...but Earth isn't a unit there. There doesn't really seem to be any ambiguity.EugeneStyles wrote:phlip wrote:EugeneStyles wrote:You would think that astronomers of all people would know what "mega" means.
great, large, vast, big, high, tall; mighty, important?
Only in the same way that "theory" means a wild guess with no proof. Mega- is an SI prefix with a specific meaning in scientific terms. Using the less precise layman's meaning to describe a scientific find is just sloppy.
And are scientists the ones calling these planets mega-Earths, and are they doing so when talking primarily to other scientists? If one is talking to laypeople, and the layman's term will be understood correctly, I don't see any problem in using it.