One of our readers sent us the following question:
Well, let’s look at the orbit of each of the planets as a potential location for the Earth and try to imagine what happens. We’ll start with Mercury and move in order of distance from the Sun. For simplicity of reasoning, we will assume that only the orbits coincide, while the period of rotation of the planet around its axis will remain equal to 24 hours.
First of all, we need to understand what the temperature will be on each of these imaginary Earths. To do this, we will use the following formula:
Mercury is the planet closest to the Sun. If the Earth were at such a distance from the Sun, then it would be hot on our planet. Very hot. The equilibrium temperature of Zemlercury will be 137 ° C. Obviously, at this temperature, the oceans will boil and evaporate, the atmosphere will be replenished with a significant amount of water vapor, which is a greenhouse gas, which will lead to an increase in the average temperature on the planet to about 200 ° C, making it impossible to have any highly developed life on the planet.
One could also take into account the greater eccentricity of the orbit of Mercury, as well as the loss of atmosphere from the solar wind, but it is so clear that Zemlercury would be an uninhabited planet.
If you place the Earth in the orbit of Venus, then the temperature on such a planet will be significantly higher than on Earth. The equilibrium temperature is 27 ° C, i.e. taking into account the greenhouse effect, the average surface temperature will be about 60 ° C. The oceans won’t boil at this temperature, but they will evaporate much more actively. The polar caps will melt, which, firstly, will increase the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere, and on the other — will reduce the amount of reflected sunlight. On the other hand, an increase in water vapor in the atmosphere can lead to the appearance of dense clouds enveloping the entire planet, which can slightly lower the surface temperature.
If Zemner manages to avoid the uncontrolled greenhouse effect, then it may well remain inhabited, although not all terrestrial organisms will be able to adapt to life on such a planet, which in this case will nevertheless become much hotter, and also significantly increase the humidity. At the same time, climatic zones will probably remain on the planet, and if life in the equatorial regions will apparently be impossible in any scenario, then the regions closer to the poles may well be more or less comfortable for life.
If we put the Earth in the place of Mars, then, as in the case of Venus, the conditions on the planet will be on the verge of possible habitability. The equilibrium temperature of Zemlyars will be -66 ° C.
This will lead to a significant increase in the polar caps, which on the one hand will increase the amount of reflected sunlight, and on the other — will reduce the content of water vapor in the atmosphere. This will lead to the fact that the average temperature on the planet will be about -40 ° C.
With this average temperature around the equator, conditions can still be favorable for life. However, it should be understood that with a significant decrease in the area of oceans and forests, the number of plants and phytoplankton participating in photosynthesis will also significantly decrease. This can cause a critical drop in oxygen levels in the atmosphere.
Another problem may be a decrease in the level of solar radiation, which will reduce the frequency of mutations and slow down evolutionary processes and, as a result, make it difficult for terrestrial organisms to adapt to Earth-Artian conditions. Yet, despite all of the above, in our opinion, Zemlyars has the best chances of staying inhabited.
In Jupiter’s orbit, the Earth will most certainly be uninhabited. The equilibrium temperature at this distance will be -161 ° C. The oceans will freeze, moreover, it is very likely that even carbon dioxide in the atmosphere will freeze, as well as all water vapor, which will significantly reduce the greenhouse effect.
As a result, the average surface temperature will be about -140 ° C. There is a small chance that in the equatorial region the temperature will sometimes rise slightly above zero and reservoirs may form for a short time from melted liquid water, but there will be no permanent reservoirs, and as a result, life will definitely not exist.
At the same time, in theory, people can still live on the surface of Zepiter inside specially equipped heated settlements. Really why?
It is also worth adding that there are quite a few different objects in the orbit of Jupiter. Firstly, these are the moons of Jupiter, of which, for a minute — 79, in addition — the Trojan and Achaean asteroids of Jupiter. In the absence of such a massive body as Jupiter, the orbits of these bodies are destabilized and Zepiter will be very lucky if he avoids collisions with them in the long term.
With Saturn, the story is somewhat similar to Jupiter, with the only difference that the equilibrium temperature on its surface is -190 ° C, which is close to the boiling point of oxygen (-182.96 ° C) and nitrogen (-195.75 ° C).
The atmosphere will most likely disappear, the appearance of liquid water even sometimes on the surface will be completely ruled out, but instead, oceans of liquid nitrogen and oxygen may appear.
Uranus and Neptune are even farther from the Sun, but the conditions on nah will be almost identical.
In both cases, the oceans and the atmosphere will completely freeze, and life on the planet will become impossible.