Random science stories that don't warrant their own threads thread Page 3

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  • Bremenacht 30 Sep 2010 17:21:40 19,376 posts
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    mcmonkeyplc wrote:
    stephenb wrote:
    Yeah it's going to be a pretty harsh place. Battered by the solar wind. More importantly without a spin the atmosphere and water would pool at the poles.


    Why? Also doesn't our rotating core provide us with the magnetic field not our spin?

    I think the spin + iron content provides the field, which prevents the solar wind from stripping the atmosphere away (like what is thought to have happened on Mars). There's another force that helps keep the atmosphere in place - can't remember it's name though.
  • stephenb 30 Sep 2010 17:22:34 2,776 posts
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    Bremenacht wrote:
    mcmonkeyplc wrote:
    stephenb wrote:
    Yeah it's going to be a pretty harsh place. Battered by the solar wind. More importantly without a spin the atmosphere and water would pool at the poles.


    Why? Also doesn't our rotating core provide us with the magnetic field not our spin?

    I think the spin + iron content provides the field, which prevents the solar wind from stripping the atmosphere away (like what is thought to have happened on Mars). There's another force that helps keep the atmosphere in place - can't remember it's name though.

    gravity?

    PSN : v--WEDGE--v

  • Deleted user 30 September 2010 17:24:18
    Bobby Koticks wallet.
  • Bremenacht 30 Sep 2010 17:25:10 19,376 posts
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    I think spin also keeps the core molten, which helps the field, which helps the spin...

    I can't remember how it works, tbh.
  • grey_matters 30 Sep 2010 17:26:40 3,860 posts
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    stephenb wrote:
    mcmonkeyplc wrote:
    stephenb wrote:
    Yeah it's going to be a pretty harsh place. Battered by the solar wind. More importantly without a spin the atmosphere and water would pool at the poles.


    Why? Also doesn't our rotating core provide us with the magnetic field not our spin?


    If the planet isn't spinning it's very likely it's core isn't either. It may very well be molten and active but not necessarily generating a field.

    Sorry my post is obviously completely speculative but on re reading it comes across as though I have all ready been there :) That was not my intention.

    However if there is liquid water and the planet isn't spinning you are going to have two big fuck off oceans at it's north and south poles.
    Surely it is spinning. Just very slowly. If it wasn't, then as it orbits the star, the other side of the planet would get light too. Dunno if it's enough to counter the problems you mention though.
  • Bremenacht 30 Sep 2010 17:28:12 19,376 posts
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    stephenb wrote:
    Bremenacht wrote:
    mcmonkeyplc wrote:
    stephenb wrote:
    Yeah it's going to be a pretty harsh place. Battered by the solar wind. More importantly without a spin the atmosphere and water would pool at the poles.


    Why? Also doesn't our rotating core provide us with the magnetic field not our spin?

    I think the spin + iron content provides the field, which prevents the solar wind from stripping the atmosphere away (like what is thought to have happened on Mars). There's another force that helps keep the atmosphere in place - can't remember it's name though.

    gravity?
    Nah - another one (in addition to gravity).
  • stephenb 30 Sep 2010 17:34:11 2,776 posts
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    Bremenacht wrote:
    stephenb wrote:
    Bremenacht wrote:
    mcmonkeyplc wrote:
    stephenb wrote:
    Yeah it's going to be a pretty harsh place. Battered by the solar wind. More importantly without a spin the atmosphere and water would pool at the poles.


    Why? Also doesn't our rotating core provide us with the magnetic field not our spin?

    I think the spin + iron content provides the field, which prevents the solar wind from stripping the atmosphere away (like what is thought to have happened on Mars). There's another force that helps keep the atmosphere in place - can't remember it's name though.

    gravity?
    Nah - another one (in addition to gravity).

    :) I think magnetic field & gravitational mass will do it tbh. @grey_matters yeah that's a good point cos they said one side is permanently dark.

    How the hell do they work all that out from a slight wobble in a star?

    PSN : v--WEDGE--v

  • Deleted user 30 September 2010 17:43:55
    I think there are other techniques now, like blocking all the stars light, analysing the light of the star as a planet passes it. Its remarkable stuff and it all makes the 10 year old within very happy. It amazes me that we have found other planets, and now potentially habitable ones. The consequences will never be the same™.
  • Bremenacht 30 Sep 2010 19:14:37 19,376 posts
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    stephenb wrote:
    Bremenacht wrote:
    stephenb wrote:
    Bremenacht wrote:
    mcmonkeyplc wrote:
    stephenb wrote:
    Yeah it's going to be a pretty harsh place. Battered by the solar wind. More importantly without a spin the atmosphere and water would pool at the poles.


