Asteroids, not just a game of cosmic pinball.

Posted by on Nov 2, 2012 in Science | 0 comments

While our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of Hurricane Sandy, and our worries are with this election we thought we’d just take a break and  post something about science.  Science is cool.

I read this little gem on Io9′s site and I really enjoy reading io9 so I thought I’d share.

Basically the article says that our asteroid belt is just about as unique as life on Earth.  They think that the position, composition and density of the asteroid belt is critical for life to form on one of the inner planets.  They also think that Jupiter is pretty special in it’s position and how it helped form our solar system.  Jupiter not only protects the Earth from wandering comets by snatching them out of space with it’s massive gravity, it is responsible for our asteroid belt being just right for life to form and reform on Earth, leading to intelligence to get a foothold.  Now whether the planet thinks this is just dandy, given all of the ecological damage we’ve done and continue to do is another question, several actually.  But that’s the theory these researchers have put forth, that the asteroid belt is fairly unique, only 4% of systems have one like ours, and it is critical for life to form and evolve the way it did here on Earth.  And here we just thought our asteroid belt was only good for the occasional apocalypse and video game.

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