Rogue Planets

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Message boards : Science (non-SETI) : Rogue Planets

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Profile Bob DeWoody
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Message 1165701 - Posted: 27 Oct 2011, 5:23:22 UTC

Several years ago when it was thought that very few stars had planetary systems the idea of rogue planets seemed at best outlandish. But now that it is believed that a high percentage of stars have a planetary system I wonder what becomes of the planets that survive the death of a star. Does the remnant of the star have enough gravity to keep it's planets in tow or do they slowly drift away from their dead parent. If this is so and since the sun is a fourth or fifth generation star it seems to me that there ought to be a good number of unattached planets in the voids between stars. Also if they are out there could we ever detect one?

I doubt that one would be a likely candidate as a home for ET but who knows?
Bob DeWoody

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Profile ML1
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Message 1165733 - Posted: 27 Oct 2011, 12:39:55 UTC - in response to Message 1165701.
Last modified: 27 Oct 2011, 12:42:09 UTC

Our Voyager and Pioneer spacecraft can be considered 'rogue' in that they have been flung out of our solar system due to a gravitational sling-shot effect.

There must be a proportion of objects from all solar systems that have close encounters that similarly have them flung out into the universe.

As with the 'game' of the Drake equation, the guess is for what proportion...

Space is so vast that we may never encounter any rogue objects from other solar systems. (However, our solar system is made up of the material of other previous stars.)

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Profile Ryan Rodney
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Message 1169319 - Posted: 9 Nov 2011, 4:25:40 UTC - in response to Message 1165701.

There probably are lots of them flying around out there. But I doubt we'll ever find one. It would be a bit like looking for a piece of pollen in the ocean using a cotton ball.

And while it's true that life is extremely unlikely, we can't totally rule it out. If Jupiter got flung out into space Io would still be hot, since its heat comes from tidal effects. It's possible that somewhere in this giant universe of ours something like that has happened.

Message boards : Science (non-SETI) : Rogue Planets

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