February 03, 2004
Atmospheric Disturbances

New Scientist is carrying this article summarizing the first discovery of an extra-solar planet losing carbon and oxygen as it passes in front of its sun. Unfortunately it's the wrong type of carbon and oxygen to be caused by life, but at 200 times the Earth's mass and orbiting its star eight times closer than Mercury, I'm not sure what sort of life might even exist. The upper atmosphere is said to be 10,000 degrees C!

One of the more interesting SF ideas I've come across is in David Niven's "Integral Trees". In it, a planet somewhat like this moves so quickly and dissolves so thoroughly that a sort of "smoke ring" of inhabitable gas is created circling the star. The implications of living in a place where there literally is no solid ground is interesting to say the least.

Posted by scott at February 03, 2004 04:41 PM

eMail this entry!

That would be _Larry_ Niven :-).


Posted by: Andy on February 4, 2004 02:02 PM

YAR! GAH! Never blog while on Benadryl! I was distracted by all the pretty colors! Yeah! That's it!

Posted by: scott on February 4, 2004 02:18 PM
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