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Discovery of odd stars, suggests new kind of matter


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When I have a few minutes, I'll try to post about the book I was discussing w/ my brother the other day that I'm going to pick up sometime this weekend ... the one discussing the theory that the Tunguska Blast not have been an asteroid at all, but a miniscule black hole that came into contact with the atmosphere. <br /><br />Talk about greasing the cranial gears ...<br /><br />Maybe DrunkenBoxer has some insights he could share. I'd like to hear them as I wade into the book.

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Hmmm. I take it you are talking about that mysterious explosion that hit Siberia around the time of WWI, and leveled the forests for god knows how many miles? And the flash from the blast was also seen in Europe over 1000 miles away.<br /><br />I heard about it, although I dont get out of solitary that often. <img border="0" title="" alt="[big Grin]" src="biggrin.gif" /><br /> <br /> <small>[ April 11, 2002, 02:57 PM: Message edited by: inmate running the asylum ]</small>

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What's that book called Om?<br />And how did they come up with the black hole theory? <br />Why would it (the miniscule black hole) just explode over siberia? Wouldn't it effect the whole atmostphere?<br />What made it explode in the first place?<br />Was there something wrong with the air blast theory? Every pop a water balloon before it reached the ground?

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</font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Om:<br /><strong>When I have a few minutes, I'll try to post about the book I was discussing w/ my brother the other day that I'm going to pick up sometime this weekend ... the one discussing the theory that the Tunguska Blast not have been an asteroid at all, but a miniscule black hole that came into contact with the atmosphere. <br /><br /></strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Om, this is actually a pretty old theory, I wrote a paper on it back in 1974 or so.<br /><br />Basically, back then the theory went that a black hole, tiny but incredibly massive, actually passed through the earth, entering in Tunguska and exiting... well, it could have exited anywhere, depending upon it's trajectory, but would have had to exit in a remote ocean area, so as not to be noticed (or maybe Antarctica?). It might explain why a crater was never discovered despite the fact that trees were levelled for miles. I think it was 1908 when it happened, but I was just a little kid back in 1908, so I can't be sure.<br /> <br /> <small>[ April 12, 2002, 02:21 AM: Message edited by: The Chief ]</small>

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Oh great! First we're hearing of sizable asteroids whizzing by us without anyone having so much as a clue because the sun was in there eyes. Now I have to worry about tiny black holes slammin into us and causing catastrophe at two points on earth!<br /><br />If terrorists ever acquire asteroids or black holes, we'll all be in a world of trouble ... literally. <br /><br />All of this makes me want a beer, but seeing as it's not yet 8:00 a.m. I think I'll do well to wait awhile. Coffee it is! <img border="0" title="" alt="[smile]" src="smile.gif" />

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Happily, Chief, I didn't suggest it was a new theory. <img border="0" title="" alt="[smile]" src="smile.gif" /> I do believe the book in question, though, amplifies upon and/or alters the theory. Hmph. Now I guess I'll HAVE to read it. <img border="0" title="" alt="[smile]" src="smile.gif" /> <br /><br />The whole concept just fit in nicely in context of this and a couple of other cosmic conversations we've had lately. Between that and the fact that I happened to be discussing this very thing with my hermano not 3 days before all seemed like a nice little confluence of circumstances. <br /><br />Thanks for the clarification, though. Pretty cool that you wrote a damn paper about it. In 1974, I was experimenting with writing pornography. Not that 14 year-olds have all that much to say on the subject. In fact, the pursuit of such experience was just about ALL I could think about in those days. <br /><br />Not much has changed, since ... I just don't write about it anymore. Much.<br /><br />*<br /><br />Brave, it's after sunrise. Beer is okay.

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Yeah Om, I might have assumed that the book was presenting the theory as though it were a new hypothesis. Not very scientific of me, huh? But then, you sell more books by pretending it's a new theory, so that's just me being cynical.

Let us know how you like the book. :cheers:

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The Chief,

Just my 2 cents worth here Chief, but I dont find it plausible that anything, let alone a black hole "passed through the earth and exited" the other side. Scientists are saying now that even if the earth is struck by a small meteor or asteroid, that life on earth would be completely destroyed. That didn't happen in the case of the Siberian explosion. Although a flash was allegedly seen in Europe -- apparently no one is around now who can confirm seeing it -- the actual destruction was confined to certain forested areas in Siberia.

