The planet Jupiter may have formed faster than we thought; possibly within centuries rather than eons. This article also has some other interesting tidbits on the origin of the solar system; among them the possibility that our own solar system may not be as run-of-the-mill as we originally thought, considering that other extrasolar star systems observed seem to exhibit far more erratic patterns of behavior.
Until recently, our solar system was thought to be typical. “Astronomers have been raised since babies on the cosmological principle that our solar system is not a special place in the universe,” said Levison. “Now we’re finding that that may not be true and we may have to abandon that principle. It may be that only one in a thousand stars may be capable of sustaining solar systems like ours, where Earth-like worlds capable of sustaining complex life are possible.”
Now we’re finding that maybe, just maybe, our home system is unique, with its relatively stable structure and friendly orbits. Not meaning to be a Creationism Sensationalist, but isn’t it possible that our solar system’s uniqueness of stability — as compared to the wildly erratic extrasolar planets we’ve seen so far — could be more than just fortuitous circumstance? Could it indicate the cosmic craft of a careful planner? Perhaps even, *gasp!*, a loving Creator?
Just some ruminations from an awed old-earth Creationist. ;)
“You are beautiful beyond description
Too marvelous for words.
Too wonderful for comprehension
Like nothing ever seen or heard.
“Who can grasp Your infinite wisdom?
Who can fathom the depth of Your love?
You are beautiful beyond description
Majesty enthroned above.
“And I stand, I stand in awe of You
I stand, I stand in awe of You
Holy God to whom all praise is due
I stand in awe of You.”