When human beings walked out of the earth, the first thing that caught our eyes was the solar system, which is a star system with 8 planets. From the perspective of the earth, the solar system is undoubtedly a very vast space. Counting the Oort Cloud, the diameter reaches about 2 light years.
But when we look out of the solar system, we see a Milky Way with a diameter of more than 100,000 light-years. In the silver system, the number of stars has reached 100-400 billion, and the solar system is just one of them, very small.
From the perspective of the Milky Way, the solar system is undoubtedly dusty. Scientists have discovered that the position of the solar system in the Milky Way is relatively remote. The solar system is a barred spiral galaxy with four main spiral arms. The solar system is at the edge of the spiral arms in Orion, about 26,000 light-years away from the center of galaxy. It is equivalent to a location on the outskirts of a city. Many people may say that from the perspective of the overall distribution of the Milky Way, the solar system is not particularly remote from the Galactic Center. Why is it a barren land?
From the perspective of distance distribution, the solar system is indeed not a very remote location in the Milky Way, but if you look at the distribution of stars, the solar system is really very remote. I believe many friends know that the central region of the Milky Way is extremely bright. One reason for this is that there is a supermassive black hole in the center of the Milky Way, and the other is that the number of stars in the galactic center is very large.
There are hundreds of billions of stars in the Milky Way. The distribution of these stars is not uniform, but the closer to the center of the galaxy, the more stars there are. Ninety percent of the hundreds of billions of stars are basically concentrated in the center of the Milky Way galaxy, and the distribution of stars is very small in a relatively biased position like the solar system. The closest star system to us is also about 4.2 light years away.
So a friend had this question: Is it a good thing or a bad thing for human beings in the remote and barren land of the galaxy? I believe that some friends have also seen articles discussing this issue. Most of the articles think that it is a good thing that human beings are in remote places in the Milky Way. So is this really the case?
In fact, to unravel the answer to this question, we need to analyze it from different angles, and the answer varies from angle to angle. If you consider the livable evolution of life and the safety of human civilization, the current position of the solar system is undoubtedly very good. Why do you say that?
First of all, we all know that a star is not a gentle guy, it often loses its temper, and the formation of a living planet cannot do without stars. The reason why the earth can become a planet of life and that life can evolve into intelligent life step by step is undoubtedly a very great contribution from the sun.
Life on earth and the destiny of human beings are closely related to the sun. It releases powerful energy outwards, which maintains the balance of the earth’s ecology. Let life and mankind have a stable and safe living environment. Compared with stars, the earth is an extremely small existence, and life on the earth is more fragile. As long as the sun sneezes casually, it may bring an unimaginable disaster on the earth, and even make life completely extinct.
The solar system is not a galaxy composed entirely of stars, the sun and eight planets. In addition to the eight planets, there are also a large number of small celestial bodies such as asteroids. There are three small celestial bodies in the solar system from the inside to the outside, namely the Asteroid Belt, the Kuiper Belt and the Otter Nebula. Under normal circumstances, the sun’s gravity can firmly bind these small celestial bodies so that they will not easily run around.
But if the solar system moves closer to the center of the Milky Way, the number of stars around the solar system will increase greatly. At this time, the gravity of other stars will affect the stability of the solar system. These small celestial bodies are not as quiet as they are now, but often deviate from their own. The orbit is rushing towards the inner galaxy, which greatly increases the probability of the Earth being hit by an asteroid.
The impact of asteroid impact on the earth’s ecology and life is very large, and it can easily cause mass extinction events. If mass extinction events occur frequently on the earth, then the evolution of life will be greatly affected. Even if human beings are born, the road of development will be full of bumps.
In addition to these, the earth’s current remote location has another advantage, that is, it is not easy to be discovered by alien civilizations. Although mankind has not yet discovered any extraterrestrial civilization, from the perspective of the universe, there is basically no doubt about the existence of extraterrestrial civilization. Only due to the backwardness of human technology and distance, we have not found an alien civilization.
