It's the end of the world as we know it...(maybe)

Scouse

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Have a look at this bijou little article. Interesting read.


I've been thinking about such an eventuality for a while now. Never been overly worried about nuclear war or biological threats as there's always some chance of survival. But this??


Oops. There goes the planet :(
 

kanonfodda

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Ever read a book called "Earth" by David Brin?

Basic storyline is a minute black hole in the earths core. Very good book :D
 

Wij

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Blocked by work filter.
 

Scouse

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Wij said:
Blocked by work filter.
Jees. That's a harsh filter. Shame you're not an admin.



Like me :p

;)
 

Cyradix

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Wij said:
Blocked by work filter.
An upcoming physics experiment may destroy the earth. Recent developments in physics suggest that the next generation of heavy ion colliders may create mini black holes. (A large collider that will be thirty times more powerful than current models is under construction at CERN.) It is thought that mini black holes will dissipate via Hawking radiation. But Hawking radiation has never been seen nor tested. If Hawking radiation does not work, a mini black hole could swallow the earth.

This risk seems a classic case for being careful, for what risk analysts call "the precautionary principle." Unfortunately it appears that this principle is not yet being applied. A Cassandra complex is at work. Cassandra predicted the fall of her city, Troy, but was not heard. The same is happening with this issue. The public is apathetic. CERN physicists are good enough people, but it is hard to cancel a multimillion dollar project because of low-probability concerns. Physicists have been cautioned for discussing the issue. The product of CERN’s own risk assessment, drafted eight months ago, is not yet released. Francesco Calogero, a physicist, has suggested that the risks be evaluated by a red team, arguing in favor, and a blue team, arguing against. It is up to us, the public, to provide the blue team.

The math of Hawking radiation is the hardest in physics, but the issue is simple. Hawking has a neat model of the black hole event horizon that shows how energy can come out of a black hole. It relies on a quantum theory that is widely accepted, but widely regarded as strange. Einstein did not believe it. The math may describe reality, and it may not. Elaborate math is not always true, as witness epicycles, the elaborate geometry used to plot orbits before Copernicus. No math is needed to realize the one important fact: without experimental evidence, Hawking radiation cannot be trusted 100 percent.

There are other protective considerations, but their physics is also uncertain. Plausible models can be constructed in which the protective considerations do not work. For more detail and references, see http://www.risk-evaluation-forum.org.

Of the dangers facing humanity, this is the most preventable. If enough citizens complain, governments will pull the plug. Should it be pulled? Might the science we could gather solve other risks? The possible but not certain destruction of earth has philosophical and ethical and economic aspects that call for discussion and debate. If this is talked up enough, and posted on enough websites, the Cassandra complex will be overcome. We ask readers to debate this issue.
 

Frizz

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I've posted this before, it may interest you. It considers all sorts of apocalyptic scenarios. It's good fun in my book tbh.

Anyone remember Outcast (The game, stupid fools!)? That was based around a similar idea of ignorant scientists playing with things they don't fully understand. Bloody good game actually.
 

Monkee

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hmm very interesting, but surely there should of been some kind of vote to whether they actually do this!?!? After all everyone else lives on this planet too :p
 

Cyradix

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I have to admit: the scientist in me would love to see what would happen if you insert a mini black hole into a solid object (like the earth) :D
 

Tom

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Chances are that there is a black hole at the centre of every large galaxy. They're called super-massive rotating black holes, and central to the creation of galaxies. Our own Milky Way is reckoned to have one at its centre, although we can't see it, being so close to the edge of our galaxy.

If we did create a black hole that started swallowing things, It would probably take a hell of a long time to do any serious damage, and I would imagine they would be able to suspend it in an environment where it can't actually 'swallow' anything, therefore dying out very quickly.
 

Dillinja

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The fact is that humans are on a crash-course with extinction, it's just when and how it is going to happen, and franky, there is nothing we can do about it. So, there's no point worrying about it IMO, just enjoy yourself while you are still here! :)
 

sibanac

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Tom said:
Chances are that there is a black hole at the centre of every large galaxy. They're called super-massive rotating black holes, and central to the creation of galaxies. Our own Milky Way is reckoned to have one at its centre, although we can't see it, being so close to the edge of our galaxy.

If we did create a black hole that started swallowing things, It would probably take a hell of a long time to do any serious damage, and I would imagine they would be able to suspend it in an environment where it can't actually 'swallow' anything, therefore dying out very quickly.

Well if it started to eat things the rate would go up exponentialy so it would go up pretty fast after abit.
As for containing, you would need to maintain a total vacuum.
Then there is the matter of contianing it, you would need a force bigger then earths gravity keep it from going thru the earth and create this force in a vacume without any matter touching the blackhole.
last problem is, only moment there would be a need to contain a blackhole whould be if hawkins-radiation didnt work and therefore the blackhole wouldnt die.
 

