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Science and Technology "Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known." - Carl Sagan.

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Old July 10 2013, 11:35 PM   #1
Mysterion
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Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

This is a very spiffy website: http://phl.upr.edu/projects/habitabl...atalog/results

This could be a very useful thing for the astronomically curious as well as SF authors looking for someplace to put that next alien race or colony.
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Old July 11 2013, 04:05 AM   #2
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

They found planets around Tau Ceti? I didn't even know that! I'm behind the times! Although I checked SolStation and it seems to say the identification is still tentative.
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Old July 11 2013, 11:29 AM   #3
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

I think we still have to keep an open mind on this stuff, the goldilocks zone might be a little too perfect. NASA has still to yet rule out if Mars and if Jupiter's Moon Europa are dead worlds. Forms of life have been found miles deep in the colds of Antarctica, found in hot thermal vents under extreme pressure at the bottom of the ocean and forms of life have been found in decaying Russian nuclear radioactive submarines.
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Old July 11 2013, 04:35 PM   #4
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

TheMasterOfOrion wrote: View Post
I think we still have to keep an open mind on this stuff, the goldilocks zone might be a little too perfect. NASA has still to yet rule out if Mars and if Jupiter's Moon Europa are dead worlds. Forms of life have been found miles deep in the colds of Antarctica, found in hot thermal vents under extreme pressure at the bottom of the ocean and forms of life have been found in decaying Russian nuclear radioactive submarines.
The other thing of note is that MARS has a 64% rating of being Earth like. So is this scale logarithmic or something because what does 50% mean, their gas planets?

I would also state that Earth's orbit and stability isn't really that friendly to life either and as you said it may be possible that just because a planet is in the habitable zone it is really habitable.
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Old July 11 2013, 05:30 PM   #5
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

Lots of interesting information in that link! I like that chart further down that classifies potentially habitable planets based on their temperature:
Thermoplanet (slightly hotter) - Class T
Psychroplanet (slightly colder) - Class P
Mesoplanet (similar to Earth) - Class M (!)
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Old July 11 2013, 07:29 PM   #6
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

ThunderAeroI wrote: View Post
TheMasterOfOrion wrote: View Post
I think we still have to keep an open mind on this stuff, the goldilocks zone might be a little too perfect. NASA has still to yet rule out if Mars and if Jupiter's Moon Europa are dead worlds. Forms of life have been found miles deep in the colds of Antarctica, found in hot thermal vents under extreme pressure at the bottom of the ocean and forms of life have been found in decaying Russian nuclear radioactive submarines.
The other thing of note is that MARS has a 64% rating of being Earth like. So is this scale logarithmic or something because what does 50% mean, their gas planets?

I would also state that Earth's orbit and stability isn't really that friendly to life either and as you said it may be possible that just because a planet is in the habitable zone it is really habitable.
The only thing meant by habitable zone is that temperatures are such that liquid water may exist. That does not mean liquid water is in fact present, that life exists there, nor that life cannot exist elsewhere. But as a beginning point, it makes a lot of sense to start here since soon we will be able to analyse the atmosphere of some of these planets. We do not have a game plan to be able to do things like look under the ice of moons outside of this solar system.
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Old July 11 2013, 08:51 PM   #7
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

^Right. Science isn't about making absolute statements about everything that can ever exist anywhere. It's about making conclusions and predictions about what we can observe and measure. Although, granted, calling it a "habitable zone" instead of a "liquid water zone," say, is a bit misleading.

Then again, when they say "habitable," they don't mean habitable to humans, just potentially habitable for some kind of life as we know it, even microbes.
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Old July 11 2013, 11:52 PM   #8
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

B.J. wrote: View Post
Lots of interesting information in that link! I like that chart further down that classifies potentially habitable planets based on their temperature:
Thermoplanet (slightly hotter) - Class T
Psychroplanet (slightly colder) - Class P
Mesoplanet (similar to Earth) - Class M (!)
I dont see that classification outlined. Where is it?
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Old July 12 2013, 03:27 PM   #9
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

^ Fourth picture up from the bottom in the OP's link, in the section titled "Current and Pending Potential Habitable Exoplanets".
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Old July 14 2013, 12:51 AM   #10
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

ah, thanks. I looked over the little legand.
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Old July 14 2013, 11:46 PM   #11
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

So here's a question. Let's say we find a planet that has its own carbon-based life. Even if it was within the habitable range for humans, could humans ever live on that planet? Or would the threat of microbial nasties that we had no immunity to make that possible?

Or would our presence inevitably disrupt the existing ecosystem there? Would it be possible for us to live there without bringing our own microbial nasties?

I've never really thought about that--I've always assumed that landing on an "M-class" planet wouldn't quite as cavalier as Star Trek, but that humans would more or less be able to survive there. Is this a foolish assumption?
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Old July 15 2013, 12:23 AM   #12
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

Shatnertage wrote: View Post
So here's a question. Let's say we find a planet that has its own carbon-based life. Even if it was within the habitable range for humans, could humans ever live on that planet? Or would the threat of microbial nasties that we had no immunity to make that possible?
That depends. We probably wouldn't be in danger from their viruses, since they might have a different genetic medium than DNA, or at least one following a different protein-coding "language." But bacteria could be a problem if our biochemistry is compatible enough with theirs that they could thrive in our bodies. And that's pretty much a given if we could thrive in the planet's environment. The safer we are from a planet's bacteria, the less suitable the planet would be for us to inhabit at all.
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Old July 15 2013, 03:02 PM   #13
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

So what's our best bet if we're looking for a planet to colonize? Something that's in the Goldilocks zone but has no life?
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Old July 15 2013, 03:11 PM   #14
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

Our best bet is finding a way of putting people into stasis for long periods of time.
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Old July 15 2013, 05:55 PM   #15
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Re: Habitable Exoplanet Catalog

Deckerd wrote: View Post
Our best bet is finding a way of putting people into stasis for long periods of time.
I wonder if someone with a lethal disease would vounteer for this?

In June 2005 scientists at the University of Pittsburgh's Safar Center for Resuscitation Research announced they had managed to place dogs in suspended animation and bring them back to life, most of them without brain damage, by draining the blood out of the dogs' bodies and injecting a low temperature solution into their circulatory systems, which in turn keeps the bodies alive in stasis. After three hours of being clinically dead, the dogs' blood was returned to their circulatory systems, and the animals were revived by delivering an electric shock to their hearts. The heart started pumping the blood around the frozen body, and the dogs were brought back to life.[3]
On 20 January 2006, doctors from the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston announced they had placed pigs in suspended animation with a similar technique. The pigs were anaesthetized and major blood loss was induced, along with simulated - via scalpel - severe injuries (e.g. a punctured aorta as might happen in a car accident or shooting). After the pigs lost about half their blood the remaining blood was replaced with a chilled saline solution. As the body temperature reached 10 °C (50 °F) the damaged blood vessel was repaired and the blood was returned.[4] The method was tested 200 times with a 90% success rate. "Doctors claim suspended animation success". The Sydney Morning Herald. 20 January 2006. Retrieved 10 October 2006.
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