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Old 07-21-2016, 11:22 PM #321
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rivem View Post
Thanks Hap.

My fear is that society doesn't seem to really take "wakeup calls" from unusual disasters seriously. Usually after a serious natural disaster, people just rebuild the exact same way with a few defenses for what happened added in.

If you'd have asked me almost four years ago what I thought of Hurricane Sandy, I'd have said that it was a serious wakeup call that important places are at risk due to climate change, and new legislation to improve the climate would be happening. 2016 rolls around, and that part of the country has mostly rebuilt with a few more flood precautions.

In the smaller scale, cities like Las Vegas and Phoenix have encountered severe water shortages several times already. The only thing they do is put temporary restrictions in place and lift them when immediate danger has passed. Water recycling is just barely happening, and they haven't considered removing golf courses or other big water wastes.

Another issue that's getting bigger the more we put it off is literally all of US infrastructure. People tend to worry about roads, but that's the least of our problems. Look at a place like Flint, MI. We've still got lead pipes in a lot of cities! Most of them are simply covered with a corrosion inhibitor that can be taken out by a minor fluctuation in p.H. or dissolved solids. Sewage systems in some other cities are almost as old as the cities themselves. People worry about water quality, but there still haven't been movements to modernize old parts of our infrastructure unless there's a massive panic like in Flint. Maybe this will change soon.

Anyway, that's getting a bit off topic, but I feel like it's this sort of quality of life stuff getting improved that will allow people to gain experience, team up, and seriously get to space.
Agreed! Our priorities aren't in the right direction, that's sure and any hope of us becoming a space travelling species won't exist until we figure out problems here on Earth. I think our first step should be to stop current wars and work on educating, rebuilding and learning as much about our environments as possible so we know what to expect when the worse happens!

-Alex


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Old 07-22-2016, 12:45 AM #322
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

Climate change was a settled issue back in the 1970s, but large corporations that would be burdened by the changes needed to mitigate it have spent a lot of money bringing to the fore climate deniers who have actually managed to change the narrative. It's funny that a few people with a degree in chemistry or other sciences have been able to make it an issue up for debate now. The vast majority of Scientists still know that the problem has not gone away.
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Old 07-22-2016, 01:14 AM #323
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

The important thing about climate changes and resulting sea level rises are a SLOW proces compared to human technical development.

It would be fairly silly to assume that in 100 years we cannot deal with a metre of sea level rise. 100 years is a very long time for technological development.

Just for the idea: Commercial triode valves have been available for less than 100 years. A triode is comparable in function to a transistor, and was the size of a brake lightbulb on a car. Nowadays there are a billion of these on a mainstream CPU. Top-end CPU's and GPU's are around the 10 billion mark right now, and physically smaller than the first triode valves.

Not everything scales that well obviously, but there is still a bit of realism to be applied here. I live in the netherlands, a good part of which is actually a few meters below sea level as it is (and was 50 years ago). With proper technology this is perfectly manageable today, and there is no reason to presume that a city a few meters below sea level would cease to be. Last time i checked amsterdam was still there

The important thing to learn from this is that the cause of the change is irrelevant. If the same ocean level rise came about due to orbital shift, increased solar output or whatever, the way to deal with it would be mostly the same.
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Old 07-22-2016, 01:49 AM #324
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

Climate change is more than sea-level rise. It also has wide ranging consequences from severe droughts and desertification, to intense heat waves.

Of course, the scariest part is the potential for a positive feedback climate change. Warming oceans melt ice and release methane deposits leading to more climate change. Climate change alone isn't the kind of thing that would doom the human race, but it puts on the pressure for sure.
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Old 07-22-2016, 02:13 AM #325
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

Comparing the coastline of The Netherlands to that of the gulf coast on America is silly on it's face. The Netherlands have been reclaiming land from the ocean for a long time and the coast line is much smaller by comparison. It is also the poorest countries that are going to feel this pressure from sea level rise cause by green house gases from richer, more industrialized countries.
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Old 07-23-2016, 01:27 AM #326
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

Well, one of the doom scenarios often produced are pictures of cities submerged to some extent as would be caused by ocean level rise (often assuming -nothing- is done to mitigate this problem, just draw all land under 2 meters as water).

