We just need a little change to make the Earth more habitable. The problem: it depends on Jupiter

  • 10

Although they have passed 500 years since Nicolaus Copernicus launched a direct hook to classical celestial mechanics; although a little more than 150 have passed since Darwin put us in our place (evolutionarily speaking) and about 100 since Einstein explained to us that not even matter and time were what we thought they were; even though it’s been 90 Lemaitre glimpse the idea of ​​the ‘Big Bang’ at the bottom of an astronomical equation almost nothing has changed. We know a lot about the universe, yes; but we continue to believe we are the navel of the universe.

That, although it may not seem like it, has implications for current science and technology.

a wrong assumption. For example, for decades we have thought that the Earth was the paradigm of habitability. We thought we were a miracle, that if just one factor out of the billions that support life on our planet were to change, everything would collapse like a “house of cards.” However, now a group of researchers from the University of California Riverside have discovered which is not so. A “small change” would be enough for the habitability of the Earth to be much better.

Animation Of Orbital Eccentricity

The “small change” in question. As you can see, I have used quotation marks twice when talking about that “small change”. There are already three. And the reason is that, although on a cosmological scale it is an almost inconsequential change, we are talking about Jupiter changes its orbit.

To better understand how the interactions of the planets work in the context of the solar system, Pam Vervoort and her team developed very detailed models from our local neighborhood so we could tweak small details and see what happened. And what happened, contrary to what everyone thought, is that if the gas giant modified its orbit a little and pushed ours, it would not worsen the habitability of the Earth: it would improve.

That is, if the Earth’s orbit were made a little more eccentric by the influx of Jupiter, many parts of the planet’s surface that are now below zero would heat up, would increase their temperature and would enter the habitable range. Siberia would become the new Caribbean (or something along those lines).

vdfdfsdf

E.Schwieterman et al.

don't call him "New Earth"call it "toxic mousetrap incompatible with complex life": rethinking habitable zones

And what is all this for? That is perhaps the most interesting question. That is, why are there people who dedicate themselves to seeing what would happen if the orbit of a huge planet changed a little? What are people at the University of California doing looking for ways to make the Earth’s surface warmer? The answer is: “for nothing that has to do directly with the Earth.” As we have explained many times, the way scientists understood habitability left a lot to be desired.

For years, what the media called the “new earth” was nothing more than a “toxic mousetrap incompatible with complex life.” The Riverside Scientists try to improve how we understand this and, above all, try to understand the influence that the entire planetary system has on the ability of a planet to support interesting biology. In other words, this study is not going to solve our lives, but it can help us find some out there.

Although they have passed 500 years since Nicolaus Copernicus launched a direct hook to classical celestial mechanics; although a little…

Although they have passed 500 years since Nicolaus Copernicus launched a direct hook to classical celestial mechanics; although a little…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.