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Author Topic: Lighting up a Planetary System without a main star  (Read 37 times)

pacca

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Lighting up a Planetary System without a main star
« on: Yesterday at 12:48:30 AM »
I'm trying to recreate the system from the movie Interstellar in game. So far it's been going pretty well, but there's a big glaring issue; all the planets near Gargantua (a super massive black hole at the center of the system) are dark, as it doesn't emit light.

I tried to create a super heated accretion disk to light things up, which is how it works in the movie, but apparently only stars can light up other planets in game. I tried making the accretion disk out of stars, but once they broke up past the point that the game would consider them stars, all the planets would instantly dim, even though that realistically doesn't make sense, since the super heated matter is still there.

My other plan was to simply place some stars in orbit so they could take the place of the accretion disk, but I don't want them to disturb the orbit of planet Miller, which orbits very close to the black hole, as close as I could reasonably put it. Putting the stars close enough inside the orbit of Miller causes them to get destroyed by tidal forces.

I'm aware that the game normally has a generic light source in place for when no stars are in a simulation. Problem is, there is a star; Pantagruel, a neutron star, is in a very far away orbit from the black hole and its' nearby planets, so there is technically a light source, but it's far away, and really shouldn't be producing any light for the currently dark planets.

Is there a solution for this? This is the one thing holding me back from being proud of this recreation.

tkulogo

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Re: Lighting up a Planetary System without a main star
« Reply #1 on: Yesterday at 05:43:36 AM »
Try a ring of cool (4000K) high mass (1.2 solar mass) white dwarfs near the event horizon, just far enough out to not get shredded. The density of the white dwarfs should allow them to be very close to the black hole. I suspect that the nearest one or two will act as the light source for the planet.

pacca

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Re: Lighting up a Planetary System without a main star
« Reply #2 on: Yesterday at 01:05:40 PM »
I never thought to use white dwarfs! I put two in orbit of Gargantua, and they were able to survive! At first they didn't light up much, but all I had to do was raise their temperature, and they now light up the whole system exactly as intended! Thank you