    Why? Also doesn't our rotating core provide us with the magnetic field not our spin?

    I think the spin + iron content provides the field, which prevents the solar wind from stripping the atmosphere away (like what is thought to have happened on Mars). There's another force that helps keep the atmosphere in place - can't remember it's name though.

    gravity?
    Nah - another one (in addition to gravity).

    :) I think magnetic field & gravitational mass will do it tbh.
    Centripetal force! That's what I was thinking of. Funny how going for a walk brings things back, yet sitting staring at Google searchbox or Wiki often doesn't.
  • ecu 30 Sep 2010 19:20:30 77,234 posts
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    Rage_Quit_Rob wrote:
    Completely correct as you are (the chances of us ever being able to traverse such distances are slim)

    If we last long enough, we'll do it.
  • Deleted user 30 September 2010 19:24:10
    The last thing I read about travelling really quickly, was the ion thruster (how Hollywood is that) which will accelerate you really really slowly, but infinitely, and as such (no friction) you can achieve speeds much faster than with fuel rockets.

    What else is there nowadays? That was years ago when I read it. I wonder if it is actually possible.
  • mcmonkeyplc 30 Sep 2010 19:28:38 39,515 posts
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    Bremenacht wrote:
    mcmonkeyplc wrote:
    stephenb wrote:
    Yeah it's going to be a pretty harsh place. Battered by the solar wind. More importantly without a spin the atmosphere and water would pool at the poles.


    Why? Also doesn't our rotating core provide us with the magnetic field not our spin?

    I think the spin + iron content provides the field, which prevents the solar wind from stripping the atmosphere away (like what is thought to have happened on Mars). There's another force that helps keep the atmosphere in place - can't remember it's name though.

    It's definetly the core that does the magnetic field. I'm not entirely sure what the spinning does for us apart from generate more gravity?

    Come and get it cumslingers!

  • Deleted user 30 September 2010 19:30:05
    Has a massive effect on the climate, which would in turn have a large effect on the potential arrival and development of any organisms.
  • Bremenacht 1 Oct 2010 14:33:44 19,376 posts
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    mcmonkeyplc wrote:
    Bremenacht wrote:
    mcmonkeyplc wrote:
    stephenb wrote:
    Yeah it's going to be a pretty harsh place. Battered by the solar wind. More importantly without a spin the atmosphere and water would pool at the poles.


    Why? Also doesn't our rotating core provide us with the magnetic field not our spin?

    I think the spin + iron content provides the field, which prevents the solar wind from stripping the atmosphere away (like what is thought to have happened on Mars). There's another force that helps keep the atmosphere in place - can't remember it's name though.

    It's definetly the core that does the magnetic field. I'm not entirely sure what the spinning does for us apart from generate more gravity?
    I don't know about what it does for gravity (doesn't mass alone do that?), but I found a Wiki for the dynamo effect, which explains the relationship. It doesn't explain how relevant the composition of core materials affects magentism or spin, although another wiki has more info on it. Worth following the link on there to read about the Coriolis effect too, although the stuff on there doesn't describe the effect on the core. My appreciation for the science of The Core has gone way up as result of my reading :)
  • ChocNut 2 Oct 2010 17:13:11 2,185 posts
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    So let me get this straight. Some twat posts that he's off to the military and people swarm around for pages to congratulate and glorify this violent endeavor but discovering an earth like planet doesn't deserve it's own thread?

    WTF people. W.T.F.
  • Ged42 2 Oct 2010 17:16:56 7,773 posts
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    Well that didn't deserve it's own thread, it was just forced upon us.
  • sirtacos 5 Oct 2010 16:15:59 7,348 posts
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    Speaking of alien intelligence, but closer to home:

    Are ants, by all intents and purposes, intelligent?

    Ants learn, teach, build, farm*, rear 'cattle', wage wars, take slaves and generally exhibit extremely sophisticated behaviour by any species' standards, which makes their existence as small insects incredible.

    I'd love to know more about how their knowledge has spread - obviously it looks like collective Borg/Geth-like intelligence to some degree, but I'd like to know how far the abilities of individuals extend. If it turns out that they're dimwitted individually but become geniuses in large groups, I really want to know how the fuck that works.

    *Some species even go as far as smoking or fumigating fungi with bacteria to ward off parasites.

    From a different site:

    "Under the care of the ants, the aphids thrive. The ants gain the aphid honeydew 'excrement'; the aphids gain protectors who also act as 'chauffeurs'. However, the ants, not the aphids, appear to control the relationship. This is demonstrated occasionally when a winged female aphid is hatched, and then tries to fly off to a different host plant, away from the ants. It is then that the ants show their authority by seizing the female and carrying her back into their nest."

    And apparently, like sharks, they've hardly evolved at all for about 60 million years.

