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Rob Sheldon on the sun as an “ordinary star”

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From Ian O’Neill at Space.com, we learn:

Is our sun fundamentally different from other “sun-like” stars? This question highlights an ongoing controversy about whether our nearest star is unique or, in fact, an “ordinary star.”

Now, an international collaboration of solar physicists thinks it has an answer. Although the sun is very special to Earth and all of the planets in the solar system, it isn’t unique; indeed, it is driven by the same internal mechanisms as other stars, the researchers said in a statement highlighting the findings of a new study. lMore.

Our physics color commentator Rob Sheldon writes to say,

This presser made me laugh. Here’s the punch line:

“Although the sun is very special to Earth and all of the planets in the solar system, it isn’t unique; indeed, it is driven by the same internal mechanisms as other stars, the researchers said in a statement highlighting the findings of a new study.”

Breaking news! Laws of physics apply to other stars!

I know I know, you’re blaming the journalist. But it wasn’t his fault, honestly. What it reveals is a deep rift in the scientific world between “solar physicists” and “astrophysicists”. They are both supposed to be studying stars, it’s just that solar physicists get terabytes of data on a very nearby one, whereas astrophysicists write one paper per photon (averaging over cosmic ray energies.) Perhaps for this reason, and perhaps for historical reasons, astrophysicists abhor magnetic field, whereas solar physicists absolutely revel in it, invoking its magic to explain every sort of solar disturbance (reconnection, they explained.)

To reconcile this apparent disconnect, astrophysicists were prone to say that the Sun was special, so they could dismiss it. Apparently exceptions are better than ignorance. Then what this paper represents, is some astrophysicists finally figuring out how to get magnetic fields to come out of their stellar dynamics computer simulations. If they can simulate it, then it must be real.

“Born under a bad sign, been down since I began to crawl

If it weren’t for bad metaphysics, I’d have no metaphysics at all”

The Long Ascent Rob Sheldon’s most recent book is a novel, The Long Ascent: Genesis 1–11 in Science & Myth, Volume 1 (Wipf & Stock).

Naturalists are not picky as to where they try to claim victories.

See also: How naturalism rots science from the head down

and

What becomes of science when the evidence does not matter?

2 Replies to “Rob Sheldon on the sun as an “ordinary star”

  1. 1
    rvb8 says:

    What is Mr Sheldon’s problem?

    A group of scientists conclude our, ‘G-type main-sequence star’, (G2V),or simply a ‘Yellow dwarf’ star, is common as muck in the universe, and Mr Sheldon dissaproves?

    A simple Wikipedia peruse of, ‘The Sun’, gave me all the info I needed.

    And once again a simple idea, proved by scientists, ‘our sun is very common working on known physics principles’, is turned into confusion by ID advocates.

  2. 2
    groovamos says:

    RVB: What is Mr Sheldon’s problem?

    You don’t really mean that do you? I thought that you said a couple of days ago that it takes training in psychiatry to understand all of the biochemical causes of psychiatric problems, and all the mechanisms of the chemicals that can be ingested to affect the cure. Are you one of these psychiatrist people that you need to know this about Sheldon?

    RVB: A simple Wikipedia peruse of, ‘The Sun’, gave me all the info I needed…on known physics principles’, is turned into confusion

    No but see, you think it is all so confusing (oh pardon, I mean your biochemicals think they are confused) for anyone on here to find humor in self-important scientists trying to help explain to the little people that the situation of the earth, sun and solar system at large is just so ordinary which it is not.

    Why don’t your brain chemicals decide to see the delicious irony in big time scientists needing a “presser” to explain what we all have known since middle school?

    Why can’t your synapses look for what motivates big time scientists to make a public announcement out of information that you yourself saw (oh, ‘scuse me I mean your axons dendrites and sodium pumps perceived) in wikipedia? Really, why a press release all about what is in WIKIPEDIA?

    Your brain chemicals could maybe lighten up a little and look under the hood at what big time people are doing to bend the culture to their purposes. It is a bit of fun when your synapses give your dendrites permission to “feel” (loaded word, I know) the irony at what is going on.

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