Fear and Loathing on the Fringe
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No, we’re not touching down to investigate! It’s another nomad. No atmosphere. No heat. No magnetic shield. Life can’t exist in those conditions. What would be the point? Just add it to the data base! Then, prep for warp! We’re going home
Ship’s Log/ Capt. Rango Mackey, 3206.18 Galactic Time
(last entry received)
A rogue planet, also known as a nomad or orphan planet, is a planetary-mass which moves freely through the galaxy ~ possibly between galaxies ~ unfettered to a solar system or a star. Such worlds have been ejected from the planetary system where they formed. Recent estimates by scientists suggest that they exist by the billions in the Milky Way; there could be more rogue planets in our galaxy than stars!
Call me crazy (you wouldn’t be the first!) but that’s a scary thought! Bad enough, they can’t seem to track all the near-Earth asteroids ~which we know, since the Chelyabinsk Bolide took us by surprise on Feb. 15, 2013 slamming into Earth’s upper atmosphere at 42,900 mph with an impact equivalent to approximately 500 kilotons of TNT ~ about 30 times more energy than released from the Hiroshima atom bomb. It didn’t even really hit the Earth. It exploded in an air burst at a height of 18 miles, give or take ~ yet damaged or destroyed some 7000 buildings in 6 different cities, injuring some 1500 people.
Comets, being larger than asteroids travel even faster and are scarier yet. Now, they tell us that entire PLANETS zip around in space, most of them unseen/ untracked/ because unless they happen to reflect the sun they’re not even visible??
Well, the question here is not if one will hit us in the next few days or hours! And I hope not! I think (hope) they could “see” one coming even in the dark due to is influence on the orbits of the outer planets’ orbits. There is “Planet X” to think about.. but that’s another matter for another time. Planet X, now called Planet 9 if it exists, is supposedly a body in our own solar system orbitting the sun but at tremendous distance. The theory was discarded years ago but as with so many other things, has crept up to haunt us again… theoretically. You know: like the “nonexistent” water ice on Mars! LOL!
The question here is, Could life exist on, or possibly within, such lightless, sunless worlds? Captain Macky didn’t think so in the story up above… but he may have overlooked a possibility or two! Inside the planetoid ~ what’s this? THEY seem to be studying the EARTH! That can’t be good… he probably should have checked it out!
Custom planets/spaceship/stars and light-effects.
Scene inside the planet is a partial (much smaller) view of another science fiction piece I did.
Inspired by a recent episode of The Universe (“Our Place in the Milky Way”) on the Science Channel.