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Our kind of place?

we on earth have always had a special fascination for the other planets of the solar system. But there is more to the planets than meets the telescopic eye. Studies on the planets have still not unravelled all the mysteries surrounding them. No Place like Earth throws light on some interesting facets of these nine celestial bodies.

Published: Saturday 04 July 2015

Is the Earth the only planet s
Many paradoxical questions raised by the film like whether Venus is roasting under ice remain unanswered. While Venus's surface is scorched by a temperature of 427 c , a cloud of ice crystals (frozen carbon dioxide) acts like a giant roof over it, almost creating a greenhouse-like effect. Another brain-wracking question raised is why Mercury which is closest to the Sun has a temperature lower than some other planets. Also, till date, Saturn's mysterious rings have not been fully understood by scientists.

However, the quintessential question the film addresses is, "What makes the Earth a planet with life on it and the rest of the planets uninhabitable?" One possible reason for the others being hostile to life could be the gaseous components of their atmospheres. While some planets such as Saturn contain large quantities of hydrogen and helium gas, others have an excess of carbon dioxide, and all these are not conducive to the sustenance of life. Still others like Jupiter have been found to radiate gigantic bursts of radio energy. The film points out that the Earth, which supports trillions of lifeforms, may soon become like its sister planets if its pollution continues unchecked.

The Earth has been a comfortable home for all living things. But in recent years, human interference in the form of deforestation and the burning of fossil fuels has triggered environmental change at a rate far faster than what the planet can handle. The chemical composition of the Earth's atmosphere is being altered, bringing in its wake dramatic changes in climatic patterns. Since humankind has upset the balance between the Earth's gases carbon dioxide and oxygen on which all life depends, the onus of saving the earth rests solely on its shoulders.

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