of biological origin given its exclusively organic composition, a hypothesis that SCP-2362 is a living organism is put forward by the Orpheus research team stationed at Site-██.

05/21/2006: Orpheus data indicates that the surface of SCP-2362 is beginning to disintegrate. Large fissures open across the object as material begins to slough off and form a cloud around it.

06/10/2006: A gigantic fissure begins to open across the object’s southern pole. Fissure measures approximately 50 km in length and 10 km in width.

06/11/2006: Fissure measures approximately 230 km in length and 50 km in width.

06/12/2006: Fissure measures approximately 950 km in length and 370 km in width. Orbits of satellites are noticeably deteriorating.

06/23/2006: Thirteen masses begin to protrude from southern fissure, each 50 km across. Seven of the masses appear to be pushing against one side of the fissure with six pushing against the other side.

06/27/2006: Fissure widens to fully encompass SCP-2362 as the thirteen masses further protrude from it. The object splits into two halves, revealing that SCP-2362 is a hollow shell around its central mass. Central mass is designated as SCP-2362-1.

07/04/2006: SCP-2362-1 departs from vicinity of SCP-2362. As SCP-2362-1 contracts and expands its appendages, the object somehow achieves a constant acceleration of approximately 10 m/s2. As SCP-2362-1 leaves SCP-2362 behind, its tidal forces tear it and its satellites apart, forming a large debris field. SCP-2362-1 ceases acceleration after approximately 50 minutes, bringing its speed to over 30,000 m/s.

Addendum 1: Following infiltration by MTF Omicron-12, the International Astronomical Union revoked the status of “Pluto” as a planet on 08/24/2006 . While creating controversy and greatly increasing the exposure of SCP-2362 in the short term, it is deemed necessary for discouraging public interest in it in the long term.

SCP-2362 will remain known to scientists and astronomy enthusiasts, but common knowledge of SCP-2362 will likely subside within one to two generations as it is no longer included in textbook lists of planets and receives less attention from educational programming.

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Fabricated image of SCP-2362 received by NASA from intercepted flyby mission "New Horizons"

Addendum 2: While the NASA probe “New Horizons” is intended to provide the public with the first detailed images of SCP-2362, MTF Omicron-12 has successfully intercepted the mission and is releasing false data accordingly. Fortunately as with most NASA missions, public interest is sufficiently low, so it is considered to be of little risk.

Addendum 3: Recently gathered spectrographic data suggests that trans-Neptunian objects Haumea, Eris, and Makemake are of similar organic composition to SCP-2362. Foundation probes 87KA ("Kaulu"), 88AL ("Algos"), and 89TA ("Tangata") are currently en route to these objects respectively. Foundation astronomers are now conducting mass spectral analysis of Kuiper Belt and Scattered Disk objects.

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