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Thursday, November 28, 2019


Hello dear reader, three Japanese astronomers/astrophysicists just discovered that as "a natural consequence of the elementary processes of dust growth, [...] a new class of planets can be formed around supermassive black holes" (P)

Basically science just stated that planets, and therefore planetary systems, in theory can naturally form around black holes. 

But this dumb blog has a different story to tell 'bout this...

Planetary system formation around a black hole according to @sciencemug
That's how a planetary system really comes to exist around a black hole according to @sciencemug

[The black hole pic by Event Horizon Telescope is under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license (source: Wikimedia Commons); planets pics are Public Domain images (source: NASA via Picryl); golf flag pic is under Creative Commons Zero - CC0/Public Domain License (source: Peakpx); golf club pic is under Creative Commons 4.0 BY-NC License (source: Pngimg). All images adapted by @sciencemug]


A "Type III Civilization" is the most advanced type of civilization according to the I to III Kardashev scale.
Nikolai Kardashev was a Russian astrophysicist (1932-2019) author of the paper "Transmission of Information by Extraterrestrial Civilizations" (1) published on Soviet Astronomy AJ in 1964. In the paper Mr. K writes about the "distinguishing properties of artificial sources of cosmic radio-frequency emission" (1): basically the guy describes what are the characteristics needed, in terms of energy availability and type of transmissions, for successful communications to happen between galaxies (and their civilizations).
In his paper Mr. K comes up with a classification of civilizations that goes like this:
- Type I civilization has "a technological level close to the level presently attained on the Earth" (1).
- Type II civilization is "capable of harnessing the energy radiated by its own star (for example, the stage of successful construction of a "Dyson sphere" * (2)) (1).
- Type III civilization is "in possession of energy on the scale of its own galaxy" (1) (but apparently it's not in possession of a decent swing, hence, it sucks at cosmic golf...).

* Dude, if you don't know what a Dyson sphere be, well, you definitely don't like Star Trek or sci-fi in general... Anyway, Freeman J Dyson (born in 1923) is a British-American physicist who, in a paper published in 1960 on Science, writes that if "extraterrestrial intelligent beings exist and have reached a high level of technical development, one by-product of their energy metabolism is likely to be the large-scale conversion of starlight into far-infrared radiation" (2) and that it is reasonable to suppose that "within a few thousand years of its entering the stage of industrial development, any intelligent species should be found occupying an artificial biosphere which completely surrounds its parent star" (2). Finally dude Dyson concludes that the "most likely habitat for such beings would be a dark object, having a size comparable with the Earth's orbit, and a surface temperature of 200 deg. to 300 deg. Kelvin [(T-Kelvin=T-Celsius + 273.15... Oooh for The Mighty SI System Sake! Ok, ok, T-Kelvin=(T-Fahrenheit + 459,67) / 1,8 )]. Such a dark object would be radiating as copiously as the star which is hidden inside it, but the radiation would be in the far infrared, around 10 microns wavelength."(2).
There you go pal, that's the Dyson sphere.

P- Wada, K., Tsukamoto, Y., and Kokubo, E. (2019). Planet Formation around Supermassive Black Holes in the Active Galactic Nuclei. ApJ 886, 107.
1- Kardashev, N.S. (1964). Transmission of Information by Extraterrestrial Civilizations. SvA 8, 217.
2- Dyson, F.J. (1960). Search for Artificial Stellar Sources of Infrared Radiation. Science 131, 1667–1668.

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