Video: This simulation recreates 4.5 billion years of planetary evolution in 4 minutes

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July 29, 2021, 23:56 GMT

The creator, David A. Roberts, hopes to add in the future the possibility of changing the initial parameters of the simulation and then observing the consequences.

Artist and computer scientist David A. Roberts recreated the history of an Earth-like planet through computer simulations.

in the video published On his personal blog, you can see how the planetary body, initially consisting of liquid magma, is covered with a solid layer. Then the movement of tectonic plates begins and the continents appear. In the end, night and day alternate, which makes it possible to assess the civilization that developed on the surface with the lights of cities.

The planetary evolution reflected in the video spans 4.5 billion years, which is equivalent to the age of the Earth.

to me explained Roberts told Gateway Vice on Wednesday, the idea was inspired by the SimEarth video game, released in 1990.

“He had a really ambitious premise, to simulate Earth-like planets from creation to the distant future, but it was very limited by the ‘hardware’ of computers at the time,” the artist said in an email regarding it. try to.

Roberts decided to recreate the idea of ​​SimEarth at the level of contemporary technology. To do this, he wrote a special program.

“Actually, I first created a mini-game, which allows you to change the terrain interactively to see how it affects climate simulation and the environment. Then I created a visual history that goes through everything automatically, which I thought would be a little easier for people to consume.”

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The artist wants to add the possibility of changing the initial parameters and then observing the consequences. In his opinion, this would give users an “intuitive understanding of the systems”.

“I haven’t had that level of interaction with this project,” he wrote, “but I’ll probably follow at some point in the future.”

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