My first post for Fine-Tuned Fridays. I figure that if I feature a different fine-tuning point each Friday I can keep this going a long time. This week’s is about our position in the Milky Way.
We are positioned between spiral arms of the galaxy in a relatively empty area of space. This is important because if we were situated within a denser region of an arm we would be subject to a much higher amount of radiation, and would more likely to suffer nearby supernovas and gamma-ray bursts.
This position in the galaxy also allows us to make observations of the universe. There are no large nebulae or star clusters to drown out the light from more distant objects. The Coal Sack of dust between us and the galactic center blocks the blinding light from that direction.
We are situated about halfway between the galactic center and the outer edge of the galaxy. If we were closer to the center we would be subject not only to the same dangers as inside an arm, but by the massive amounts of radiation that the central black hole emits when it is in a feeding phase. If we were in the outer part of the disk there would not be enough heavier elements to create planets, or provide the chemistry for life. There is evidence that our system was formed closer in, in cluster of other stars, and migrated out to it’s present position. This provided an abundance of heavy elements for formation, and a quiet neighborhood for maturity.
We are placed just inside the co-rotation distance from the center, which means that we revolve around the galaxy at roughly the same rate as the spiral arm structure, which keeps us in our area between arms and avoids dangerous arm crossings. If we were at exactly the co-rotation distance it would set up gravitational instabilities in our system, so just inside that distance is optimal.
Our orbit around the galactic center is remarkably flat. if it were to oscillate too much and carry us too far beyond the plane of the elliptic we would emerge from behind the Coal Sack and other intervening matter, and would be bombarded by deadly radiation from the core.
The more observations we make, the more we discover how unlikely we are. Virtually everything we measure about our reality shows a narrow range of circumstances for life. In my judgement this is strong evidence for design. You are free to believe what you want.