Tom

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Well, I'm not sure how fast the rate would be. The amount of matter contained in an atmosphere within the accelerator is tiny, and wouldn't really add to the gravitational force such a black hole could exert. In fact, the amount of matter created by the collision itself would be incredibly small, and the gravitational field would be miniscule. You could stand next to it for a few years and not feel a thing.

Also, we don't know (although the scientists will have ideas) how the 'black hole' would be affected by the massive magnetic forces inside the accelerator. If you can use these forces to accelerate matter to the speeds required to create the hole in the first place, then I'm pretty certain that you could use the same forces to hold the hole in position, where it can't do any damage.

My personal feeling is that the black hole would be too small to cause any damage. If it didn't dissapate, they'd probably shove it in some fancy box and bury it somewhere, never to be seen :)
 

Scouse

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TBH I think that the earth's gravity would exert a force so the black hole would fall through to the centre of the earth pretty quickly, sucking in tons of matter as it went, and VERY quickly making the earth implode.

I can't think of any force other than gravity that could suspend a black hole in mid-air (or vaccum). In this case, if we tied a large tether to Juipter and pulled it into a geostationary orbit directly above the site of the black hole and at a distance that exactly cancelled out the gravitational pull of the earth then that'd stop it.

Admittedly, it'd make driving a bit hard, but near zero-g sex could be had over one half of the planet, whilst really hard-pressed sex could be had on the other half of the planet (as they'd have both Jupiters and Earths gravity to contend with).

There's only 2 drawbacks that I can think of:

1) We'd have to encase Jupiter in some sort of "globe" as, being gaseous, it'd be difficult to tether and;

2) This is absolute fucking nonsense that'd never work.....




On the other hand, I'd like to announce that I'm hung like a chihuahua :eek:
 

Tom

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You're making the mistake of assuming that, because it would be a black hole, that it would immediately possess a huge gravitational force. It would be absolutely tiny. Think about it. It can't possibly be any more than the sum of its parts, and its parts would be no more than the mass of the particles used to create it. All that it would be able to do would be to swallow anything that came into contact with it. Since it would not have the required mass to actually exert any gravitational forces of any magnitude, it would just sit there, suspended, doing nothing.

Also, if subatomic particles can be accelerated to near-lightspeed velocities by magnetic fields, then why also shouldn't this be applicable to an incredibly small black hole?
 

Munkey

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its the end of the world as we know it and i feel fine?
 

Scouse

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Tom said:
You're making the mistake of assuming that, because it would be a black hole, that it would immediately possess a huge gravitational force. It would be absolutely tiny. Think about it. It can't possibly be any more than the sum of its parts, and its parts would be no more than the mass of the particles used to create it. All that it would be able to do would be to swallow anything that came into contact with it. Since it would not have the required mass to actually exert any gravitational forces of any magnitude, it would just sit there, suspended, doing nothing.

Also, if subatomic particles can be accelerated to near-lightspeed velocities by magnetic fields, then why also shouldn't this be applicable to an incredibly small black hole?

I'm not making that mistake at all. All I'm saying is that because the black hole will be caught by the earths gravitational field then it'll get sucked through all the matter on the way to the centre of the earth....growing as it goes.

As for suspending a black hole in a magnetic field - we're not talking about a normal physical object such as a sub-atomic particle. We're talking about an object that has (supposedly) a complex physical structure which exerts a gravitational, not magnetic, field.

If it doesn't create a magnetic field how are you supposed to capture it using the repulsive forces of another magnetic field?

(I could be wrong 'bout the lack of magnetic field - I think they're purely gravitational objects....)


Anyway - is it worth the risk? If there's even the slightest chance that we'll implode the earth I say "no". - Wait until we've colonised other planets and have self-sustaining societies before we take a risk of such massive proportions, no matter how small that risk is.....
 

sibanac

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Tom said:
You're making the mistake of assuming that, because it would be a black hole, that it would immediately possess a huge gravitational force. It would be absolutely tiny. Think about it. It can't possibly be any more than the sum of its parts, and its parts would be no more than the mass of the particles used to create it. All that it would be able to do would be to swallow anything that came into contact with it. Since it would not have the required mass to actually exert any gravitational forces of any magnitude, it would just sit there, suspended, doing nothing.

Also, if subatomic particles can be accelerated to near-lightspeed velocities by magnetic fields, then why also shouldn't this be applicable to an incredibly small black hole?
It doesnt realy need much mass tho, it could first absorb things that collide with it and aslong as there is an athmosphere there is plenty to absorb dont forget air is matter aswell.
Second thing is since it clearly will have a mass, howerver small, it would be drawn to the earth unless you keep extending a force and so could come in contact with matter by 'falling' onto it
 

sibanac

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Scouse said:
Anyway - is it worth the risk? If there's even the slightest chance that we'll implode the earth I say "no". - Wait until we've colonised other planets and have self-sustaining societies before we take a risk of such massive proportions, no matter how small that risk is.....

