If a planet suddenly disappears from the solar system, will the solar system fall into chaos?

This paper takes part in the series essay competition of “great science” of Recordunkown.

The solar system is the home of the earth, and the entire solar system, in addition to the earth, there are seven other planets, they revolve around the center of the sun with the earth. So how did the solar system come into being?


In fact, most of the stellar systems in the universe were born in clouds. After the birth of the singularity explosion 13.8 billion years ago, matter began to form. With the continuous expansion of the universe, hydrogen, helium and other materials are also condensing in every corner of the universe to form early nebulae.

After the formation of the nebula, it began to rotate under the action of cosmic gravity, and the rotation produced a certain centripetal force, a large number of materials began to condense to the center of the nebula, forming the initial central celestial body. After the birth of this celestial body, with the mass, it has a strong self gravity, which can absorb nebular matter more effectively.

When the mass of the central celestial body reaches a certain degree, the super pressure ignites the internal nuclear fusion, thus forming a star. Most of the material in the nebula is needed for the birth of stars, and the leftover materials are continuously condensed to form planets and other small objects.


The solar system was born in the same way. Five billion years ago, the position of the solar system was just a solar nebula. Later, the sun was born in the center and eight planets were formed around it. The early solar system was very chaotic. At that time, the eight planets were just born, and there was no stable orbit. At the same time, the whole solar system was full of debris, asteroids and so on.

With the passage of time, the orbits of the eight planets began to stabilize, and the debris of the inner galaxy was also blown to the edge of the solar system. Only in this way can the solar system really stabilize and give the earth a chance to breed life.


From this we can see that the stability of the solar system is a system formed by the sun and the eight planets. In this system, any change may bring about fluctuations in the system. If a planet suddenly disappears from the solar system, the stability of the whole solar system will inevitably produce certain fluctuations.

So will the disappearance of planets bring the solar system back into the chaos of its early days? This possibility is very small. Although the stability of the whole solar system is maintained by the sun and the eight planets, the sun plays a role of calming the sea in the whole system.

As we all know, gravity is the core rule of the stability of the universe. Objects with mass will have gravity. The greater the mass, the greater the gravity. The mass of the sun accounts for 99.86% of the total mass of the solar system, so its gravity can not be interfered by other planets. As long as the sun can be stable, then the entire solar system will be able to maintain overall stability.


Although the sudden disappearance of a planet can’t bring chaos to the whole solar system, it can’t be avoided. How big the impact will be depends on the position and mass of the planets. The disappearance of different planets has different effects on the solar system.

Mercury is closest to the sun and has a small mass, so its disappearance will have little impact on the solar system. Venus is the neighbor of the earth, and its mass is similar to that of the earth. If it disappears, the gravitational influence of Venus will be lost in the earth’s equilibrium system. However, due to the large distance between celestial bodies, the disappearance of this gravity will not have much impact on the earth.


Mars is also a neighbor of the earth. Its mass is much smaller than that of the earth. If Mars disappears, the impact will be greater than that of Venus. The reason is that there is an asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, which stabilizes the asteroid belt to a certain extent and reduces the probability of the earth being hit by an asteroid.

After Mars, Jupiter is the largest gas giant planet in the solar system. The mass of all the other seven planets can’t match Jupiter. If Jupiter disappears suddenly, it will have the biggest impact on the whole solar system, and the most direct impact is Mars and the asteroid belt.

Jupiter is a great contributor to the evolution of life on earth over billions of years. Jupiter plays the role of the earth’s protector, which can effectively attract asteroids from the edge of the solar system to the inner galaxy to avoid the impact of the earth. You know, the impact of an asteroid can easily exterminate life. It was the impact of an asteroid that led to the extinction of dinosaurs 65 million years ago.


In addition, there is a huge asteroid belt around Jupiter, which poses a great threat to the earth. With Jupiter at its side, it is able to maintain a stable environment so that its asteroids do not run around. But if there is no Jupiter, the asteroid belt will fly itself, and relying on Mars is very difficult to bind the asteroid belt.

At that time, a large number of asteroids may run towards the inner galaxy, and the earth may be hit by many asteroids at the first time. Although the sudden disappearance of Jupiter will not bring the whole solar system into chaos, the asteroid belt without constraints can easily destroy life on earth and turn the earth from a beautiful ecological planet into a desolate planet like Mars.


Saturn is the second largest planet in the solar system. If it suddenly disappears, its influence can not be underestimated. You know, Saturn has a very large ring. This ring orbits Saturn, forming a stable structure. But if Saturn is not there, the ring will not be bound, it will be confused.

Of course, even if the rings of Saturn are chaotic, it is difficult to pose a threat to the inner galaxy because of the existence of big brother Jupiter. After losing Saturn’s gravity, the rings will probably be attracted by Jupiter’s gravity. Some of them will orbit Jupiter and become moons, while some of them will fall into Jupiter and become dust.

Finally, the disappearance of Uranus and Neptune has a very small impact on the inner galaxy, but a greater impact on the edge of the solar system. As we all know, there is a Kuiper belt at the edge of the solar system, which is greatly influenced by the gravity of Neptune and Uranus.


Once they disappear suddenly, the Kuiper belt on the edge of the solar system will produce huge fluctuations, and many asteroids may leave orbit and run towards the inner galaxy. Fortunately, with Jupiter and Saturn in the way, the inner galaxy will remain stable even if there is chaos at the edge of the solar system.

Anyway, because the earth is the home of human beings and a beautiful ecological planet. Although the sudden disappearance of a planet will not have a huge impact on the stability of the entire solar system, as long as some small impact occurs, it may have a huge threat to the earth’s ecosystem and the survival of life.

The ecology and development of life on earth need a very stable structure of the solar system. Only when the solar system is stable can human beings continue to develop and hope to eventually become a powerful interstellar civilization.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button