Luke Skywalker’s childhood may have been a little less harsh if he had grown up on the more temperate Tatooine — as a new, Yale-led study identifies.

According to the study’s authors, binary star systems have more climate-friendly planets — in other words, planets with two suns — than previously known. And, he says, it could be a sign that, at least in some ways, the universe leans toward orderly alignment rather than chaotic misalignment.

For the study, the researchers looked at planets in binary star systems — systems where individual planets orbit the host star, with another star, located nearby, orbiting the entire system. (The fictional desert planet Tatooine from the “Star Wars” movies is in a binary star system.)

“We show for the first time that there is an unexpected cluster of systems where everything has order,” said Milena Rice, assistant professor of astronomy in the Yale Faculty of Arts and Sciences and lead author of the new study. which was published on February 22. Astronomical Journal. “The planets orbit in the same direction as the first star, and the second star orbits in the same plane as the planets in the system.”

Rice’s team used a variety of sources, including the Gaia DR3 catalog of high-precision stellar astronomy, the Planetary Systems Composite Parameters Table from the NASA Exoplanet Archive, and the TEPCat catalog of exoplanet spin-orbit angle measurements, 3D geometries To create 3D geometry. star system.

The researchers found that nine of the 40 systems they studied had “perfect” alignment.

“This could be an indication that planetary systems like to push toward an orderly arrangement,” Rice said. “This is also good news for the formation of life in these systems. Companions to stars that are connected differently can wreak havoc on planetary systems, collapsing them or warming the planets over time. “

And how would the world view a more temperate Tatooine?

During certain seasons of the year, it will be continuous daylight, with one star illuminating one side of the planet, while the other star is illuminating the other half of the planet. But that sunlight won’t always be warm, because one of the stars will be far away.

At other times of the year, both suns illuminate the same side of the planet, with one sun appearing much larger than the other.

Rice will give a presentation on the study at the Extreme Solar Systems conference in New Zealand in March.

The study’s co-author is Konstantin Gerbeg, a Yale Ph.D. student in astrophysics, and Andrew Vanderburgh, assistant professor of physics at MIT.

The research was funded, in part, by the Heising-Simons Foundation and the 51 Pegasi b Fellowship Program.