Secondly, it also seems to me that there would be two holes in the earth if something passed through, in which case I dont think that any of us would be here. And why wouldnt this black hole have exploded on its initial impact, rather than exploding on the other side of the earth as it exited? The small meteor that made Meteor Crater in Arizona was small by comparison, and a black hole as dense as they are supposed to be, I think would have destroyed the earth's atmosphere if not the entire earth. Its also puzzling to me how the evidence for the meteor that struck Arizona is still evident after hundreds of thousands of years, but yet there is no concrete evidence for what struck Siberia in 1908.

Thirdly, I have seen documentary pictures of the destruction of the Siberian forests involved in that explosion, and it is obvious from the pattern of the destroyed trees, that whatever did the damage exploded ABOVE the forests or upon impact. In other words not passing through the earth from below. To me the destruction of the Siberian forests looked almost identical to the destruction of the forests around Mt. St. Helens, when that volcano exploded a few years ago. Scientists seem to have ruled out a volcano in Siberia, however, as there is apparently no evidence of one being in that area.

Plus from everything I have read about black holes -- its theory of course -- they are not flying through space like meteors. Supposedly because of their density and gravitational pull they are sucking everything, including even light, into a destructive impact with their center. Therefore if a black hole passed through our solar system, it seems to me that all the nine planets and our sun would have been pulled toward its center and nothing would be here now. And I just dont buy into the theory either, that a black hole was flying through space the size of a speck of sand, nor have I ever read such a theory by any reputable scientiest.

Just my 2 cents worth. :)

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Inmate, these are good questions.

Now, I can't offer any pretense toward being an expert on this matter based on a paper I wrote back in 1974 (back before all my brain cells were swallowed up by a black hole), but I can give you a few morsels to chew on, if you wish. I'll try to address your points in the order they were presented, but bear in mind that this is mostly speculation.

1 The earth is struck by small meteors every day, by the hundreds, but they are too small to do any damage, so it's a matter of degree. There are craters on earth from some pretty fair-sized meteors, as you pointed out quite well.

2 A black hole could be sucking up material from the earth faster than the black hole itself is travelling. This would mean that the black hole, though more massive than any meteor, would never come into direct contact with the Earth, so the catastrophic damage could be limited to that which is caused by heat, which might explain the giant fireball, felled trees and yet no lasting impact. The model for this phenomenon would resemble less a collision than the sudden disappearance of a cylinder-shaped core of the earth and it's atmosphere.

3 Imagine passing your open hand through a sand dune. You are collecting some sand, but what sand remains fills up the displaced area as quickly as it is created. This could have happened to the tunnel created by a burrowing black hole. This is one reason why there might be no crater in Tunguska, and also is why most of the San Andreas fault, which is a huge crack in the earth's crust, is not actually a visible crack you can fall into.

4 I think the theory posited that the black hole entered the earth at Tunguska, rather than exiting there, so the phenomena witnessed are consistent with this theory, plausibly.

5 Destruction to the Earth, it's atmosphere and solar system could be solely dependent upon the mass and velocity (possibly very fast indeed) of the black hole. A sufficiently tiny one, moving fast enough, could leave us all living, while boring a tunnel through the earth only a few yards wide, which, having filled up almost completely within seconds of it's creation, might be undetectable in remote, nearly uninhabited Siberia.

6 It may be true that all black holes are relatively stationary, and if this is so, then they whole theory is moot.

But because the universe is so vast, with so many simultaneously arising phenomena, some black holes must inevitably become projectiles, unless it is absolutely impossible for them to do so.

I think it was Carl Sagan who said that, "Unless a phenomenon is specifically precluded by the laws of physics, it is certain to occur."

That Sagan knew his #hit.

Respectfully yours,

The Chief

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Maybe alot of new info has come in concerning blackholes within the last 4 years. But this is how I always thought a black hole was....

'Once a giant star dies and a black hole has formed, all its mass is squeezed into a single point. At this point, both space and time stop. It's very hard for us to imagine a place where mass has no volume and time does not pass, but that's what it is like at the center of a black hole.

The point at the center of a black hole is called a singularity. Within a certain distance of the singularity, the gravitational pull is so strong that nothing--not even light--can escape. That distance is called the event horizon. The event horizon is not a physical boundary but the point-of-no-return for anything that crosses it. When people talk about the size of a black hole, they are referring to the size of the event horizon. The more mass the singularity has, the larger the event horizon.

Many people think that nothing can escape the intense gravity of black holes. If that were true, the whole Universe would get sucked up. Only when something (including light) gets within a certain distance from the black hole, will it not be able to escape. But farther away, things do not get sucked in. Stars and planets at a safe distance will circle around the black hole, much like the motion of the planets around the Sun. The gravitational force on stars and planets orbiting a black hole is the same as when the black hole was a star because gravity depends on how much mass there is--the black hole has the same mass as the star, it's just compressed.