Well if it creates a blackhole and doesnt destroy the earth, Steven Hawkings would probably recive a nobel price (since then he would be proven right)
If it does crunch the earth nobody is gone be around to complain :)
 

Tom

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I'm not sure Steven Hawkings is the same guy.

What I'm saying, is that this object will have a physical mass. Regardless of the effect that its structure has on surrounding particles, it will be extremely light, and if magnetic forces are used to accelerate the particles that manufactured the black hole, then those same forces should be able to hold the black hole in suspension, indefinitely.

Also, if it did sink toward the centre of the earth, I can't imagine it taking any less than several hundreds, even thousands, of years, to adversely affect the planet.

Its another doom and gloom story, just like the one where people thought that exploding a nuclear device would cause a chain reaction and destroy the entire planet. Its based on misinformation, rumour, and ignorance (I'm ignorant on the science of it, I'm just using what little I know to construct an argument).

The technology could lead to all kinds of things.
 

Cyradix

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Agree with Tom here. The black hole could be contained within the magnectic field.

But would anyone risk creating and sustaining a black hole.... even a very very very small one.....
 

GekuL

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Correct me if I'm wrong, it's been a while since I thought about any of this.

Any mass will exert a gravitational force on another. It is the size (mass) of the object that determines how powerful that force is. I have a gravitational pull for instance, but it is so tiny as to be irrelevant.
Black holes as we know them are created from the death of massive stars. It is their mass that gives them their massive gravitational pull. In this case the initial mass is going to be tiny, especially when you compare that against what the mass of a giant star is. I would imagine therefore, that we can not compare these to our conventional knowledge of black holes.
 

DaGaffer

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GekuL said:
Correct me if I'm wrong, it's been a while since I thought about any of this.

Any mass will exert a gravitational force on another. It is the size (mass) of the object that determines how powerful that force is. I have a gravitational pull for instance, but it is so tiny as to be irrelevant.
Black holes as we know them are created from the death of massive stars. It is their mass that gives them their massive gravitational pull. In this case the initial mass is going to be tiny, especially when you compare that against what the mass of a giant star is. I would imagine therefore, that we can not compare these to our conventional knowledge of black holes.
Sort of correct, but Quantum black holes are a whole different kettle of cheese. They're not supposed to exist in the universe now (only around the big bang when the laws of nature were different), and they 'evaporate' quite quickly. This is all dragged from memory from Hawking articles I read years ago (and I'm sure there'll be plenty of people on here to correct me :)) but basically the black holes they're talking about here aren't the same as the world devouring monsters of Disney folklore.
 

Jonaldo

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As long as the head scientist doesn't have a hovering robot assistant called Maximillian :(



WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! RUN! RUN!
 

Paradroid

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DaGaffer said:
Sort of correct, but Quantum black holes are a whole different kettle of cheese. They're not supposed to exist in the universe now (only around the big bang when the laws of nature were different), and they 'evaporate' quite quickly. This is all dragged from memory from Hawking articles I read years ago (and I'm sure there'll be plenty of people on here to correct me :)) but basically the black holes they're talking about here aren't the same as the world devouring monsters of Disney folklore.
I remember reading this years ago too (and feeling slightly aghast). I think the real point to consider here is the fact that what they're talking about is "theory", and, they're "testing" these "theories" in physical realms that we dont really understand. I mean what-if?

It's a pretty stupid thing to even consider trying in the first place - it's the equivalent of creating & cultivating potentially leathal cancers in your own body! I think the phrase "don't shit where you eat" is quite apt here.

More missions to mars then?
 

Paradroid

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Tom said:
It can't possibly be any more than the sum of its parts, and its parts would be no more than the mass of the particles used to create it.
I think Tom hit the proverbial nail on the head here when he used the word "possibly" (and "chance" in an earlier posting).

We use quantum theory to help us understand Black Holes, no? Quantum theory involves string theory (strings that we can never see, btw), probabilities, average uncertainties, multiple universes (eleven, I think), equally-likely outcomes, matter disappearing & reappearing, and, a solid dose of the unknown.

Does anyone else think this is a good idea? Shed more light on the facts?
 

tRoG

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"I find it quite funny that an evolved species of ape is trying to work out the mysteries of Creation"
 

SilverHood

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tRoG said:
"I find it quite funny that an evolved species of ape is trying to work out the mysteries of Creation"
Why not? You're not seeing the dolphins doing anything! :)
 

ECA

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Jonaldo said:
As long as the head scientist doesn't have a hovering robot assistant called Maximillian :(



WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! RUN! RUN!

Am i the only person who loves that book?^^
 

Sharma

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tRoG said:
"I find it quite funny that an evolved species of ape is trying to work out the mysteries of Creation"
Or Humans effectively trying to be their own gods.
 

Panda On Smack

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If we evolved from monkeys how come they are still here and arent turning into humans?
 

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