Building a Miniture Solar System – Part 3

D is for Droid


esigning a Miniature Solar System Part 3


A Real Worlds Example – Gliese 677 C

A team of astronomers announced in June of 2013 the possible existence of three planets in the habitable zone of a star Gliese 677C.

By taking new observations of the star along with using a more fine-tuned analysis of previously collected data they were able to determine that GJ 677C had at least five planets with some indications of a two other planets orbiting the star. The more interesting result is that three of the confirmed planets are within the habitable zone for this star.

The articles can be found here

A dynamically-packed planetary system around GJ 667C with three super-Earths in its habitable zone

A nearby star with three potentially habitable worlds

Gliese 667 is a triple star system in the constellation Scorprius. In the typically naming conventions used for stars by astronomers, the individual stars of the system are named A, B and C. The A and B stars are both K type dwarfs that are about 70% the size of the Sun. The A and B stars orbit each with in a fairly eccentric orbit where they get as close as 5 AU then separate out to a distance of 20 AU.

For my purpose of trying to design a miniature solar system the third star “C” is more interesting.

Gliese 667 C is an M type red dwarf that has one third the mass of the Sun. It orbits the other two stars of the system at a current distance of 230 AU.

Below is the basic data for the star

GJ 667C

Mass KG                          6.16451E+29
Mass % of Sun               0.31
Radius % of Sun            0.4

Distance Parsecs          6.8
Distance Light Years  22.178
Right Ascension           17 H 18 M 57 S
Declination                    31 Deg 44 M 39 S
Apparent Magnitude 10.25
Absolute Magnitude  11.03
Spectral Class                M1.5V
Age (estimated)           2 to 10 Billion years. (In other words it is somewhere on the main sequence)
Habitable Zone            .11 to .25 AU from the star

As with the names of the stars themselves, astronomers searched deep within their creative souls and named them B, C, D, E, F, H and G. The letters were assigned in the order of discovery, not by their distance from the start. A list of the planets in order from the sun is B, H, C, F, E,D, and G. (Note: Planet H and G still needs to be verified.) Continue reading