Summary of Konstantin Batygin: Planet 9 and the Edge of Our Solar System | Lex Fridman Podcast #201

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00:00:00 - 01:00:00

Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility of a ninth planet in our solar system, and explains how this planet could explain the existence of long-period comets. He also discusses the physical limitations of space and the rarity of collisions in the universe.

  • 00:00:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility of a hypothesized planet nine in the outer regions of our solar system. He explains that evidence for this object exists, but that it is currently unknown if it is a planet or an asteroid.
  • 00:05:00 The video discusses the discovery of a potential new planet beyond the solar system. It explains that, based on observed clustering of objects in their orbits, researchers believe that this planet may be responsible for shepherding and restricting the orbits of other objects. However, the probability of this being true is only 0.4, meaning that there is still some doubt about the existence of the planet.
  • 00:10:00 Konstantin Batygin explains how astronomers track objects in the night sky to determine their movements and orbits. He discusses how one needs to make observations over a series of nights in order to determine an object's orbit and velocity. The Verra Rubin Observatory is scheduled to begin operations next year, which will help to improve our understanding of these objects.
  • 00:15:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility of a ninth planet orbiting the sun, which could explain the existence of long-period comets. He also discusses the physical limitations of space and the rarity of collisions in the universe.
  • 00:20:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility of planets beyond our solar system and the possibility of intelligent life existing on those planets. He argues that the question of whether or not there is intelligent life out there is a very boring question, and that it is entirely plausible that there is intelligent life on Earth.
  • 00:25:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility that our solar system once possessed a population of short-period planets that were destroyed by the evil Jupiter. His analysis suggests that such a system would have been unlikely to survive due to the formation of Jupiter.
  • 00:30:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the theory that giant planets, like Jupiter, migrate from a disk of gas and dust when they form. He explains that this process is difficult to explain in detail, but that if one simply follows the inward-outward pattern of Jupiter's early motion, it is possible to create a terrestrial planet in the aftermath of the violence.
  • 00:35:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the difficulties of simulating objects in our solar system and how those difficulties increase as objects become larger. He then goes on to talk about the formation of the solar system and how gravity and magneto hydrodynamics are necessary to understand. He concludes by saying that understanding quantum mechanics is necessary to model the evolution of disks in the solar system.
  • 00:40:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses how waves travel in self-gravitating discs, and how the governing equation for their interactions is the schrodinger equation. He explains that this equation is a wave equation, and that it can be used to model waves at different levels. He also points out that the schrodinger equation is a calculational tool that can be rapidly used to answer questions about waves. Finally, he discusses how astrophysical discs span a huge range, and how they can be broken down into smaller pieces.
  • 00:45:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the history of our solar system and how planet formation works. He explains that simulations of the full history are important, but that we need to design experiments to test specific aspects of the process.
  • 00:50:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the concept of simulation and how it relates to astrophysics. He speculates that, eventually, we will run into the problem of resolution, and that video games may be one way to circumvent this.
  • 00:55:00 Konstantin Batygin says that the video games we play are very realistic and that we are easily fooled by them. He goes on to say that in the physical world, our skills are very limited and take a lot of work to develop. He compares this to the video game world, where our capabilities are limitless. He says that while being in person is more fun, eventually we will all want to go back to cars because they are more efficient and easier to maintain.

01:00:00 - 02:00:00

In this podcast, Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility of an unknown planet orbiting the edge of our solar system. He talks about the evidence for this planet, including its potential impact on our understanding of alien civilizations. He also suggests that probing for signs of intelligent life might be a more effective approach than broadcasting radio waves.