    Ant queens exhibit *some* degree of individualism/selfishness

    Also, I remember reading that a small part of certain ant species' colonies is made up of ants who are utterly useless and live on 'welfare' - they stumble about, getting in the way and doing what they feel like, but the colony still tolerates, feeds and protects them. Which I find odd for an insect supposedly characterized by slavish devotion to the group.
  • localnotail 5 Oct 2010 16:25:17 23,093 posts
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    Pheromones are powerful things. Let's just hope They never find out how to control us by using them
    /drifts off towards Subway, aimlessly

    Speaking of ants: How cool are these robot swarms that can build Wifi nets in disaster areas for rescue comms?

    A strange game. The only winning move is not to play.

  • localnotail 5 Oct 2010 16:28:10 23,093 posts
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    Also: "Science is Vital" rally, Saturday, London Activate, execute, geek army.

    A strange game. The only winning move is not to play.

  • grey_matters 5 Oct 2010 16:39:39 3,860 posts
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    In the same vein as the ant intelligence (probably half a million steps simpler on the intelligence spectrum) but just as fascinating:

    Slime mould intelligence

    and another half a million steps simpler:

    Oil-drop intelligence
  • ecu 5 Oct 2010 16:41:17 77,234 posts
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    Speaking of ants, I've always found this phenomenon pretty interesting.


    An ant mill is a phenomenon where a group of army ants separated from the main foraging party lose the pheromone track and begin to follow one another, forming a continuously rotating circle. The ants will eventually die of exhaustion. This has been reproduced in laboratories and the behaviour has also been produced in ant colony simulations. This phenomenon is a side effect of the self-organizing structure of ant colonies. Each ant follows the ant in front of it, and this will work until something goes wrong and an ant mill forms. An ant mill was first described by William Beebe who observed a mill 1,200 feet (365 m) in circumference. It took each ant 2.5 hours to make one revolution. Similar phenomena have been noted in processionary caterpillars and fish.
  • sirtacos 5 Oct 2010 16:58:00 7,348 posts
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    From the comments "I bet one ant started it as a prank" :D (ecureuil's link)

    So I guess they can be incredibly stupid, even in large groups. Which raises more questions still...

    grey_matters, those links are fascinating.
    Here's a good comment from the oil droplet article:

    the article is attempting to describe how order can arise from a chemical based system.
    It visually represents the deconstruction of sentient type intelligence to its constitute chemical parts.
    In other words we can perhaps better understand our human drives if we understand that our brains, or regions therein, are attempting chemical balance either locally or across regions.
    This would begin to explain how our conscious mind moves and operates using 'hard-wired' memories to act on external impulses to achieve this balance.
    It does not attempt to mimic abstract intelligence, such as tool use, this would require a system of such chemical balance seeking systems - something akin to neurons?

    Especially insightful considering the article's closing sentence:

    "But the chemical behaviour could also offer an explanation for the apparently intelligent behaviour of the slime mould Physarum polycephalum, which 10 years ago was shown to possess similar maze-solving abilities by Toshiyuki Nakagaki"

    Wow, this stuff makes the emergence of human consciousness seem straightforward.
  • Ged42 7 Oct 2010 00:20:01 7,773 posts
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    After 6 years of work, the Apollo 11 moon landings footage has been digitally cleaned up. To the best quality they can considering the state of the original footage.

    News story and clip
  • ecu 7 Oct 2010 00:25:08 77,234 posts
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    Pretty impressive, it looks good.
  • Khanivor 7 Oct 2010 01:04:18 41,115 posts
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    Ants are fucking awesome.
  • Khanivor 7 Oct 2010 01:05:38 41,115 posts
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    ecureuil wrote:
    Pretty impressive, it looks good.

    Cool the way you can now see the mannie's face inside the helmet!
  • sirtacos 10 Oct 2010 07:47:29 7,348 posts
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    A lot of what we see is constructed by the brain, apparently.

    "Our brains are constantly distorting what we see. Using imagination, our brains take a bold shortcut; we guess what's out there from past experience rather to having to build up the image in our mind each time from scratch. [...] The brain doesn't just allow us to see what's out there, it actually invents much of it."
  • Fab4 10 Oct 2010 07:50:14 6,161 posts
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    Yep, its what allows people to see the face of Jesus in a tortilla.
  • localnotail 11 Oct 2010 13:28:17 23,093 posts
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    VSS Enterpoop* solo test flight a success. Prospect of recreational space travel just got a bit more real.

    *sorry, too much Bloom County.

    A strange game. The only winning move is not to play.

  • Fab4 12 Oct 2010 14:13:38 6,161 posts
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    Computer makes up its own beliefs

    One step towards Skynet :)
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