| The divine comedy|
The term Quaoar comes from a character in a Native American creation story. Weywot (the name of its apparent moon) is derived from Quaoar's son's name.
Chad Trujillo and Michael E. Brown discovered Quaoar with a 48-inch wide telescope at Palomar Observatory at the California Institute of Technology. Using the Hubble Space Telescope to measure its width and diameter, they found it to be around 800 miles in diameter.
It takes around 288 Earth years to complete one "Quaoarian" orbit, and it is composed primarily of various volatile elements and rocks. It also apparently has a moon, named Weywot (about 40 km across).
John Hartnett in the Journal of Creation claims that the composition of Quaoar's surface, being water and ammonia, is "clear evidence" in favor of a young solar system. He uses it to argue against a 5-billion-year timescale, as the smooth ice surface "would have worn away" in just a few million years. Jonathan Sarfati has also taken the time to reassure us that Quaoar, like the comets, was created on the fourth day.
In reality, the surface, like that of Pluto, is thought to refresh itself through cryovolcanism.
- Or maybe not. It's currently a Trans-Neptunian Object or TNO and is one of the potential dwarf planets out there.
- There's a debate over whether Charon is a moon or not.