Questions tagged [stars]

For questions about luminous spheres of plasma held together by their own gravity, generally comprised primarily of hydrogen and helium.

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What is the theoretical maximum number of habitable planets in one solar system?

In the DC comic book universe, the Vega System is a solar system around the star Vega (Alpha Lyrae), which is depicted as having dozens of habitable planets. While it seems to be an implausibly large ...
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Can a system of 10 planets be stable if star is not on the main sequence?

My star is 2.17 Solar masses. For narrative purposes, I decided this so it will collapse in the theoretical Quark star. Could such a big star that isn't on the main sequence (Because its an A type, ...
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How Far Can The Stars Ve and Vili Orbit The Main One, Odin?

In this solar system, there are three K-type main sequence stars, or "orange dwarves", named Odin, Vili and Ve. At the center of this solar system, Odin is 80% the mass of our sun. The middle star, ...
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How might star formation work in a universe similar to the one described in the orthogonal series?

In our universe, in order for a cloud of gas to collapse into a star it needs to release heat energy in the form of radiation, so that it can cool down enough to collapse into a star. I read what ...
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Hiding a solar system in a nebula

I have a planetary system with a yellow dwarf similar to our own Sun and three habitable planets. I want to hide this system from sight and long range scans in a nebula, a giant cloud of dust and gas ...
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How would our skies look if our sun was a white dwarf instead?

What I'm using your information for: My planet is small, has a thicker atmosphere than earth and it's orbiting a white dwarf. The main reason I chose it to be a white dwarf is that I read somewhere ...
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What would be the effects on a planet orbiting a shedding red giant?

In a sci-fi RPG I eventually intend to run for a couple of friends, I had the idea of them visiting ancient ruins on a planet orbiting a shedding red giant. Now, ignoring the problem of intelligent ...
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How soon can the first stars form?

Introduction In our universe, the cosmic microwave background was formed approximately 400,000 years after the Big Bang. It was hot, but within a few million years after the Big Bang, it would no ...
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Can you make a star from other gases, and how long would they last?

In my Conworld, the inhabitants have discovered a type of star they cannot identify. I would like it to be a star made not from just hydrogen and helium, like our sun and countless others. But my ...
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Plausibility of “diamond”-like crystal and/or mineral substances forming on a planet orbiting a dwarf star

Alright, so the primary inspiration for this is 55 Cancri e, the speculated carbon "diamond world" and to a degree, Nkllon, a planet in Star Wars that is essentially what Cancri is, but "confirmed" to ...
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How much damage would a cupful of neutron star matter do to the Earth?

Suppose we used SCP-261, the vending machine that produces anything, and ask for a cup of neutron star. The machine instantaneously produces this. Suppose also that the vending machine is located at ...
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Visibility of a Red Dwarf Companion Star

An interstellar traveller stands upon the surface of an alien planet beneath the light of an unfamiliar sun. The planet upon which he stands orbits one star of a binary system in which one is a G-...
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Use bomb to detonate a white dwarf?

Suppose there is a Sirius A based alien civilization, but their planet is heavily defended, so direct attack is useless. Could we use some kind of weapon to detonate the Sirius B and cause a disaster ...
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How can this habitable planet have a moon with a naturally occurring atmosphere?

Assuming the planet is earth-like, with more surface water and atmospheric oxygen, and within the habitable zone of a sun-like star, how can a moon orbiting this planet retain a thick atmosphere? The ...
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Effects of Red Dwarf CME (Flare) on Biological Life and Atmosphere

I have a planet circling an M-Class star (M3/M4). I'm trying to figure out what the effects of flaring on the planet's biosphere might be. Background: As some of you may know, M-class stars are ...
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Longest possible eclipse in double star system

I have a planetary system that consists of two close stars: A Sun-like star - small but bright A much larger, but much darker star (about 5-10 times larger) A habitable planet orbiting both of the ...
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What is the Habitable Zone of a Red Dwarf star?

This question is pretty straightforward: What is the minimum and maximum distance for a planet to be in the habitable zone of an average sized (not biggest, not smallest) Red Dwarf star?
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Distance between star systems

I'm writing a story that will eventually escalate from being focused on one planet to the entire star system that planet belongs to, and finally to a big story involving the two nearest star systems ...
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Planet Orbiting a Red Dwarf

I'm trying to create my planet orbiting a red dwarf, honestly I've thought other scenarios but it's like every answer opens new questions. I'll just say what I want my planet to be and I'd like your ...
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Can I arrange my stars in a tetrahedron?

Inspired by this question: Consider a trinary star system, in which the three stars are arranged in an xy plane and all revolving the same direction, equidistant from each other. The inward pull of ...
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Explaining a Low-Mass Brown Dwarf

Considering the well-established relationships between stellar mass, surface temp, and luminosity, how unusual would it be to find a star (or brown dwarf) that possesses about half the mass of an ...
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Is a solar system around a black hole possible?

Is it possible for there to be a "solar system" of sorts with a black hole and a few suns orbiting around it? Could that system be stable and (if so) would it be possible for some civilization(s) to ...
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How close from Earth could a wandering flare red dwarf star be without causing havoc?

Rewriting the question to clarify: The time and location is now in our current Earth. A wandering red dwarf flare star (like Wolf 359) is moving towards our Solar System. The question: How close could ...
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Purple plants on a planet orbiting a green star?

Before I continue, yes, green stars don't really exist visually. Although stars like the Sun are green stars, they appear white (and are known as yellow dwarfs) because it doesn't only emit green ...
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What is the minimum size for the Sun?

