View Full Version : Planet's and their poles

01-20-2012, 08:58 PM
I'm wondering how exactly the poles of a planet affect it. I mostly mean when the pole is covered in ice or an icy landmass like Antarctica or the ice in the north pole.

How would a world with two large icy landmasses in both the north and south be different from a planet like Earth with just a major mass in the south. I'm just curious what the effects would be before I rework my map to include poles.

01-20-2012, 09:25 PM
I think it depends on how the poles are related to the plane of the orbit, more than how much land is beneath the pole.
If the north or south pole is at or near 90 degrees to the plane of orbit they will stay "icy". The farther the axis of rotation deviates from the plane of orbit, the greater the effect solar radiation will affect the planet. The distance from the solar source is also important. Uranus is a great example in our own solar system. It's axis of rotation is nearly parallel with its orbit but its distance from the sun is so great that there is far less seasonal change than the same axial tilt would have on one of the rocky inner planets orbiting much closer.

Master TMO
01-21-2012, 01:49 AM
From some of the stuff I've read and watched, Antarctica being over the South Pole is one of the big contributors to why we are in an Ice Age right now, because it is blocking ocean currents from pushing warmer water to the pole. Another one is the land bridge connecting North and South America, which also prevents ocean currents from circulating the water around.

I'm only repeating what I remember hearing others say though. I'm no expert climatologist. Or even a novice climatologist.