I want to explore the possibility of a planet that is extremely misshapen. If we were to extrapolate what we have observed from our solar system and the extra-solar planets discovered so far, we would have to be conservative about such a possibility because nothing of the sort has been discovered. Moreover, our understanding of physics tells us, all else equal, the more massive something is the more spherical it becomes (not a perfect sphere typically). This phenomenon is easily seen in asteroids since they are less massive than planets, they can take on a Siamese twin shape:
Itokawa Asteroid, discovered 1998 by LINEAR
Now if we were considering very small dwarf planets, this would be a piece of cake, because like asteroids, the mass can be small for misshapen bodies. However, I'm interested in Siamese twins that are earth-like. So with all of the aforementioned odds stacked against this idea, I still wonder if somewhere in the vast, vast universe there might be a freak accident of astronomical proportions that could allow for a planet to have a Siamese twin. A few ways I thought of to approach are below. The bold face denotes the part of the idea that I feel needs the most of a reality-check:
- the Siamese twin planets appears big, but have hollow cores, allowing for its mass to be small enough for the planets to be misshapen.
- the Siamese twin planet shape is maintained via equilibrium of forces. Something is pulling the planets apart at just the right amount against gravity for the Siamese twin shape to exist. Maybe a rogue, black-hole at just the right distance?
Question: Can any of my ideas for my Earth mass Siamese twin planets to take form be plausible? If you so desire, feel free to hypothesize your own set of "perfect storm" circumstances.
Success Metric: Create Earth mass Siamese twin bodies (can't really call them planets any more, because they are not round) that remain so for at least 100 million years (in other words, it doesn't have to be permanent). If the solution is statistically remote, that's ok. The key is just not violating any known laws of physics. Further Clarifications:
Mass: both twins have near Earth mass
Fusion Onset: can be at formation or later on
- Area of Fusion: equatorial region of planets
- Fusion Degree: configurable. Could be a slight join or a deep join. Quick reference in the diagram below:
- Other: Other things like Planet composition, nearby objects are entirely configurable