Reasons to Believe

Giant-Planet Obliquities Explained

TNRTB Archive - Retained for reference information

Solar system simulations resolve an enigma regarding the spin axes of the outer gas giant planets, effectively undermining one argument some young-earth creationists YECs) use to advocate a few-thousand-year-old cosmos. For decades, astronomers assumed that collisions with smaller bodies accounted for the fact that the spin axes of the gas giant planets did not exactly align with the sun’s axis, despite other evidence arguing against any collisions. However, recent simulations show that gravitational interactions between the gas giant planets in the early solar system (as the planets slowly changed orbits) naturally explain the spin axes of all four gas giants. These results not only solve a long-standing problem in RTB’s cosmic creation model (and remove an objection used by YECs), they also highlight the dynamic nature of the early solar system and the fine-tuning necessary to ensure a life-supporting planet like Earth.  

o   Adrián Brunini, “Origin of the Obliquities of the Giant Planets in Mutual Interactions in the Early Solar System,” Nature 440 (2006): 1163-65.


·         Related Resource

o   Hugh Ross, “Anthropic Principle: A Precise Plan for Humanity”

·         Product Spotlight

o   The Creator and the Cosmos 3rd ed., by Hugh Ross

Subjects: Solar System Design

Dr. Hugh Ross

Reasons to Believe emerged from my passion to research, develop, and proclaim the most powerful new reasons to believe in Christ as Creator, Lord, and Savior and to use those new reasons to reach people for Christ. Read more about Dr. Hugh Ross.