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Anonymous asked in Science & MathematicsAstronomy & Space · 8 months ago

Is our planet relatively young compared to other planets?

I understand there are billions of stars in just our milky galaxy alone and I wonder if there are planets that's much older and evolution that started much earlier as well.  I'm not saying andvanced extraterrestrials have to exist, but if there are planets with extraterrestrials as advanced as us or more advanced, they could be searching for other planets as well.  I think hundreds of years from now, maybe we will find an answer because if we don't look for other planets that's suitable for life, we could end up extinct like the dinosaurs....


@daniel g, that's fascinating, I wonder if everything from earth is actually from earth or if microrgansims came down to earth from space rock.

Update 2:

@ReductioAdAstronomicus, why would the search for life be tiresome? I don't see the harm in finding out how the origins of life began on other planets, it could explain the origins of life on our planet as well.

13 Answers

  • 8 months ago
    Favourite answer

    I like your thinking

    Our Sun began shining an estimated 4.5 Billion years ago

    The Solar System followed suit

    Given that the Universe is an estimated 13.7 Billion Old since the Big Bang

    Given the number of Millions of years before the Cosmic soup became Matter and began to form Stars, then Galaxies, there has been around a Nine Billion year Hiatus for Stars and Planets to form elsewhere, even in our own Milky Way

    It is possible that somewhere else, an Evolution has brought forward a Civilisation a lot longer before us

    Either they could be Extinct. or a lot further advanced than us

    Even a Type three Civilisation

    The highest any Civilisation could feasibly go

    Masters of their own Galaxy

    It is a shame that Dinosaurs had to go extinct

    But imagine how they would have evolved, had fate not been turned against them

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    Source(s): Wow !!
  • 8 months ago

    In one sense, it is "young". This solar system is a presumed third-generation system (meaning that the solar system is not old and derives from the remains of a second-generation star that died). The problem is that the first-generation systems lacked the heavy elements that come from dying stars, so, for the most part, "life" probably did not become complex until having those elements, requiring at least a second-generation system. 4.5 billion years is not "old" but isn't "young" either. It is quite conceivable that complex life could have developed out there, somewhere, and even come and gone already. There is an open question as to how common life actually is, and how common advanced life is (in the sense of "Intelligent" life with ability and drive to control the environment like man does). We simply lack the information required to know the answer to that question of probability.

    It is a complicated issue with lots of conjecture. I think most people that concern themselves with the question have a high degree of confidence that "Intelligent" life has formed elsewhere and will still arise elsewhere, but there is no proof of that as yet.

    Relative to the age of the universe, the earth is not old, it is "young", but relative to a specific solar system, I would call it old at 4.5 billion years. That is, there is no primary reason to require 4.5 billion years to see advanced life develop on a planet. There are issues that suggest it is probably favored to take at least 3 billion years, though, depending on the evolution of the planet and its star system in detail.

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  • Anonymous
    8 months ago

    Well, actually all stars from now on are now 3rd generation stars, whether they were born billions of years ago, now, or billions of years from now. The star generation system is actually about a similarity in composition, rather than actual time periods they were born. First generation stars were only formed from the Big Bang materials, hydrogen and helium. They went supernova and created various of the heavier elements (astronomical metals). The 2nd generation were then formed from those 1st generation remnants, which included the metals. The 2nd generation also went supernova and created even more metals, for the 3rd generation. The terrestrial planets probably couldn't form until the 3rd generation started, and probably not until a much later sub-generation of 3rd generation stars. There is a possibility that we might be one of the earliest civilizations in the universe, that's why we haven't seen any other aliens or any clue about any other aliens, we just might be one of the elder races.

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  • 8 months ago

    We do not know much at all about any other planets except those in our solar system. It is unknown whether we will ever be able to find out much about other planets. Quips you may read in pop-science about the future state of technology are only speculations. All the planets in our solar system appear to be the same age.

    I do hope you realise that there is far more to astronomy than the increasingly tiresome "search for life". Speculations about life up in space are best left for science fiction. Questions about life and it's evolution are best directed to biologists, as they are the experts in biological processes, it is outside the scope of astronomy.

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  • 8 months ago

    No. The ages of main sequence stars varies a lot and we can assume the planets in their systems are quite often older and quited often younger than Earth. In fact there are probably more younger planets because of the mishaps which may destroy them such as unstable orbits.

    • One would think that the recent discovery of two interstellar comets/asteroids would hint as to what type of mishaps befall most planetary systems fairly quickly. It seems we have been the lucky exception which managed to "dodge the bullets".

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  • 8 months ago

    The extinction of humanity is quite likely. Older civilizations elsewhere may have been short-lived, either exhausting the resources of their planets or committing suicide via warfare.

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  • Clive
    Lv 7
    8 months ago

    It is estimated that our solar system is approximately third generation. To have any elements other than gases for it to be made from, there must have been other stars previously that have already "died" to create the other elements, or rocky planets like ours couldn't be here. So other civilisations that are older than us are entirely likely.

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  • cosmo
    Lv 7
    8 months ago

    Yes. The Milky Way galaxy existed for 8 billion years before the Solar System was formed, and many billions of star systems (with planets) formed billions of years earlier than the Sun. The atoms in your body are the result of about five generations of massive stars forming, producing elements heavier than helium, then blowing that material back into the interstellar medium.

    It is therefore surprising that there are no signs of civilizations that are billions of years more advanced than our own, with god-like technology capable of modifying stars and planets.

    • Maybe instead of being surprised, we should see the fact as telling us something very profound, and then exploring it's ramifications. Rather like what happened with the "surprising" result of the Michelson-Morley experiment.

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  • 8 months ago

    Our solar system is about 4.5 billion years old, the galaxy itself is about 13 billion.

    So our planet is relatively young.

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  • 8 months ago

    Well, it is estimated over 400 million stars with planets, just in our galaxy, so other forms of life we know is more probable than possible. any life with a level of intelligence, the likelihood goes down. One of the biggest reasons we have no proof of is distance. The closest sun to ours is 4.2 light years away. Not likely we will have spacecraft faster than 1 million miles an hour for 300 years, even at that, it is centuries to get there. We have had radio a bit over 100 years, even the first sending into space

    that signal wont even reach half the galaxy for another 50,000 years.

    As for life 'out there', the best my microscopic knowledge can fathom, might be something like water bears/moss piggies. For the harsh environments they can survive, certainly didn't evolve or adapt here on earth, and just might be the ETs we been hunting for under our nose. these tiny cute 8 legged critters will survive the end of the world as we know it

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