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A disk-shaped region in the outer solar system lying beyond the orbit of Neptune and extending to a distance of about 50 astronomical units, containing thousands of small icy bodies, some of which are on highly elliptical orbits, periodically visiting the inner solar system as comets.
[After Gerard Kuiper (1905-1973), Dutch-born American astronomer who speculated about the existence of such a region.]
(Astronomy) a region of the solar system beyond the orbit of Neptune, some 30–1000 astronomical units from the sun, containing up to one thousand million icy planetesimals or comet nuclei. See also Oort
[C20: named after G. P. Kuiper (1905–73), Dutch American astronomer, who proposed it in 1951]
A disk-shaped region in the outer solar system, containing thousands of small, icy celestial bodies. Comets that make one complete orbit of the sun in less than 200 years come from this area. The Kuiper belt lies beyond the orbit of Neptune and includes Pluto, which was traditionally classed with the planets. In 2006, the International Astronomical Union declared Pluto to be a dwarf planet that resides in the Kuiper Belt. Compare Oort cloud.
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|Noun||1.||Kuiper belt - a disk-shaped region of minor planets outside the orbit of Neptune|
region, part - the extended spatial location of something; "the farming regions of France"; "religions in all parts of the world"; "regions of outer space"
solar system - the sun with the celestial bodies that revolve around it in its gravitational field