How small could our Sun be and still "burn" with nuclear fusion and emit the same spectrum of light and other radiation as the real Sun does? Edit: The goal is to have a small sun inside a huge ...
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How to navigate a ringed planet at night?

I'm working on a story set in an Earth-like world but with rings (say, proportionately similar to Saturn's). I'm trying to get a solid handle on how these rings would affect the sky. For the ...
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Could this moon of a gas giant orbiting a neutron star support life?

Making the following assumptions: 1. The three moons of the Gas Giant are safe enough distances from and massive enough not to pull each other apart or send themselves careening into the void. 2. ...
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Can a collision with a neutron star make a planet via the can-o-snakes method?

Simplistically, a neutron star is a celestial body with enormous mass crushed into a small volume. That crushing force is gravity and the result, one might think, is atoms packed much more closely ...
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How do you non-catastrophically reduce the mass of the Sun by half?

In my previous question, I asked how much mass the Sun would have to lose in order for Saturn's orbital velocity to be its escape velocity. The answer proved to be somewhat unexpected - when the Sun ...
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How would an advanced alien race go about preventing their sun from dying?

I'm currently designing an advanced alien race that has found a way to prevent its host star from dying. But I'm not sure how exactly would that happen. So my question is, "How could you prevent the ...
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Would it be possible to create an artificial iron star?

I ran a quick calculation, and the mass of iron required to form a black hole is on the order of 10^40kg. So, suppose that in my story there is this almost much iron available to somehow be brought ...
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Increased Luminosity in Stars

I'm trying to construct a solar system, and I'm toying with the idea that the planet capable of sustaining life was initially outside of the habitable zone, but the star's advanced age has caused the ...
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Would this simplex ternary system be stable?

I'm trying to make a trinary star system but I'm not sure how it would work. The primary star is an M0Ve star (red dwarf flare star). The orbits of the other two stars are slightly more complicated. ...
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Can my spaceship figure out its position using Cepheid Variables?

In my story, reasonably far in the future, an intrepid group of explorers are on the first manned mission to the Andromeda galaxy, travelling close to the speed of light. They slumbered in suspended ...
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A self-eclipsing orbital ring

A common, matter-efficient science-fiction habitat is a hollow cylinder or ring in space that is spun to simulate the pull of gravity on its interior surface. These habitats have been imagined as ...
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How can the Hertzsprung–Russell diagram be used in star building?

As you can probably guess from the title, I have some questions about the Hertzsprung–Russell diagram, especially how to use it to make plausible stars. Some questions: Can stars exist in the black ...
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How can I make a black dwarf star?

In response to a question about an asteroid filled with degenerate matter, Ender Look suggested that using matter from a black dwarf would be better than using matter from a white dwarf since black ...
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Visibility of second star in S-type system

So in my world there is a planet orbiting a star, which is in a far binary system with another star. Is there any formula to calculate when the distant star would be visible - times of year and/or day?...
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Dozens of Habitable Worlds in One System?

I want to know if this is physically possible. So at first I thought I was nuts. Then I started reading about Hill Radii, and googled left and right. Turns out a Hill Sphere is the region around an ...
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How to estimate a star's heliopause?

Is it possible to calculate/estimate the size of a star's heliosphere? If so, how? I am working on a semi-near future, sci-fi novel. As part of the technology base, humans are able to travel between ...
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How many habitable planets can I fit into the habitable zone of a Sun-like star and still be stable? [duplicate]

The habitable planets will be very similar in size to earth and are on separate orbits orbiting a Sun-like star exactly the size of our own Sun. How many habitable planets can I fit into the habitable ...
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Optimal arrangement for habitable zones?

So, here's my issue. My setting's central conceit is that a myriad of human societies developed at relatively concurrent times across a large system separated by only a few light-hours. (There are, of ...
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Could the Sun be born again?

About 5 billion years from now, the Sun will begin to swell into a red giant. This will cause some problems, because life on a planet orbiting a red giant is hard. Even if Earth isn't engulfed by the ...
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Can two stars orbit each other but each have their own planets in stable orbits?

I'm aware that 'tatooine' worlds don't make good habits for planets, normally. From what I've read, either a planet has to orbit one star really closely, or orbit both stars from a really long ...
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How to make an Earth with 27 suns work [duplicate]

Viability of Many Suns This is the first of a thread of related posts on a hypothetical alternate universe/Light Plane. Other posts from this thread are here: How To Make an Earth with 27 Suns Work,...
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A K-Type Binary Dawn/Dusk in the Equator

In this alternate scenario, Earth is the third planet in a binary star system. One star is a K-type main sequence star--or "orange dwarf"--that has 80% the mass of a G-type main sequence star--or "...
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Would it be possible to farm the energy from pulsars?

From what I can tell, pulsars emit light in beams from the poles of the pulsar. Would it be possible to construct something to get energy from a pulsar's beams of radiation? Or is this as idiotic of ...
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Earth Orbits a K-Type Star. What Would the Visual Scenery Look Like?

To clarify on the title, K-type main-sequence stars--shortened as "orange dwarves"--are subjects of excitement for astronomers and astrobiologists. Why? They emit enough radiation to provide a ...
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Is a supernova powerful to destroy the other star in a binary system?

So, you have the big bad race, whose extermination method is basically to force stars to go supercritical via the power of handwavium. You can assume 1 solar mass for each, but you can change it if ...
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Life in the water/snow line of a protoplanetary accretion disc?

So I was reading this article recently, titled Stellar Outburst Brings Water Snow Line into View: http://www.eso.org/public/news/eso1626. In short it's about a protoplanetary accretion disc around a ...