Tiny Cosmic Missiles

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Darren Davis, Jul 20, 2002.

  1. Darren Davis

    Darren Davis Stunt Coordinator

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    I found this link on another board I frequent and found the article quite interesting. It's about 2 months old and I didn't find it posted here through search.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main...Fwnugg12. xml
    Here's just the first part...
     
  2. Max Leung

    Max Leung Producer

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    Wow that's pretty cool...especially the fact they could detect it entering the Earth, and then EXITING the Earth a fraction of a second later.
     
  3. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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    Just another problem with trying to shield deep space vehicles from all of the particles, rocks fargments that are traversing the heavens. I wonder what would happen if the Enterprise encountered such a fragment?
     
  4. Julie K

    Julie K Screenwriter

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    Interesting.

    However, I have a real problem with this statement:
     
  5. BrianW

    BrianW Cinematographer

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    Indeed. Although I find the subject of the article fascinating, Mr. Matthews presumes to think that we have the capacity to worry about only one type of disaster at a time and writes accordingly.

    Two things come to mind:

    1. What was the criteria used to identify impacts with these strangelets? According to the article,
     
  6. BrianW

    BrianW Cinematographer

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    One more thing:

    The existence of this super dense strange matter is predicated on the existence of a sub-atomic particle we have not yet even seen. This strange quark is predicted to exist in order to satisfy symmetry requirements in the Standard Model Theory, but direct evidence of its existence has eluded us. According to theory, only this strange matter could retain its mass and stability at such a small size. (Neutronium, on the other hand, would need several stars’ worth of mass pressing down on it in order to remain stable, eliminating the possibility of tiny neutronium bullets.) That the Standard Model does not rule out the possibility of these cosmic bullets does not, however, mean they necessarily exist.

    On the other hand, astronomers have recently detected a few ultra-high density stars that are denser than neutron stars, but not quite black holes. The only possibility remaining, according to the Standard Model, is that these stars be made of this new-fangled strange matter. Further exploration into what the Standard Model would predict about strange matter revealed that it could be stable at just about any size and mass, making possible the existence of these super dense, tiny cosmic bullets. In the face of not being able to attain the energy levels necessary to directly observe the strange quark, the discovery of these ultra-dense stars is actually considered to be compelling evidence of the particle’s existence.

    And, skeptical as I am, I must confess that the Standard Model theory’s ability to accurately predict such things is pretty much 100% on the mark.
     
  7. Darren Davis

    Darren Davis Stunt Coordinator

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    Thank you, BrianW. I always look forward to your posts as they are always interesting and informative.
     
  8. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Small asteroids a few meters across can also cause atomic-like detonations in the upper atmosphere. The article itself, though, is not so hot. Journalists should write about that with which they are familiar.
     

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