What Would Happen if Planet Earth Was Twice Its Size?

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If the planet Earth was twice its size, a lot of things would happen to the rest of the solar system. Find out what would happen if the planet Earth was twice its size with help from an educational professional in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Moons & Planets
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Video Transcript

Hi, my name is Eylene Pirez. And this is, "What would happen if planet earth was twice the size?" So there's a lot of things that could happen. Especially it would mess up the entire evolutionary process that we have undergone so far. One of the big changes here is that the gravitational force of the planet increases with mass. So now your gravitational pull will be a lot stronger. And this has several consequences. If your gravitational pull is stronger it means that our bodies will feel a lot heavier. So for one our entire form of locomotion, our bodies, the way we move. Everything will be different. So the human shape will be probably completely different. The second thing is that flora and the flora and the fauna would, the trees would not be able to stand up under that kind of gravity. So the flora would be very close to the ground if we even had flora at all. So it probably would have changed evolution in a very drastic way as this kind of changes does, I mean the plant life and earth has really shaped up life for humans. So if it would have been different evolution would have changed entirely. Another thing is that our atmosphere would be different. So if you have an increased gravitational pull you are able to retain gases for a lot longer. Meaning that our atmosphere would have changed very drastically. And probably we wouldn't have been alive at the time that we are now. So it probably would have taken a lot longer to get the right composition if we even got the right composition. Or we would have been completely different. The other thing is that we can also get a lot of internal heating. So if we have planet earth and we have a lot more mass since we increased the size. We can keep the heat of the core trapped for longer. Which means that we will have a lot of more volcanic activity. And the continent would be changing a lot. So to summarize, the gravitational pull would be a really big problem. The atmosphere would be a problem in terms of we don't know what composition we might have gotten if we were bigger and were able to collect a lot more gases. The plant life would have changed. And overall we would have felt a lot heavier so the ways of locomotion would have been different. So as you can see even changing the size slightly in a planet can have really drastic measurements for how life can develop. So this is something that we look at a lot when we go to different planets and we're looking for life. Is we know it's not going to look like us because we know all the things that had to line up in order to make the human body as we know it. My name is Eylene Pirez, and I'm an astrophysicist. And this is, "What would happen if earth was twice it's size?"


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