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Author Topic: What would have to change atmospherically to have a triangular shaped planet?  (Read 4310 times)

Offline Karen W.

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The following posts were split from this topic:
http://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/index.php?topic=24232.msg263713#msg263713
To form this new topic!


WELL PLANETS ARE ROUND OR CIRCULAR IN SHAPE...SO I THOUGHT WHAT IF, AND IF SO WHAT WOULD IT BE LIKE.."NEIL THOUGHT IT A GOOD QUESTION SO THERE YOU ARE.

Yep.. That would be cool I wonder what we would look like on a triangular planet... would our appearance be different due also to the difference in the gravitational pull I would expect there to be if it were triangular?
« Last Edit: 14/07/2009 13:40:06 by Karen W. »


 

Offline neilep

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Yep.. That would be cool I wonder what we would look like on a triangular planet... would our appearance be different due also to the difference in the gravitational pull I would expect there to be if it were triangular?

This is a good question mam,

Say it was actually possible to have the planet as a 3d triangle !...it's worth getting some of the klevur bods here to postulate what life would be like....
 

Offline Chemistry4me

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Some people would weigh a lot more than others, they might also be shorter.
 

Offline neilep

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It would be quite freaky at the pointy ends !!
 

Offline Chemistry4me

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Yes, you might just find yourself floating off into space somewhere.
 

Offline Karen W.

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Yes, you might just find yourself floating off into space somewhere.

That might be a problem and what about the oxygen.. how much would that have been changed?
 

Offline Karen W.

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It would be quite freaky at the pointy ends !!

Maybe but cool! Pivot around on points!
 

Offline Don_1

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The ancient Egyptians believed that all life emerged from a pyramid. Are you suggesting they could have been right?
 

Offline Karen W.

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No... I am merely wondering what would have to be in place to create a triangular planet.. actually any different shaped planet! And if the atmosphere and gravitational effects were two drastically change what those effects might do to the shape of an existing planet as well as a newly forming one? Purely a fun Hypothetical sci fi kind of question.. ok?
 

Offline LeeE

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First of all, the shape of gravity wouldn't match the shape of the planet.  Although the shape of gravity on a triangular planet (let's assume a triangular prism for the sake of simplicity) wouldn't be (nearly) spherical, as it is on Earth, most of the mass would still be concentrated around the center of the prism, so as C4M says, some people would weigh more than others.

If we pretend, for the moment, that the sides were perfectly smooth and there was no atmosphere, a ball released at the top of one of the points would roll 'down' to the center of the face and then 'up' the other side.  It's path would be straight, however.

An atmosphere, and any water, would follow the shape of gravity.
 

Offline Karen W.

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Oooh thats a weird thought!

Some people would weigh a lot more than others, they might also be shorter.

C4M why would they be shorter?
 

Offline Karen W.

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First of all, the shape of gravity wouldn't match the shape of the planet.  Although the shape of gravity on a triangular planet (let's assume a triangular prism for the sake of simplicity) wouldn't be (nearly) spherical, as it is on Earth, most of the mass would still be concentrated around the center of the prism, so as C4M says, some people would weigh more than others.

If we pretend, for the moment, that the sides were perfectly smooth and there was no atmosphere, a ball released at the top of one of the points would roll 'down' to the center of the face and then 'up' the other side.  It's path would be straight, however.

An atmosphere, and any water, would follow the shape of gravity.



Lee could you draw me a diagram to make that easier for me to grasp..cause I do not get how the water would run back up the other side?

There is no atmosphere right...meaning? Lack of oxygen carbondioxide or other gases?I need the kindergarten version here!..LOL

 

Offline Soul Surfer

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You can only have triangular (or more accurately tetrahedral)objects that are small once they get more than a few hundred miles across the self gravity forces the materials into the more stable shape which is spherical. If such a tetrahedral planet existed  The atmosphere which is fluid will adopts a basically spherical shape with an exponential fall of pressure with height above the surface and so would "pool" at the points closest to the centre of gravity in the middles of the four triangular faces of the tetrahedron while the points which are like very high mountains on the earth would virtually stick out into space.

If such a structure could be stable and inhabited you could have four completely isolated ecosystems with effectively disc-world properties.  it would feel like you were in a bowl and the hills got steeper as you went away from the centre.  you wouldn't fall off the edge you would need space suits to climb the mountain to get over the very steep "cliff" to reach the other part of the community.
 

Offline Karen W.

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Wow now that is kinda interesting! Very interesting! Thanks Ian!
 

Offline LeeE

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Hi Karen.  I said a ball would roll back up the other side, not water.  As I said, water would follow the shape of gravity, which would more or less be the shape of a lobate sphere (roughly spherical but with lobes).

The ball behaviour would be even more interesting with a true tetrahedral planet as it would be rolling from an apex to a base.
 

Offline Karen W.

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Hi Karen.  I said a ball would roll back up the other side, not water.  As I said, water would follow the shape of gravity, which would more or less be the shape of a lobate sphere (roughly spherical but with lobes).

The ball behaviour would be even more interesting with a true tetrahedral planet as it would be rolling from an apex to a base.

Your right.. sorry I meant the ball!LOL

For some reason I am not catching on without diagrams...
 

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