Black holes are truly black. Light rays that get too close bend into, and are trapped by the intense gravity of the black hole. Trapped light rays will never escape. Since black holes do not shine, they are difficult to detect.'

Black Holes

I wouldn't want anything remotely similar to that coming anywhere close to the earth no matter how small.

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unfortunately ryskin, you're not going to be able to get away from them.

There is some confusion about what a black hole really is. Consider a dust particle. If this dust particle is small enough, it would get an event horizon just like giant black holes. Gravity, as you may remember form high school, is a 1/r^2 force (r is the radius from the point mass). As you get closer to an object, it's gravitational pull becomes stronger, no matter how small it is. As you get arbitrarily close, the gravitation becomes arbitrarily large until the pull is too strong and not even light can escape.

The interesting thing to note is that the particle need not even be a singularity, i.e. you need not consider the hypothetical sitiuation of an infinite density point mass. A mass m located at single point produces an event horizon at radius H. No light or information can escape. Now if the mass m were now spread uniformly inside the radius H then an observer outside of the radius H thinks that there is a singularity in the gravitational filed when there really isn't one, although there is no experiment he can perform to determine if there is or isn't a singularity.

So, long story short, black holes are everywhere, just not very big ones. They appear whenever the mass density in a volume goes over a certain limit.

All of the above is classical gravitation which is the only thing that makes sense right now. Quantum Mechanics makes black holes a lot more interesting, but much harder. I can't handle it yet. I'll come back to you in a few years.

As for the balck hole impact theory, i'd say that i'm a disbeliever. If they are saying that the damage was caused by gravitational force then the associated mass would have to be very large asteroid size (in mass) and it would have done much more damage. I'll keep an open ear, but until proven otherwise, it's occam's razor for me.

-DB

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As I recall, it takes a mass of at least 3 times, perhaps 9 times the mass of our sun to overcome botht the strong and weak forces and allow matter to collapse to singularity.

So no matter how tiny the black hole me be (and they are all tiny because they are all a singularity), the event horizon would still be very large, and the gravitational field larger still.

The black hole at the center of our galaxy could have the mass of 30000 suns or more, yet is still an infinitesmal point in space. Of course, it has a large acretion disk around it, and the event horizon is huge, but it's still a miniscule point of nothingness.

I can't imagine how an object with many times the mass (and gravitational attraction) of our sun could pass through the solar system, come in near contact with the earth/moon system, and only scorch a few trees in Siberia. It would also be remarkable that it didn't have a visible acretion disk, that it didn't perturb any orbits, that it didn't suck the atmosphere off our planet, and display any number of effects normally considerd when one is dealing with a gravitational potential that large.

I think that some folks are confusing the relative size of the object with the gravitational effects of such an object.

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That's pretty much where I was until about a week ago, Terry, when my brother brought up the book he's reading. When I ran something along the lines of what you just said by him, he admitted this min-black hole theory kind of took him off guard as well, and went on to say that the "black hole" postulated in this theory is indeed miniscule enough to have had ITSELF disupted by the energy released when it came in contact with the terrestrian atmosphere. From what I understood, he had taken from this book that the black hole "detonated," not that it had passed through the planet.

I'll admit to being rather skeptical myself ... which is why I'm waiting for him to return my e-mail from a couple days ago asking for the name of the book. I'll pass it on upon receipt.

*

DB, I assume your 'simplest explanation,' then, is the one I've carried myself all these years ... that Tunguska was the result of a medium-sized asteroid coming in at a shallow angle and detonating well about the surface? Have to admit, absent some pretty compelling evidence of something else, than one continues to ring most plausibly to me.

Looking forward to seeing if this now-famous book pursuades.

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I just wanted to add that from what I have read about black holes, they are only a theory. No one has ever seen or proven that they really do exist, although according to Einstein's theories they SHOULD exist. Whereas Einstein's theories have never been proven wrong, just like Einstein tweaked Newton's theories, Einstein's theories may also need to be tweaked someday. :D

Because in theory they would even capture light rays moving through space, one can only surmize that they exist in certain areas of outer space. Whereas certain unusual activities in outer space SUGGEST to astronomers that they are present, it has yet to be proven that they in fact do exist. And now we have what I think are somewhat off-the-wall theories, that that is what caused the devastation in Siberia. Sorry, I just dont buy it yet.

This asteroid exploding does make plausible sense, as from photos I have seen of the Siberian devastation, it looked exactly like the devastation at Mt. St. Helens. The forests were stripped in exactly the same way, and laid out in the same type patterns. :D

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