South African Skeptics

TRAPPIST planets

Offline brianvds

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This has made the news recently:

https://www.nasa.gov/press-release/nasa-telescope-reveals-largest-batch-of-earth-size-habitable-zone-planets-around

Quote from the article:

The planets may also be tidally locked to their star, which means the same side of the planet is always facing the star, therefore each side is either perpetual day or night. This could mean they have weather patterns totally unlike those on Earth, such as strong winds blowing from the day side to the night side, and extreme temperature changes.

What I always wonder about such planets: wouldn't water tend to flee the sunward side and migrate to the dark side? Any water that falls as snow on the dark side would tend to stay there, and thus, slowly, the sunlit side would become a parched desert and the dark side covered in glaciers? Or would sea currents manage to withstand freezing and keep up a circulation between the light and dark side?


Offline BoogieMonster

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I'm guessing this means new coefficients for the drake equation?
"Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground, Silly monkeys, give them thumbs, they make a club and beat their brother down. How they survive, so misguided, is a mystery. Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability to lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here" - Tool


Offline Tweefo

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This has made the news recently:
The planets may also be tidally locked to their star, which means the same side of the planet is always facing the star, therefore each side is either perpetual day or night. This could mean they have weather patterns totally unlike those on Earth, such as strong winds blowing from the day side to the night side, and extreme temperature changes.

What I always wonder about such planets: wouldn't water tend to flee the sunward side and migrate to the dark side? Any water that falls as snow on the dark side would tend to stay there, and thus, slowly, the sunlit side would become a parched desert and the dark side covered in glaciers? Or would sea currents manage to withstand freezing and keep up a circulation between the light and dark side?
I think you are correct. A tidally locked world in the goldilocks zone should have a thin, nice strip (the twilight zone) with very warm desert on the one side and an icy desert on the other. This nice strip might have flowing water, but boiling away and freezing only a few (hundred kilometers?) further, might mean that it is not so nice a strip.  
If you don't agree with me you are obviously not from this planet.


Offline brianvds

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I think you are correct. A tidally locked world in the goldilocks zone should have a thin, nice strip (the twilight zone) with very warm desert on the one side and an icy desert on the other. This nice strip might have flowing water, but boiling away and freezing only a few (hundred kilometers?) further, might mean that it is not so nice a strip. 

I.e. no Trappists other than microbes, possibly. No Trappist monkeys, and no Trappist monks.

If a world is going to be tidally locked, a more friendly place might be an earth-sized satellite of a Jovian world in the Goldilocks zone...


Offline Rigil Kent

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This nice strip might have flowing water, but boiling away and freezing only a few (hundred kilometers?) further, might mean that it is not so nice a strip.  
Sunbathing will also be a bitch, as can no doubt be testified to by several laterally countershaded trappistian beach bums.
You know it's cold outside when you go outside and it's cold.


Offline Tweefo

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But from the tidally locked Trappist point of view, the idea of life on a revolving world must be absurd. Daylight followed by night every few hours? Ridiculous! Only bacteria can survive that.
If you don't agree with me you are obviously not from this planet.


Offline BoogieMonster

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It is interesting to think that should humanity have that science-fictional moment when we have to get on an ark-ship and colonise a new world.... we may now have found those worlds.
"Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground, Silly monkeys, give them thumbs, they make a club and beat their brother down. How they survive, so misguided, is a mystery. Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability to lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here" - Tool


Offline Rigil Kent

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It is interesting to think that should humanity have that science-fictional moment when we have to get on an ark-ship and colonise a new world.... we may now have found those worlds.
They are probably Catholic already.
You know it's cold outside when you go outside and it's cold.


Offline brianvds

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It is interesting to think that should humanity have that science-fictional moment when we have to get on an ark-ship and colonise a new world.... we may now have found those worlds.

The real science news sounds more and more like Arthur C. Clarke's The Songs of Distant Earth, one of those books that should have been turned into a movie long ago, so that we could complain about how bad it is compared to the book.


Offline brianvds

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It is interesting to think that should humanity have that science-fictional moment when we have to get on an ark-ship and colonise a new world.... we may now have found those worlds.
They are probably Catholic already.

And probably in no urgent need of copper wire or glass beads.