Reasons to Believe

Solar System Design

  • Planet Earth: The Largest Possible Habitat?

    On a larger scale, another form of California dreamin’ is the desire of modern-day humans for a bigger planetary home. In fact, the latest justification for an atheistic worldview is the charge … more

  • Thank God for Jupiter

    I spent most of my childhood in Vancouver, British Columbia. On those rare winter days when we did get snow it was wet and slushy. Consequently, getting hit by a snowball in Vancouver was a much more … more

  • Compositions of Extrasolar Planets

    When extrasolar gas giant planets were first discovered in 1995,1 many astronomers presumed these planets would prove close analogues to the gas giants in our solar system. The list of known … more

  • Dynamics of Hierarchical Two-Planet Systems

    Currently, astronomers have identified over 40 multi-planet extrasolar planetary systems. Accurate data on the orbits of the planets in these systems permits researchers to address the following … more

  • A TNRTB Best of: Rare Solar System, Rare Sun

    Working at Reasons to Believe provides many opportunities for us to travel around the country and the world, not only to engage skeptics in discussion about science/faith issues, but also to encourage … more

  • A TNRTB Best of: Recap on the Late Heavy Bombardment

    A growing body of evidence indicates that early Earth experienced a period of cataclysmic bombardment by comets and/or asteroids. Scientists refer to this period as the Late Heavy Bombardment (LHB). … more

  • Ultraviolet Habitable Zones

    Two years ago, the discovery of Earth-sized planets around M-dwarf stars generated well-deserved excitement in the astronomical community. These stars comprise more than 75 percent of all … more

  • What Wiped Out the Dinosaurs? Part 2: The Effects

    In last Monday’s article, I discussed the conclusions drawn by a panel of 41 scientists from their careful review of over twenty years’ worth of research findings concerning the cause of … more

  • Planet Shredded Before Our Eyes

    Over the last two decades, astronomers have discovered more than 430 extrasolar planets. Although the initial expectation was that these planetary systems would resemble the solar system, the data … more

  • What Wiped Out the Dinosaurs? Part 1: The Cause

    They claimed their detection of iridium enrichment at the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary (65.5 million years ago) implied that an asteroid, approximately 10 kilometers (6 miles) in diameter, … more

  • Design of Outward Migration of Gas Giant Planets

    On June 5–6, 2012, a rare solar system event will occur. Venus will transit across the face of the Sun. Such a transit occurs when Venus aligns perfectly between the Sun and Earth allowing … more

  • Results from a Refurbished Hubble

    In the last several years, the Hubble space telescope has taken deep space photographs. This involved choosing an area of the sky not obscured by bright objects like stars or nearby galaxies, and … more

  • Differences between Ganymede and Callisto Explained

    How do two similar objects form in similar conditions yet end up in vastly different final states? Whether studying human twins, planets, or moons, differences provide powerful tools in understanding … more

  • Enhanced Activity in Solar-Type Stars

    Many stars share certain characteristics with the Sun, such as age, metallicity (abundance of elements heavier than helium), luminosity, and effective temperature. Yet, these stars exhibit much higher … more

  • Small Extrasolar Water World Discovered

    Extrasolar planets frequently make news; in particular, a recent discovery by a team of 19 American and European astronomers is attracting attention. The newly detected planet is now the second … more

  • Further Comments on Comets

    About a year and a half ago I wrote about the controversy between some creationists and the astronomy community over whether the short-lived nature of comets argues for a young earth or for a … more

  • Outward Migration of Gas Giant Planets

    Since the first discovery of an extrasolar planet in 1995,1 astronomers have detected more than 400 extrasolar planets, most of which are gas giants like Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. The … more