Where the dutch situation is concerned: It's not only the coastline, but also the rivers that have water levels above the surrounding landcape. A cross section of a river here looks like an M - two tall dikes with water in between and lower lying and around it in many parts of the country. A difference of 4 meters between river level and ground level around it is not unheard of.

Obviously there are other issues with climate change, some bad, some good.

But if it's flooding you are worried around come to holland and have a look at how to deal with that. It's quite amazing to drive on a dike-road along a river and then drive down 5 meters to someones doorstep, at least to many foreign visitors.

As for the coastline being small, about half of the circumference of the country is sea, so that's not really true. If you add on the river banks to the systems in place would be sufficient to have the netherlands as an island several meters below ocean level.

It is, however, expensive. Not expensive in the sense that the US could not afford it, but for poor nations it's a different story. Then again, most poor countries don't go about reclaiming vast amounts of land from the sea just because it can be done and a bit of extra farmland is nice to have even if it takes a world class water turning to be built.
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Old 07-24-2016, 04:03 AM #327
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

We are all we've got. Pretty amazing how small we really are!



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Old 07-24-2016, 04:33 AM #328
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

Four billion miles is an inch in interstellar space. Pretty amazing we are even visible at all.
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Old 07-24-2016, 03:44 PM #329
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

It's even well within the solar system, somewhere around the distance to nepture - not sure what probe that image is from.

Then again you'd expect earth to look small. Jupiter is gigantic, almost a billion kilometers away and appears as a tiny spec in the night sky from earth. It's still brighter than any star (exept sol) by a bit, but it's not much.
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Old 07-25-2016, 08:12 PM #330
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Benm View Post
not sure what probe that image is from.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pale_Blue_Dot

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2pfwY2TNehw
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Old 07-25-2016, 09:12 PM #331
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

I remember those vidicon tubes with color filters to produce color images. It was state of the art back in the 1970s. They are very crude compared to the later CCD imaging devices and CMOS devices as well. A television camera of that era contained three such vidicons with two filters for red and blue. The third color was unnecessary as it could be derived by the angles of the other two. I find it fascinating that the Voyager 1 took 13 years to get to the place where it took that picture.
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Old 07-26-2016, 12:43 AM #332
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

It's quite amazing what they did with technology that's now decades old. In 50 years they will probably look upon what we are doing with similar feelings.

They flew to the moon on something about equivalent in performance to an arduino.

This does not mean that you could slap an arduino nano somewhere into a spacecraft and make it work though - i'm not sure how those little atmel chips would deal with radiation and having your firmware erased en route is not a good thing. On the upside you could bring thousands of them for the same mass/space as the apollo system
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Old 07-26-2016, 03:56 PM #333
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Talking Re: Space Discussion Thread

My thoughts on interstellar travel focus on one aspect: WE MUST DO IT IF WE ARE NOT GOING TO GO EXTINCT.


The earth, the sun, well, they will not last forever. Yes, we might have a few billion years before the sun converts to a red giant, etc...but we do not know how long before an asteroid analogous to what wiped out the dinosaurs, or larger, whacks us into oblivion in the interim.


That means that we KNOW, we, as a species, will disappear w/o a trace, unless we use the time we DO have, to figure out how to colonize other worlds.


So, yes, the logistics ARE daunting.

The TIME required to traverse the distances involved are mind boggling....and we ARE looking at the potential for the colonization of other worlds to be analogous to mankind's colonization of THIS world.


IE: Our ancestors came from Africa in waves, and, each wave had varied success, over millions of years....eventually inhabiting almost all parts of our planet.


So, just as some English settlers brought their families to the "New World", the earth's settlers will bring THEIR families to other "New Worlds".


The colonists will in turn send their descendants out to yet more new worlds...spreading out through the stars in waves of exploration and colonization...as our ancestor's descendants spread across this planet.

