Scientists believe that some stars can be up to seven habitable planets
The results of the simulation, which was conducted by American scientists, showed that some stars can be up to seven potentially habitable planets. The paper was published in the journal Astronomical Journal.
The search for life in outer space, scientists tend to restrict the so-called habitable zone — the region around a star where orbiting it planets may be liquid water needed to sustain life in the form we know it.
The researchers, headed by astrobiology Stephen Kane (Stephen Kane) from the University of California in riverside on the example of our nearest planetary systems TRAPPIST-1 created a conditional model of the system of planets of various sizes revolving around their stars. The algorithm took into account the gravitational force between the planets over millions of years.
Star TRAPPIST-1 — red dwarf, the size of which is comparable to the size of Jupiter. Of seven planets, known to date, three earth-like planets are in the habitable zone.
"It made me think about the maximum number of inhabited planets that can have a star, and why our stars have only one planet" — presented in the press release of the University of California-riverside the words of Kane.
The simulation results showed that some stars can support up to seven planets with liquid water, and for a star like the Sun there can be a maximum of six.
"If more than seven, they will be too close to each other and begin to destabilize the orbits of each other," the scientist said.
In the next step the authors found out why the Solar system is only one inhabited planet, if they can be six. It turned out that it's all in the Jupiter, whose mass is two and a half times the mass of all other planets in the Solar system combined.
"He has a great influence on the habitability of our system, because Jupiter is massive and disrupts the orbits of other planets," explains Kane.
Digital constructions it follows that the maximum number of planets in the habitable zone is possible, if their orbits are stable and close to ideal circular. Then the planet will be able long to remain at a close distance from each other.
It is known only a single planetary system with such parameters. The authors plan to purposefully look for stars surrounded by a tight ring of planets of small size. These stars will be their main goals when working in the project NASA HabEx (Habitable Exoplanet Observatory Observatory habitable exoplanets).
In the article they write about what already has identified one such star Beta Canes venatici (β CVn), which is very close, just at the distance of 27 light years from Earth. In its planetary system, there are giants like Jupiter, and it can be expected that in the habitable zone will be few earth-like planets.
Future research will also include the creation of new models, including for the study of the chemistry of the atmospheres of planets in the habitable zones of other star systems.
The authors believe that they create the model may also be useful for describing the evolutionary development of the Solar system and Earth.