Re: Planet Densities

Michael Lorrey (
Tue, 12 Nov 1996 20:03:25 -0500

Joel "Twisty" Nye wrote:
> Density of planets today are estimated by visibly measuring speed,
> distance, and diameter, in order to take a stab at the mass, and thus
> mass per volume. One has to be in visual range to make good
> measurements. It doesn't look as if this method will change in the near
> future. Even if it did, we'd still likely have to move pretty close to
> these bodies to determine density... There just aren't enough indicators
> that can be read from an interstellar distance (at present).

Actually there are. The interferometric methods being used by computer
linking distant observatories is breakeing new ground every day. They
have even discovered liquid water on one of the latest discoveries, and
some people are working on a chlorophyll detection methodology.