Monday, June 13, 2011

A Goldilocks Planet needs just the right Tides

Artist's concept of a large,
rocky extrasolar planet. 
Lots of planets surround other stars ... but the idea that we will find life when we find a planet at just the right distance is far too simplistic. Science Daily reported that “Tides can render the so-called ‘habitable zone’ around low-mass stars uninhabitable.” Astronomers at the Astrophysical Institute Potsdam studied the effects of tides on planets around low-mass stars (the most numerous stars in the galaxy) and found that the lack of seasons, the increased heat and volcanism, and synchronous rotation (the same side always facing to the star) make them uncomfortable at best, and perhaps uninhabitable.

“I think that the chances for life existing on exoplanets in the traditional habitable zone around low-mass stars are pretty bleak, when considering tidal effects,” lead researcher Rene Heller remarked. “If you want to find a second Earth, it seems that you need to look for a second Sun.”

Marko comments: You won't find another Goldilocks Planet, because God created just one! Let's see, we need just the right distance from the star, just the right distance from the center of the galaxy, just the right tides, just the right temperature for liquid water, just the right amount of ultraviolet light, just the right protection from asteroids, just the right...

Those who insist on looking for this second Sun might as well look for someone else beside Jesus to save them, too. But sorry, there is no one who qualifies.

(Based on "Habitable Zones Constrained by Tide", Creation-Evolution Headlines, February 2011)

(also published in Creation Matters, a publication of Creation Research Society, Volume 16, Number 2, March/April 2011, to appear at

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