  • 01:00:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility of Planet 9, an unknown planet that orbits the solar system at an orbital period of 10,000 years and an orbit which is slightly tilted with respect to the plane of the solar system. He also discusses the evidence for Planet 9, including gravitational evidence, and the idea that it might create objects in the solar system that are anti-aligned with respect to its gravity.
  • 01:05:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility of a ninth planet in our solar system and the evidence that would be necessary to confirm its existence. He also mentions his enjoyment of physics, music, martial arts, and family. If Planet Nine were to be confirmed, it would be known by an image reflected back from a telescope on Earth.
  • 01:10:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility that there could be another planet out there that is larger than Earth, and that this could lead to the discovery of new objects in the solar system. He also talks about the analogy between the discovery of Neptune and the search for Planet Nine, saying that while we can predict the orbit and mass of Planet Nine, we cannot tell where it is on its orbit due to the lack of detections of objects in that orbit. He says that if we get good at waiting, then this could lead to the eventual discovery of intelligent alien civilizations.
  • 01:15:00 Konstantin Batygin proposes that an object he calls "Planet 9" may be responsible for injecting objects into the Kuiper Belt, which could explain some of the strange objects in that area.
  • 01:20:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility that Planet Nine may not be a planet, but instead a five-Earth-mass black hole. His calculations suggest that this is highly likely, but do not reveal anything about the object itself.
  • 01:25:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the idea of sending probes to Planet 9 in order to study it and its potential gravitational field. He believes that this is a difficult task, but one that could eventually lead to greater understanding of our solar system.
  • 01:30:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the potential for human exploration of other planets and moons, as well as the commercialization of space exploration. He also touches on the ethical considerations of space exploration.
  • 01:35:00 Konstantin Batygin argues that the human spirit is drawn to space exploration because it contains a "real magnetism" and because it leads to new developments in sex and engineering. He believes that if we cannot see the stars, human society would be drastically different. He provides a philosophical example of how hot it would be on Venus due to an opaque atmosphere.
  • 01:40:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the importance of astronomy in the development of technology and science, and how military-based funding has helped spur innovation in the past. He also says that if we invested the same amount of money into "totally useless" things like penguin mating patterns, we would get the internet anyway.
  • 01:45:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility that a large interstellar object found in our solar system could be a piece of hydrogen ice. He also discusses the possibility that this object is from an alien civilization, and how the discovery could Revolutionize our understanding of the solar system.
  • 01:50:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses his theory that an unknown planet may be orbiting the edge of our solar system, and how this could impact our understanding of alien civilizations. He also discusses the possibility that some of the objects we've launched into space will never leave our solar system, and may one day collide with Mars.
  • 01:55:00 Konstantin Batygin argues that the energetic costs of interstellar travel are difficult to overcome, and may be a bottleneck for alien civilizations. He also suggests that probing for signs of intelligent life might be a more effective approach than broadcasting radio waves.

02:00:00 - 02:35:00

In this podcast, Konstantin Batygin discusses his work on Planet 9 and the edge of our solar system. He talks about how computers will become more interactive and how simulations of complex systems could be very useful. He also discusses his work on autonomous vehicles and how pedestrians could be used to test these systems safely.

  • 02:00:00 Konstantin Batygin suggests that artificial intelligence may one day develop a form of communication that is not based on language, but on art. He also believes that human beings are on the path to discovering this common language with extraterrestrial intelligence.
  • 02:05:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses his work on Planet 9 and the edge of our solar system. He talks about how computers will become more interactive and how simulations of complex systems could be very useful. He also discusses his work on autonomous vehicles and how pedestrians could be used to test these systems safely.
  • 02:10:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses why he thinks the Beatles are one of the greatest bands of all time, and how their music stands out from other popular songs from the past. He also talks about his favorite song from one of his favorite bands, strawberry feels forever by blink 182.
  • 02:15:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses his passion for music and how it helps him in his scientific work. He also discusses how he manages to balance his life as a musician and scientist.
  • 02:20:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses how he became interested in science and how it led him to discover the existence of Planet 9. Batygin discusses how he believes that the discovery of Planet 9 will change our understanding of how the solar system works.
  • 02:25:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses his experiences during the 1990s, when he and many others went through a difficult time due to the recession. He talks about the importance of perspective and how changing environments can be a good thing. He gives advice to young people on how to navigate their career and life.
  • 02:30:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses how getting good grades is important, but they're less important now than in the past because of the internet. He says that the world is heading towards a "meritocracy" in which people are judged based on their accomplishments, not their degrees.
  • 02:35:00 Konstantin Batygin discusses the possibility of a ninth planet in our solar system, and how we may find evidence of it in the next few years. He creditsDouglas Adams with the idea.

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