Some, as expected, will stay...and never leave the world they colonized...and, others, will leave on new adventures.


I don't think we will travel faster than light...and I don't think the energies required to warp space will be practical for propulsion...but, then again, perhaps new scientific breakthroughs will find dark matter fission or whatever stuff we can't imagine yet, to work.


With space expanding, and light itself..."tacking into it", the way a ship can sail faster than the wind propelling it, might work for example, etc...but, with what we know TODAY, light speed is the speed limit.

That means even telling those behind what you find gets difficult.

If it takes 100 years at light speed to GET somewhere and send back a message at lightspeed...no one back home gets the message until ~ 200 years after you left.

"You" in the above scenario means you, and your kids, and their kids, and their kids, et al, etc...and the people back home where you left from are also long gone, by the time your post card arrives at lightspeed.


After all that, its just logistics: Working out how to survive long space journeys, and the establishment of colonies, both physically and psychologically.

The "kids" who end up on these new planets would need to know how to colonize it and then leave it to colonize the next one eventually.

This means an ENORMOUS educational and research requirement for these colonists. Enough "Professors" and not too many "Gilligans"...or they are doomed.


Just as early settlers on earth had to be experts at woodcraft, textiles, hunting, and politics, etc, to survive, so too will these new colonists.

The difference is that the American colonists for example saw woods with some different trees and berries and wildlife, they did not see different gravity or atmosphere or lifeforms fundamentally different than English counterparts.

Skills that don't yet have names may be critical to survival on new worlds...and the ability to adapt to these differences will be critical. That means the ability to conduct research and fabrication and adjust behavior, etc, as needed.



It might TAKE millions of years to figure out HOW to do what is needed....we have SO MUCH yet to learn about fundamental physics for example, but, the longest journeys start with but a single step.

We best get steppin.


Last edited by Teej; 07-26-2016 at 04:09 PM.
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Old 07-26-2016, 04:55 PM #334
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teej View Post
My thoughts on interstellar travel focus on one aspect: WE MUST DO IT IF WE ARE NOT GOING TO GO EXTINCT.


The earth, the sun, well, they will not last forever. Yes, we might have a few billion years before the sun converts to a red giant, etc...but we do not know how long before an asteroid analogous to what wiped out the dinosaurs, or larger, whacks us into oblivion in the interim.


That means that we KNOW, we, as a species, will disappear w/o a trace, unless we use the time we DO have, to figure out how to colonize other worlds.


So, yes, the logistics ARE daunting.

The TIME required to traverse the distances involved are mind boggling....and we ARE looking at the potential for the colonization of other worlds to be analogous to mankind's colonization of THIS world.


IE: Our ancestors came from Africa in waves, and, each wave had varied success, over millions of years....eventually inhabiting almost all parts of our planet.


So, just as some English settlers brought their families to the "New World", the earth's settlers will bring THEIR families to other "New Worlds".


The colonists will in turn send their descendants out to yet more new worlds...spreading out through the stars in waves of exploration and colonization...as our ancestor's descendants spread across this planet.

Some, as expected, will stay...and never leave the world they colonized...and, others, will leave on new adventures.


I don't think we will travel faster than light...and I don't think the energies required to warp space will be practical for propulsion...but, then again, perhaps new scientific breakthroughs will find dark matter fission or whatever stuff we can't imagine yet, to work.


With space expanding, and light itself..."tacking into it", the way a ship can sail faster than the wind propelling it, might work for example, etc...but, with what we know TODAY, light speed is the speed limit.

That means even telling those behind what you find gets difficult.

If it takes 100 years at light speed to GET somewhere and send back a message at lightspeed...no one back home gets the message until ~ 200 years after you left.

"You" in the above scenario means you, and your kids, and their kids, and their kids, et al, etc...and the people back home where you left from are also long gone, by the time your post card arrives at lightspeed.


After all that, its just logistics: Working out how to survive long space journeys, and the establishment of colonies, both physically and psychologically.

The "kids" who end up on these new planets would need to know how to colonize it and then leave it to colonize the next one eventually.

