Habitable Planets Will Most Likely be Cold, Dry “Pale Yellow Dots”

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Habitable Planets Will Most Likely be Cold, Dry “Pale Yellow Dots”

Post by fred8615 »

Remember all the habitable planets we’ve seen in science fiction movies? There’s wintry Hoth, for example, and overwhelmingly hot Dune. The folks in Interstellar visited an ocean world and a desolate rocky world. For all their differences, these places were still what they call on Star Trek M-class habitable worlds. Sure they weren’t all like Earth, but that made them excitingly alien for the lifeforms they did support. In the real universe, it seems that alien worlds not quite like ours could be the norm. Earth could be the real alien world.

According to a pair of researchers in Europe, pale blue dots like our planet probably aren’t all that common. Instead, many habitable planets could be colder and dryer than ours. Moreover, because they might not have as much water, these places could look more like pale yellow dots.

Planetary scientists Tilman Spohn and Dennis Höning modeled possible exoplanets to see how the evolution of continents and planetary water cycles could shape the development of habitable worlds. They concluded that planets have approximately an 80 percent probability of being mostly covered by land. That is, they’d have mostly continental landscapes. Another 20 percent of possibly habitable worlds would likely be mainly oceanic. A tiny percentage (less than one percent) would be similar to Earth’s land-water distribution.

Read more: https://www.universetoday.com/157712/ha ... llow-dots/
Frederick J. Barnett
"Someone's got to take the responsibility if the job's going to get done!! Do you think that's easy?!" Gregory Peck - The Guns Of Navarone
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