Now we are back from our trip around our Solar System I don’t know about you but it has been clear to me that there is nowhere else in our Solar System that can sustain life like Earth. Let’s take another look at other parameters that must exist to foster life on our small pale blue dot which we call home (after Carl Sagan). I have only singled out a few. There are many more.
In 1966 Carl Sagan and Iosef Schklovskii did research to estimate the number of planets in the universe capable of supporting life. They determined that it takes a certain set of parameters to make it possible for a planet to support life. The planet has to be located at just the right distance from its star to provide the minimal conditions for life. Working with just these two parameters they estimated that 0.001% of all stars could have a planet capable of supporting advanced life. Subsequent evidence gathered since 1966 has shown that the above researchers grossly overestimated the range of suitable star types and the range of suitable planetary distances and types. They also ignored a host of other parameters like:
This table comes from Hugh Ross’ book – The Creator and The Cosmos pp 138-141.
Apart from all of the parameters listed in the table above, there must be constancy. A change in the distance from the sun in Earth’s case would wipe out all life on our planet. Earth is delicately poised between a runaway freeze and a runaway evaporation of its water. It seems that climate change is a big deal after all. There are many other factors to consider. To cover them all, one would need to write a book. I won’t; there are many books out there for you to read.
Suffice to say we have taken a look over the last weeks at the possibility of life on the planets around us. It might interest you to know that only nine planets have been detected in the universe and one has been demoted. One of you wrote to ask if I was going to cover Pluto. As you can see the answer is no. Furthermore, the stellar bodies around a planet influence the possibility of life on any one planet. We have seen that as we have looked at the planets in our solar system. We have concluded that only earth has all the factors which sustains life as we know it. Well I guess strictly speaking, you haven’t concluded that because I have had no input from most you, but I have reached that conclusion. Hugh Ross writes, “These factors (those listed above and more) seem to indicate that the galaxy, the sun, Jupiter, Saturn, the earth and the moon in addition to the universe have undergone divine design.” Everything about our universe shouts God. Regarding the millions of dollars spent by the US Govt on SETI, Senator William Proxmire says, “We would be far wiser to spend the money looking for intelligence in Washington.” [DC that is].
Next Nugget I will investigate a related topic that absolutely fascinates me.