This means an ENORMOUS educational and research requirement for these colonists. Enough "Professors" and not too many "Gilligans"...or they are doomed.


Just as early settlers on earth had to be experts at woodcraft, textiles, hunting, and politics, etc, to survive, so too will these new colonists.

The difference is that the American colonists for example saw woods with some different trees and berries and wildlife, they did not see different gravity or atmosphere or lifeforms fundamentally different than English counterparts.

Skills that don't yet have names may be critical to survival on new worlds...and the ability to adapt to these differences will be critical. That means the ability to conduct research and fabrication and adjust behavior, etc, as needed.



It might TAKE millions of years to figure out HOW to do what is needed....we have SO MUCH yet to learn about fundamental physics for example, but, the longest journeys start with but a single step.

We best get steppin.

I'm not too worried about an asteroid impact wiping out our society. Within 50+ years we should easily have the tech to deflect civilization ending asteroids. I think the real 'timer' is related to the sun itself. As it fuses hydrogen into helium the core gets denser. This causes the core temperature to rise and the rate of fusion to increase. Scientists estimate that the sun will be 10% more luminous in 1 billion years.

This Is What the End of All Time Looks Like | Smart News | Smithsonian

600 million years: Thanks to the sun’s increasing luminosity messing with the carbon cycle, all plants that utilize C3 photosynthesis (~99 percent of present-day species) will die. (Talk about putting climate change into perspective . . .)


If our civilization (assuming it's still around) isn't capable of interstellar travel 600 million years from now, I honestly think we don't deserve to go on. Within that amount of time we should have colonized much of the solar system and set up manufacturing bases in the asteroid belt. We'd be able to construct massive interstellar arc ships from the materials in the asteroids. These might take hundreds of years to reach the nearest stars, but they'd basically be built like cities with their own internal ecosystems and such.
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Old 07-26-2016, 05:26 PM #335
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

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Originally Posted by Razako View Post
If our civilization (assuming it's still around) isn't capable of interstellar travel 600 million years from now, I honestly think we don't deserve to go on. Within that amount of time we should have colonized much of the solar system and set up manufacturing bases in the asteroid belt. We'd be able to construct massive interstellar arc ships from the materials in the asteroids. These might take hundreds of years to reach the nearest stars, but they'd basically be built like cities with their own internal ecosystems and such.
Massive starships like this are likely going to be the only way to get civilization to other star systems without near light speed or FTL technology. They could use some stasis technology or keep a multi-generational crew. If they were big enough to carry enough biodiversity for a healthy population, they'd likely be underway for thousands of years, so ships like this will have to be amazingly reliable.

I wouldn't say this kind of space travel is worth it unless the inevitable end of life on Earth gets close without any technology using more advanced physics.

Plus, we really need to identify suitable planets if we're going to send people on any type of interstellar journey, so interstellar probes with near light speed or FTL propulsion may very well still be necessary in the near future to keep starships from falling apart before they find a suitable planet.
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Old 07-26-2016, 05:50 PM #336
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Default Re: Space Discussion Thread

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Originally Posted by Rivem View Post
Massive starships like this are likely going to be the only way to get civilization to other star systems without near light speed or FTL technology. They could use some stasis technology or keep a multi-generational crew. If they were big enough to carry enough biodiversity for a healthy population, they'd likely be underway for thousands of years, so ships like this will have to be amazingly reliable.

I wouldn't say this kind of space travel is worth it unless the inevitable end of life on Earth gets close without any technology using more advanced physics.

Plus, we really need to identify suitable planets if we're going to send people on any type of interstellar journey, so interstellar probes with near light speed or FTL propulsion may very well still be necessary in the near future to keep starships from falling apart before they find a suitable planet.
Yeah.

We still have about 500million-1billion years left here before we gotta move out! I had this idea in my mind. Imagine if we develop enough technology to transport Earth to another star? How cool would that be? Like pyshically move it to another system habitable to life? Technology progresses very quickly and within 500million years it may be possible!

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