If there are interstellar civilizations in the universe that are constantly searching for intelligent life planets, the focus should be on areas with more stars, rather than very remote areas such as the solar system. The alien civilization may not be friendly. If the earth is discovered by a malicious civilization, it may bring us devastating disasters.
Through the above analysis, we can see that from a security point of view, it is a very good thing that the solar system can be at the edge of the Milky Way. Here, we can develop more safely and steadily, until one day we become an interstellar civilization and then walk out of the solar system and move closer to the center of the Milky Way.
That being the case, it should be a great thing for human beings to be in the remote and barren land of the Milky Way, what else can be discussed? If you think this is a totally good thing, you are very wrong. In the previous section, we only analyzed from the perspective of the safety of the earth and human beings. This is indeed a good thing, but if we change our perspective, it may be a bad thing.
We put our perspective on the development speed of human civilization and do some simple analysis, and you will understand. Scientists once divided the strength of cosmic civilization into four levels. According to this level, human beings are now only level 0.7 civilization, not even level one civilization.
The continuous efforts of mankind are to strive to continuously improve the level of civilization, because only when the level of civilization is higher can we explore the farther starry sky and explore more mysteries. The increase in civilization level also means an increase in strength. Only in the cosmic civilization can we have more voice and will not be bullied by other civilizations.
For a civilization to achieve rapid development, two conditions are required. One is continuous innovation of scientific and technological theory and the other is to have sufficient resources and energy. No matter how powerful the theory is without the support of resources and energy, it is just empty talk. To some extent, resources and energy are the basis for the rapid development of a civilization.
After mankind entered the era of science and technology, it has been using the earth’s resources and energy, but with the rapid development of science and technology, the demand for resources is also increasing. After growing into a first-class civilization, we need to mine space resources to meet the development of human science and technology, and the resources of the solar system can meet the needs of human first-class civilization.
But when we become a second-class civilization, the demand for resources and energy will also increase exponentially. At this time, the resources of the solar system may no longer satisfy us, and we need to explore resources outside the solar system. But when we walked out of the solar system, we found that there were too few stars around, and the distance between the star systems was more than a few light-years. In this way, the speed and efficiency of our resource extraction would be greatly reduced.
Without sufficient resources, the development speed of human civilization will slow down significantly, which will seriously affect the level of human civilization. If resources are sufficient, it takes 10,000 years to upgrade from a second-level civilization to a third-level civilization, and if the resources are severely slow, this time may be extended several times or even dozens of times.
Therefore, from the perspective of the development speed of human civilization, the current position of the solar system is very bad. Once we grow into a secondary civilization, the subsequent development speed may be severely slowed down. The level of human civilization is slowly rising, which is not a good thing for us, because the cosmic civilizations may not be so friendly and peaceful.
If the strength of human civilization is not enough, it may become a stepping stone for others on the road to future cosmic hegemony, and may even be terminated by a more powerful civilization. In the region closer to the center of the Milky Way, the resources are undoubtedly more abundant. In the early stage, the advantages may not be very different before leaving the parent galaxy.
However, once civilizations leave the parent galaxy, the demand for surrounding starry sky resources will increase significantly, and the strength of civilizations will increase at a faster rate. And the area closer to the center of the galaxy has another advantage, that is, it can communicate and learn with more civilizations.
In areas with denser stars, there are undoubtedly more star systems, and there may be more intelligent civilizations. Although the civilizations may be unfriendly and there will be frictional wars, dangers and opportunities coexist. The ability to communicate between more civilizations will undoubtedly accelerate the development of civilizations.
Through the above two analysis, we can see that it is a good thing or a bad thing for human beings to be in the remote and barren land of the Milky Way. From a security perspective, it is a good thing, but from the perspective of the development of human civilization, it is a bad thing. Of course, the position of the solar system was fixed as early as 5 billion years ago. We can’t change these, we just face reality.
Humans do not need to consider the current position of the solar system in the Milky Way, whether it is good or bad for us. What we have to do is to work hard to develop science and technology. As long as the strength of science and technology is strong, there will be infinite possibilities in the future, and human civilization can go to the interstellar and become stronger step by step.