tidal lock

(redirected from Tidal locking)
Also found in: Wikipedia.

tidal lock

[′tīd·əl ′läk]
(civil engineering)
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
Mentioned in ?
References in periodicals archive ?
Due to a phenomenon called "tidal locking," the far side of the moon always faces away from the earth.
Tidal locking is possible, Crockett says, "though there's an active debate about whether that would be OK for habitability or not." And though solar flares also pose a threat to habitability, "a denser atmosphere might be able to withstand Proxima's flares," he says.
Ofer Cohen of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics said that the red-dwarf planet faces an extreme space environment in addition to other stresses like tidal locking.
The process results in tidal locking, which means the same side of the moon faces the Earth all the time and the other side remains dark, waiting to be explored.
For planets so close, the star's gravity slows down their spin so that one side always faces the star, a circumstance known as tidal locking. Climate on a locked planet might be too harsh for life.
Leconte and colleagues used computer simulations to determine that heat in a planet's atmosphere may prevent tidal locking. Heat at a planet's equator drives winds that push air toward the nightside.
Why the planet had escaped the 'tidal locking' of the Sun's gravitational pull - the same force that makes our moon face one way towards the Earth - had been a puzzle.
Rory Barnes, an astronomer at the University of Washington, authored a paper titled "Tidal Locking of Habitable Exoplanets" in which he argues that every potentially habitable planet that will be discovered by the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite - NASA's next planet-hunting satellite - will likely be tidally locked with its star.
According to a statement on the university's website: "Tidal locking results when there is no side-to-side momentum between a body in space and its gravitational partner and they become fixed in their embrace.
These effects may include tidal heating, synchronous rotation, and tidal locking, which can produce a significant effects on the planets' seasons and geologic activity."
Tidal locking occurs when a body's rotation synchronizes to its orbit of the larger host, due to the effects of gravity.
While tidal locking is a bad thing for planets, half of the planet would receive all the light while the other half would be freezing, it may be beneficial to a binary star system.