the big bang

The non amateur stuff. Hawking, black holes, that sort of thing

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cowait
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Post by cowait »

I don't disagree. Given the vast distances involved any form of inter stella travel would have to be done at hugh velocities to make it even faintly practical. Not impossible though. As for inter-galactic travel........?

Of course given the development of technology I am sure we will eventually send exploratory missions to other solar systems. Are there any groups suggesting this?
joe
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Post by joe »

We are then looking at a time in the future when "people" leave Earth to explore new worlds (to coin a phrase) who will never return, probably never report back or expect a reply and never even see a new world...'cos they will be dead. Their children will have to do the discovering. I hope by then we will have invented a decent extraterrestrial toilet.

Regards,
200mm Newtonian, OMC140, ETX90, 15x70 Binoculars.
cowait
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Post by cowait »

I was thinking of un-manned probes, but even they would be a 'more than one generation project'. The Casinni/Huygens probe has taken 7 years to arrive and it has only gone to Saturn.
John Flannery
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Post by John Flannery »

yes, we've a long way to go. For a bit of a diversion recently at a club meeting I did a very, very rough calculation of how it will take for Voyager 1 to get to a point where it will be one light-day from Earth -- another 15 years! So, that's 43 years from launch in 1977 to get to that point! Staggering figures really. Just to add, the calculation was based on the velocity/distance measurements in the table on the "Where are they now" page of www.heavens-above.com -- no account was taken of Voyager 1 slowing down, etc. Have fun!

all the best for the weekend,

John
"It's a planet full of traffic lights and traffic light abuse" (Celebrate -- An Emotional Fish)
chris ide
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Post by chris ide »

hi all ,
just to stir things up a little more (not that we will ever no)if the big bang took place at one moment in time ,that surely means our expanding universe was created almost straight away, which in turn must mean that there must be solar systems the same as ours in time(since the universe was created)now comes the crunch , the only solar system we understand is our own(very limited as we are still not sure if there is life on any of our planets /moons or even if there has been in the past )so maybe just maybe every star we see that is like our own sun has 7 planets orbiting it .and on one of those planets someone is sitting at a desk typing into a computer and putting his or her point over about life on other planets, after all the only way to gauge this is surely our own solar system.
sweet dreams
chris
chris ide
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Post by chris ide »

hi all again ,
i would just like to add that i dont believe in little green men and ufos, and never will unless it becomes proven beyond all doubt.

chris
nealeh
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Re: Hurtling Thru' Space

Post by nealeh »

stella wrote:Yes, the Earth is moving through space, but as you say, we need a reference point against which to measure it. The Earth is orbiting the Sun at about 29.8 km/second, relative to the Sun. The Sun (and its family of planets) is believed to be moving at 19.5 km/second towards a point in the constellation of Hercules. This is measured relative to the centre of our Milky Way galaxy.
:roll:
I've always rather liked Monty Python's Galaxy Song to put things into perspective:
Eric Idle & John Du Prez (for the 'Meaning of Life' album) wrote:Just remember that you're standing on a planet that's evolving
And revolving at 900 miles an hour
That's orbiting at 19 miles a second, so it's reckoned
A sun that is the source of all our power
The sun and you and me, and all the stars that we can see
Are moving at a million miles a day
In an outer spiral arm, at 40,000 miles an hour
Of the galaxy we call the Milky Way

Our galaxy itself contains 100 billion stars
It's 100,000 light-years side-to-side
It bulges in the middle, 16,000 light-years thick
But out by us it's just 3000 light-years wide
We're 30,000 light-years from galactic central point
We go round every 200 million years
And our galaxy is only one of millions of billions
In this amazing and expanding universe

The universe itself keeps on expanding and expanding
In all of the directions it can whiz
As fast as it can go, at the speed of light you know
Twelve million miles a minute and that's the fastest speed there is
So remember, when you're feeling very small and insecure
How amazingly unlikely is your birth
And pray that there's intelligent life somewhere up in space
Because there's b****r all down here on Earth
Definitely worth buying the album for this track alone!
Cheers,
--
Neale
Insanity is hereditary, you get it from your children
joe
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Post by joe »

Neale,

Excellent. Forgot about that.
200mm Newtonian, OMC140, ETX90, 15x70 Binoculars.
cowait
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Re: Hurtling Thru' Space

Post by cowait »

stella wrote:Yes, the Earth is moving through space, but as you say, we need a reference point against which to measure it. The Earth is orbiting the Sun at about 29.8 km/second, relative to the Sun. The Sun (and its family of planets) is believed to be moving at 19.5 km/second towards a point in the constellation of Hercules. This is measured relative to the centre of our Milky Way galaxy.
:roll:

And where does that leave the centre of our galaxy in relation to.........what?

