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The search for life outside our Solar System

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Alan H
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Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

The search for life outside our Solar System

#1 Postby Alan H » August 24th, 2016, 6:21 pm

The Earth Next Door
Astronomers find an exoplanet that could be habitable—and it’s as close to us as it could possibly be
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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Tetenterre
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Re: The search for life outside our Solar System

#2 Postby Tetenterre » August 25th, 2016, 11:57 am

My bet is that it turns out not to be habitable. Requirements seem to be:

For life to exist:
The right location... YES
In the right kind of galaxy YES
Orbiting at the right distance... No, too close - will almost certainly be tidally locked
From the right type of star... No, it's a red dwarf (type M) - we almost certainly need something in the range of F7 - K1. It's also a UV Ceti type flare star, so the exoplanet would be periodically sterilised by X-rays
With the right arrangement of planets... Unknown, but highly unlikely
In a continuously stable orbit Unknown
A terrestrial planet of the right size... Possibly
With plate tectonics... Unknown
And a large moon Unknown, but highly unlikely

And for intelligent communicating beings:
An evolutionary trigger for complex life... Unknown
And the right time in evolution Unknown, but unlikely
Steve

Quantum Theory: The branch of science with which people who know absolutely sod all about quantum theory can explain anything.

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animist
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Re: The search for life outside our Solar System

#3 Postby animist » August 25th, 2016, 12:26 pm

TT - why does a life-friendly planet need a large moon? AH - The news is good about this planet, but proximity to us is not that wonderful, since it would apparently take 70K years to get there. I can't wait that long!

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Tetenterre
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Re: The search for life outside our Solar System

#4 Postby Tetenterre » August 25th, 2016, 5:15 pm

animist wrote:TT - why does a life-friendly planet need a large moon?
It stabilises the planet's rotational axis. This, in turn, stabilises seasons/climate (or, at least, removes one factor that can result in climate instability). This is thought to be necessary to give sufficiently stable conditions for abiogenesis to occur and for the subsequent life to becoms sustainable. It is also possible that the sort of impact that created the Moon was also the instigator of plate tectonics and it may be that the existence of a large moon makes plate tectonics more likely owing to its tidal forces on the planet's crust.

Conversely, massive climatic disruption is thought to be one of the triggers for a new burst of evolution, because the resulting extinctions create unoccupied environmental niches.
Steve

Quantum Theory: The branch of science with which people who know absolutely sod all about quantum theory can explain anything.

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Alan H
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Re: The search for life outside our Solar System

#5 Postby Alan H » February 22nd, 2017, 6:39 pm

Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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animist
Posts: 6074
Joined: July 30th, 2010, 11:36 pm

Re: The search for life outside our Solar System

#6 Postby animist » February 22nd, 2017, 7:48 pm

my hunch is that at least one of these planets really does contain the Garden of Eden - along with Adam and Eve. God just made a minor directional error when planting his children to do his will and telling us what was what

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animist
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Re: The search for life outside our Solar System

#7 Postby animist » February 23rd, 2017, 12:45 pm

animist wrote:
my hunch is that at least one of these planets really does contain the Garden of Eden - along with Adam and Eve. God just made a minor directional error when planting his children to do his will and telling us what was what
this was meant to be funny :D. "My hunch" after the EU referendum was that the end-result would be Soft Brexit - well, that is certainly possible, still, but not looking likely!


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