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  1. #11
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    Nothing offensive about your thoughts at all Krish. I agree with you on ETs watching from somewhere in the Milky Way or further. It'll be one heck of a stretch of technology to be able to see much of anything, say like cities on Earth from 25,000 Ly distant. I'm not even sure that kind of magnification is possible.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Modlerbob View Post
    There has been much discussion about the number of stars with a planetary system and the, so far, disappointing number of finds that are outside of the conditions that we assume will support life. While planets that are too close to their star or too far from it are not candidates some of the planets that are in their stars habitable zone but are too big or are gas giants might just have moons that meet the criteria.

    Several Sci Fi writers have placed living beings on moons in their stories and it seems to me that when moons are added into the equations the number of likely candidates should expand greatly.
    I agree. I'm a big fan of moons. Their sheer numbers and variety (just in our own solar system) make for a much expanded field of possibility. After all, the best candidates for extra-terrestrial life at this time remain two solar system moons, Europa and Enceladus.
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  3. #13
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    As rare as I think extraterrestrial life and HLIs might be, nothing would be more fascinating than to see a sci fi like moon that looks like earth with rings...orbiting a gas giant. I actually did an image of such a place. The moon is in the foreground in this image and though the gas giant is blue, its not habitable for humans. This system orbits Tau Ceti in my graphic novel.

    http://www.astronomyforum.net/astron...-exomoon1.html

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    Surely rings wouldn't form around a moon?

    How about a moon that's been falling in towards the planet for a long time, so it's orbiting very close to the upper atmosphere? If (like our moon) it had stopped spinning and one side always faced the planet the tidal forces wouldn't tear it apart, and if it was orbiting a gas giant its gravity would cause a 'wake' in the planet's atmosphere.

    On the original topic: like I said before, we haven't found many 'earth like' or hospitable planets so far because we haven't had the technology to detect them rather than them not existing. Earth-like planets might turn out to be the most common, who knows? We're getting to the point where they're detectable now, so we'll know a lot more in the next decade.

    And if they are common? Perhaps water will be common too. And with those ingredients, perhaps life is common. If the natural progression of evolution includes higher intelligence, then that too will be fairly common. We can only detect it from radio waves so far, and if radio communication isn't a common form of communication (we've not had it for long on cosmological timescales and might replace it entirely soon, who knows) then we're unlikely to see it.

    For all we know, the universe could be packed with intelligent life communicating and travelling between the stars, and we just lack the right technology to get in touch.

    As for moons: it's possible, but much harder to detect. Worry about that if we don't find life on the earth-like planets first

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    Psonice: Surely rings wouldn't form around a moon?

    They might, they might not. With the continual surprises exoplanet research brings us...I wouldn't be surprised if a ringed moon wouldn't be one of them. It may be that moons with rings orbit closer as you say and that maybe there are more of this type of world.

    I define earthlike worlds with humanlike life as the really rare ones. I hope to be proven wrong and our exoplanet research finds them to be much more common than I'm currently anticipating. I probably won't live long enough to see it either way.

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  7. #16
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    How come there are ringed moons? If it happens by orbitting closer to the planet, the same case should be applicable to planets around the sun also. but here the farthest planets are having rings. Am I right or missing something?
    Krishnakumar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Krish View Post
    How come there are ringed moons? If it happens by orbitting closer to the planet, the same case should be applicable to planets around the sun also. but here the farthest planets are having rings. Am I right or missing something?
    I don't believe we've ever found ringed moons. I think we're just speculating as to why they shouldn't exist. (I can't see why there wouldn't be).
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  9. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krish View Post
    How come there are ringed moons? If it happens by orbitting closer to the planet, the same case should be applicable to planets around the sun also. but here the farthest planets are having rings. Am I right or missing something?
    No ringed moon has ever been found, in fact...no moon has ever been detected orbiting an exoplanet as yet. Were just beginning to be able to detect Earth sized worlds. It'll probaby be a decade before we can detect any moons. No moons in our solar system are known to have rings either.

    So for now, its anyones guess as to how far or close a ringed exomoon will be detected orbiting its host planet.

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    Earth doesn't have rings but it does have a halo of space junk and dead satellites. So maybe if we ever detect an exo-planet with a lot of junk orbiting it we can deduce that intelligent beings are responsible.
    Bob DeWoody

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    Quote Originally Posted by Modlerbob View Post
    Earth doesn't have rings but it does have a halo of space junk and dead satellites. So maybe if we ever detect an exo-planet with a lot of junk orbiting it we can deduce that intelligent beings are responsible.
    10s or 100s of years to go for getting that accuracy. may not happen in this century I think. But being an optimist, I would like to see that happen in my lifetime.
    Krishnakumar

 

 
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