Whole New Worlds

by A Capella Science

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lyrics

WHOLE NEW WORLDS
(An Aladdin History of Exoplanets)

PLANET SCIENTIST
A whole new world

CHOIR
A whole new world

PLANET SCIENTIST
That's what we'll see

CHOIR
That's what we'll see..

PART 1: OBSCURITY

PLANET SCIENTIST
I'm looking for
One tug
The pull of a planet
One tell
A wobbling sun
I've searched for years, haven't found a one
But they're out there!

One jump
In radial redshift
One slip
Of spectral lines
They'll see
If I can show them the sines

BIGWIG 1
Pish tosh!

BIGWIG 2
Green men!

BIGWIG 3
Take five..

BIGWIGS
Take ten!

PLANET SCIENTIST
Just a little cash, guys...

BIGWIGS
Budget's tight; don't fund this trash guys!

PLANET SCIENTIST
I can take a hint
Better face the facts
Second-hand'll have to do

GRAD STUDENTS
Eww!
All you planet hunters at the bottom
You've got fact and fantasy entwined

BIGWIG 2
Finding planets except they haven't got one

PLANET SCIENTIST
Well they gotta be forming readily
When you think about it given we've got nine!

BIGWIGS/GRAD STUDENTS
Enh..

LEAD
One jump, a shift in the spectrum

CROWD
Pish tosh!

LEAD
One drift of meters per second

CROWD
Green men!

LEAD
One graph of period power

CROWD
Take five!

LEAD
They laugh but I'm not sour

CROWD
Take ten!

LEAD
Here goes
18 months of data
Cross and correlate it
All I gotta do is

PLANET SCIENTIST/CROWD
Run!

*Computer runs data*
*NO PLANETS FOUND*

PLANET SCIENTIST
Pish tosh..
Green men..
Ah, don't mind them!
If only they'd look closer
Would they see a pure void
No sirree
They'd find out
There's worlds galore
To see

PART 2: DISCOVERY

CROWD
Make way for Pegasi
51 Pegasi!

REPORTER
First was a world
Round an old pulsar
That's true
But the news
Is a sun-like star
With wobble
Too quick and precise
To be designed
No fluke, not a spot
If you like it hot
Well you're gonna love this find

Pegasi 51b
Planet discovered
Orbit traced
Every four days
Hot as can be
Its order-Jupiter size
Was something of a surprise
Especially given its star's proximity

Pegasi 51b
It's a new era
To detect
Exoplanets
Soon there'll be three
As planet pulls on its Sun
It shifts the stellar spectrum
That's how we found 51b Pegasi

GRAD STUDENTS
How'd a planet get so close in orbit?
Cause I thought you needed ice to form it
Did it later undergo some strange migration?
Star too small to be so long-pulsating
And too old to be so quick rotating
Is there any other good interpretation?

CROWD
This will certainly help with our funding

BIGWIGS
We got your funding!
We got your funding!

CROWD
Got a surface of 1200 C

GRAD STUDENTS
It's treacherous, so treacherous

REPORTER
If in time this new breakthrough feels mundane

CROWD
Planets are common!

PLANET SCIENTIST
That's proof
Of the truth
I've been telling you

CROWD
This is no mean anomaly
Pegasi
Pegasi

REPORTER/CROWD
Pegasi 51b
Planet uncovered

REPORTER
Round a far
Main sequence star
Spectral type G
We know its mass to be high
Half Jupiter by sine i

CROWD
It's 15.61 parsecs from home
And it shakes our faith in how planets are formed
And its star is in Pegasus
Give it an "a" and thus
Label the planet as b
Fifty-
One Pegasi!

PART 3: PROLIFERATION

KEPLER SCIENTIST
Well plotting Doppler shifts is glacial-pace
And that astrometry ne'er prevails
But baby you're in luck cause
Up in space
You got a planet-finder never fails

You got the power of statistics now
You got a view without an atmosphere
So no more nights spent locked up in your tower
All you gotta do is wait right here

And I say!

Kepler the planet searcher
Got a dip--no two--no three
We just measure brightness
Plot it out
Yeah that's
Transiting photometry
Hey hey hey!

My my
Oh no!
Got a planet there!

When your stars do this
And your curves displace
Then your star's got this
Transiting its face

Then you hit compute!
And lookie here, haha!

You get good diameter data
From that dip!
And orbit distance from the length of year

Well now we need this tale supported by
A ground observer with a good Échelle
We got a two thousand planets certified
Two thousand more that only time will tell

But let's take em all and plot em out
And find out if we're really all alone
Is there a rocky world we've found no doubt
That orbits in the habitable zone
Like home?

Kepler the planet searcher
Got an Earth 4-5-2-b

Part of a throng
40 billion strong

There ain't never been a field
Clever as the field
There ain't never been a field
Better than the field they call
Exoplanetology!

CROWD
Exoplanetology!

PART 4: NEIGHBOUR

PLANET SCIENTIST
I can show you a world
A shining shimmering planet
Found concealed in the band-shifts
Of the closest star in sight

I've found hope in the skies
And facing wonder I wonder
Could the sine wave discovered be
A planet fit for life

A whole new world
A new fantastic point of blue
Placed in that narrow zone
Where water flows
Midway 'tween cold and steaming

ASTROBIOLOGIST
A whole new world
Its sun a faint and reddish hue
Could there be waiting here
A biosphere
Evolving in this whole new world to view

PLANET SCIENTIST
Fathoming a whole new world to view

ASTROBIOLOGIST
Unbelievable find
Indescribable feeling
Earthlings someday revealing
Through directly captured light
A whole new world

PLANET SCIENTIST
Don't just stare from a far

ASTROBIOLOGIST
Though nigh impossible to see

PLANET SCIENTIST
Wouldn't close up be bolder

ASTROBIOLOGIST
Next to its parent's flair
If life is there
We'll know through atmosphere spectroscopy

PLANET SCIENTIST
A whole new world

ASTROBIOLOGIST
Block the glare of the star

PLANET SCIENTIST
A laser starshot to pursue

ASTROBIOLOGIST
With a star-shaped occulter

BOTH
Chasing that crazy dream
That's always been
Of walking in a whole new world with you

PLANET SCIENTIST
A whole new world

ASTROBIOLOGIST
a whole new world

PLANET SCIENTIST
That's where we'll be

ASTROBIOLOGIST
That's where we'll be

PLANET SCIENTIST
A thrilling chase

ASTROBIOLOGIST
A home in space

BOTH
For you and me

CHOIR
A whole new world
Aaaaahhh

PLANET SCIENTIST
Made you look!

credits

released March 1, 2017
Sam Robson: Kepler Scientist, Bigwig 1
Julien Neel: Reporter, Bigwig 2
Gia Mora: Astrobiologist, grad student, Bigwig 3
Tim Blais: Planet Scientist, grad students, crowd, orchestra.

Produced, mixed and mastered by Tim Blais

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