[ExI] Fleeting phase of planet formation discovered

Dan TheBookMan danust2012 at gmail.com
Thu May 25 20:26:27 UTC 2017

On Thursday, May 25, 2017 11:00 AM spike <spike66 at att.net> wrote:
>> http://www.nature.com/news/fleeting-phase-of-planet-formation-discovered-1.22039

>> I was hoping this wasn't based on simulations but actually detected by observation.
>> Interesting that this backs the accretion theory of lunar formation -- as
>> against the giant impact theory. >

> Dan simulations might be better than observation for figuring out how these
> things could happen.

I'm not so sure about that. I'm not against such simulations, but I think they must be tested against observations. I'm sure you agree. Otherwise, we just end up building models without ever finding out if these models are more than fun with computers. (Nothing wrong with fun with computers, but the point here is to advance our understanding of planetary formation.)

Also, I imagine, with ever more observations of solar systems birthing, we'll eventually capture something going through this phase. (That it lasts less than a million years, of course, lowers the odds of getting lucky before we have lots more observations in the bin.)

> I am pondering if this might explain what we are seeing in Tabby’s star: a
> huge synestia formed recently out at a Saturn-ish radius perhaps a few
> thousand Saturn-ring radius.

Would a synestia show the same light profile? How to independently verify this?

> If this is the right explanation, we won’t see any further dips of Tabby’s
> star for the next couple decades.  If it is wrong, we will see another dip
> in just a couple years from now, and we will again be puzzled at where the
> IR signature went.

I'm tilting toward something else and more mundane, but I'm not putting any money on my speculations. :)


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