This was posted on Reddit a while ago; someone created graphics showing what Earth sunsets may look like if our Sun were replaced with another star. I do not know how accurate these images are, but they are surely beautiful:
Click to embiggen the image.
Planets can be quite strange. We just learned that massive planets can have solid surfaces. That’s not the only weird world that is out there.
Cracked.com has a list of 6 Planets that put Sci Fi to shame. It’s an older article but it’ll still serve as source material.
- Gliese 436 b: “Coated in burning ice”
- WASP-12b: “Slowly getting eaten”
- HD 69830c: “Puts Our Night Sky to shame”
- PSR B1257+12b: “Orbits a Massive Strobe Light”
- Titan: “Covered in ‘fossil’ fuels”
- Gliese 581c “Hellish Landscape with black plants and red sky
Astrobites responded with a list of 6 Plantes that put Sci Fi and Cracked.com to shame.
- GJ1214b: “Planet is a big ball of steam”
- Kepler-16b: “Has two suns”
- Kepler-11: “Has six planets inside the orbit of Venus”
- HD80606b: “Skims its sun”
- 1SWAP J140747.93-394542.6: “Ring system puts Saturn to shame” (lots of shaming going on)
- There may be many planets that have no stars at all
- COROT-7b: “It rains rocks”
It’s probably impossible to account for all this weirdness with an RNG based system, at least one that remains manageable. However, the take-away is that even after decades of finding real exo-planets, we can still get away with designing really odd outlier worlds for our science fiction heroes.