Is the assumption that at the centre of out galaxy we will be at a standstill in relation to 'everything else' ? If so why ? Can any place be considered to be truely stationary? Any reference point is surely arbitary.
From our stand point on earth it looks like everything revolves around us. We know now that is not the case even though it was believed to be the case for centuries.
joe
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Post by joe »

Hi cowait,

If memory serves... our galaxy and our neighbours in the Local Group are moving towards the Virgo cluster and it and us are in turn moving together towards an unseen massive structure called The Great Attractor. It is all arbitry as you suggest but I suppose we have to make a reference to something eventually otherwise we will be dancing around as much as the galaxies seem to be.

Regards,
200mm Newtonian, OMC140, ETX90, 15x70 Binoculars.
cowait
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Post by cowait »

The great Attractor ?

I swear I saw her standing at the bar the other night, judging by the number of blokes hanging on her every word.
Cliff
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Post by Cliff »

Dear al
I have to admit that SETI and the likes are not my favourite topics.
When I first became an enthusiastic planet observer the only know planets were those in our planetary system. one of the attractions of planet observing then was it was possible to observe all known planets with relatively modest telescopes. Of course in recent years more than a hundred planets orbitting other stars way beyond our own solar system have now been discovered. Although I do not think much in the way of direct observations of these exasolar planets (or whatever they call 'em) have been made as yet, I am prepared to accept these funny planets probably really do exist. The extrapolaion now is that there are probably billions or even trillions of these planets out there somewhere. The next extrapolation is that therefore there must be one helluv' a lot more life and even a lot of "intelligent" life.
I have just been reading some interesting things in a New Scientist which suggest that even the "top" scientists do not entirely agree what exactly actually constitutes real life. That being so I wonder if they are totally agreed as to what constitutes intelligence? However, someone on the chatline may know something enlightening.
Whatever, my understanding is that there are several million different species of life "living" on our Earth. I would ask the question how many of those several million species can we (humans) satisfactorily communicate with, in a useful worthwhile manner? I think there may well be quite a few species we can communicate with in a fashion, but probably only to a very limited extent! Of course some will say non of the millions of other Earth species are intelligent. But it also occurs to me that possibly the other species we have had the most success properly communicating with are actually those species that have been domesticated by humans. I would suggest that humans have had quite a long time already during wich we could have communicated with other Earth species, but we ain't made much progress really. Of course some will say we have not been able to communicate properly with other earth species because in the past no one bothered to try much. They might say such past indifference should not be a deterrent to anyone trying to contact\communicate with any possible extraterrestrials or whatever they call 'em. I am afraid I do not go along with that philosophy.
I cannot help wondering if the reality is that we haven't got a "cat" in hell's chance of communicating with those on other planets until we have domesticated them. A form of colonialisation - recalling the good old days of the British Emopire perhaps, or a new American Empire, or even Chinese or other up and coming nation?
If anyone really wants to communicate with so-called intelligent life in outer space I think we will need to send out cosmonauts of the same ilk as the Conquistadors who literally walked all over the native population.
One problem is though that the Conquistadors also seemed to be involved in quite a lot of infighting amongst themselves.
Someone as already suggested that long distance space travel may take several generations of rocket men and women to complete one journey. I suspect there could also be a lot of infighting en route. the initial space travellers might well set out with wonderful ideals, but those might change for thge worse long before anybody gets there. Of course they could get even better. Even so it still bugs me that one of the Voyagers on its way out off our Solar System contains the words of wisdom of a former United Nations Secretary General who it turns out was a NAZI. Not to mention of course that one of the fathers of space travel Werner Von Braun quite happily used slaved labour,many of who died in assisting Von Braun's roket development ambitions.
Best wishes from the old codger Cliff
cowait
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Post by cowait »

Hi Cliff,

Of course there are those who would question whether ANY intellegent life exists on Earth. Now that is a little facetious I know but gven the way we seem intent on killing one another it might not be such a daft question.

And you ask just what is intellegence. We assume we are (generally that itand all other lesser creatures are not.
If we are correct in that assumption then where above a chimp's intellegence does 'real' intellegence begin? Given that any alien species that should happen to drop in on us would, currently, be more intellegent than us would they perhaps regard us as UN-intellegent? Pehaps we would be in danger of being domesticated ourselves. Pets even.
You are right just how would we communicate.? Who would be the driver and principal in such communication? Given that like you say, we can not really communicate with other species we have lived with always, why would we think we could do so with an alien species?
I suppose we look at other species as being below our level of intellegence (which is by and large true) and therefore they are 'not able' to understand us. We can't bridge that gap. An alien species might have just the same problem.
In fact when you think of it how many people can only speak one language . Are there not something like 160 different languages world wide?
Cliff
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Post by Cliff »

Dear Cowait
Having done a as they would call it these days "a taster" of Latin I very briefly did a second studied French at school but then dropped that when I only got 19 percent in the first exam! I did though go to France on holiday several times. I found my technique of shouting a people in English using a pseudo French accent seemed to work better than me trying to speak in French. So if anyone meets an alien since no body will understand alien language I suggest just shouting at them using a psuedo foreign accent would be as good a way as any of us humans communicating with 'em.
Best wishes from the grumpy old alien codger from Manchester, Cliff
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