Late Night Question: How Can You (Externally) Blow Up A Star?

We now know black holes can form from neutron star collisions, and we know that some super-massive stars are probably formed by the collision of smaller stars. So even a good sized star merging with another doesn't usually spell doom. However, all super-massive stars have a short life, the more massive, the shorter. Once iron builds up in its core, the star is doomed. Neutron stars, already tightly packed matter, are highly unstable when inter-acting with other high-mass objects (see the aforementioned merger).


Betelgeuse (the bright orange star in Orion), refusing to just blow up already.

So tonight's question:
If you somehow managed to slingshot a neutron star OR >1.4 solar-mass of pure solid iron right into a supermassive star that has already gone through it's Hydrogen->Helium->Carbon->Neon->Oxygen->Silicon phases, have you become death the destroyer of worlds? Or is your attempt at a real Death Star a dud?

Let's ignore the extreme unlikelihood of actually "capturing" and hurling such a neutron star or ball of iron. If you had the means, would it detonate the star?

If this wouldn't, what could you use?

Posted by: CAC at 11:02 PM



Comments

1 So how does this relate to tits?

Posted by: Checker Chubby at February 16, 2013 11:09 PM (lD8ju)

2 I know one thing that would definitely collapse any large star into black-hole nonexistance:

Obama's economic "plan."

Posted by: tomthebaker at February 16, 2013 11:10 PM (W7Y0R)

3 The only thing larger and with more mass is Obama's head.

Posted by: Dept. Of Accuracy Dept. at February 16, 2013 11:12 PM (MhA4j)

4 Throw in an active stargate?

Posted by: Ungus at February 16, 2013 11:13 PM (4TTBX)

5 Can we call it the Alan Parsons Project?

Posted by: lorien1973 at February 16, 2013 11:14 PM (mcWHD)

6 I was told there would be no math .

Posted by: Scoamf at February 16, 2013 11:17 PM (14Fln)

7 Carl Sagan books in Christmas stocking this year?

Posted by: scampydog at February 16, 2013 11:17 PM (2SXc9)

8 I use "Star-B-Gone", for all my star destroying needs.

Available at a Harbor Freight near you!

Posted by: Judge_Roy_Bean at February 16, 2013 11:19 PM (cCxiu)

9 I think a moon-sized slug of iron would detonate a star even if it had plenty of hydrogen left. It would sink to the center and block off fusion. I'm guessing that would cause the sun to cool slightly and shrink quickly, then heat up from the adiabatic compression and pulse like a supernova does. Then things would get worse until it finally 'sploded.

Not positive though. We should try it out before publishing an Ace of Spades paper on it.

Posted by: Kevin at February 16, 2013 11:19 PM (1Rjug)

10 Is this an open discussion or is it limited to drunk/stoned morons?

Posted by: John P. Squibob at February 16, 2013 11:19 PM (kqqGm)

11 Let's find out.

Saaaaaay 'ello to my lil fren.

*begins to unzip pants*

Posted by: Dick Cheney at February 16, 2013 11:20 PM (Ks9M3)

12 Warp a few million tons of solid iron into the core.

Posted by: weft cut-loop at February 16, 2013 11:20 PM (Ipj15)

13 Quick, someone dig up zombie Stanislaw Ulam.

Posted by: John P. Squibob at February 16, 2013 11:21 PM (kqqGm)

14 Would give sleazy preeezy helium, have him suck the oxygen out of the room, when speechifying about carbon credits, neonazi's, while Trumka is b*tching about workers exposed to Silicon and Putin is helping his buds access Hydrogen.

Posted by: Deli LLama at February 16, 2013 11:22 PM (lGu1O)

15 It doesn't make any difference. By the terms of this hypothetical, this suppermassive star was already about to go super nova.

So add the neutron star or don't. It doesn't matter. The star was going to go super nova anyway.

It might be a bigger supernova with the additional mass. But that's all,

Posted by: Abraham Simpson at February 16, 2013 11:26 PM (C+qQ0)

16 Somewhere in the basement of the Whitehouse is a large stockpile of weapons grade Stupidium. That should do the trick. Just a few grams has been used wrecking the country so far

Posted by: @PurpAv at February 16, 2013 11:28 PM (1rU+d)

17 Q: if you shot a black hole into a star going supernova, could the hole eat the bang faster than it propagates?


Posted by: @PurpAv at February 16, 2013 11:30 PM (1rU+d)

18 I slapped a star called Tau Epsilon 3 once, with my dick. Went supernova on me. (The star, not my dick). Thus, the Horsehead Nebula.

I do my best work at night.

It is very dark in space.

Posted by: Sharkman at February 16, 2013 11:31 PM (C3KwS)

19 Q: if you shot a black hole into a star going supernova, could the hole eat the bang faster than it propagates?
Posted by: @PurpAv


The answer lies in marrying two physics simulations already in existence.

Posted by: weft cut-loop at February 16, 2013 11:33 PM (Ipj15)

20 Since we are doing made up hypotheticals on how to make a super weapon out of a star, try this.

For a brief period of time, shut off the gravity field of a star. The heat and pressure will cause the gas to immediately radiate outwards, causing the star to quickly expand.

Then turn the gravity field back on. The gravity will then recollapse the star. As the pressure and heat shoot up dramatically, a very large percent of the gases will undergo fusion. You basically cause the entire star to explode all at once as a hydrogen bomb.


Posted by: Abraham Simpson at February 16, 2013 11:33 PM (C+qQ0)

21 Warning: Do not try this in your home solar system.

Posted by: eman at February 16, 2013 11:39 PM (NekHM)

22 Here's another equally fascinating question: How is it, that gas prices are now almost $4.75 a gallon for 87 octane here in CA and NOBODY HAS SAID ANYTHING!? For real, homey? (If G.W was.. oh nevermind)

Oh Obama, we praise you!

We Love you!

Crush Whitey!

- Love, the 50.5%

Posted by: Just the Facts at February 16, 2013 11:39 PM (m6Fkk)

23 Watch a show on Betelgeuse about hoe close it is to going supernova. They made it seem like it already happens we just have not seen it yet. They went though what it would look like here. It would be as bright as a second sun for a few months and then it would go out forever. If the axis was point direct to earth it could wipe out all life with the gamma ray burst even 640 light years away. They can see that it has a bulge on one side that they have to invent whole new solar systems to explain it. The bulge could have been a twin star that was in the processes of being absorbed. They said it was gas but it might have been what is left from a star.

If someone could get a neutron star in some kind of tractor beam to move it, they have a new technology that humans now could not even explain it on paper, they don't need a star to destroy another star.

Posted by: Trevor (@tjexcite) at February 16, 2013 11:42 PM (Ea64Y)

24 Put a rock inside a snow ball

Throw it at some bystanders head

Note the impact event

Accept your Nobel Prize

Posted by: Checker Chubby at February 16, 2013 11:43 PM (lD8ju)

25 Black holes = RACIST!

Posted by: Jmel at February 16, 2013 11:43 PM (9tSXa)

26

Sheridan the Starkiller.


Posted by: Bertram Cabot Jr. at February 16, 2013 11:43 PM (rLJaJ)

27 This calls for a congressional act.

Posted by: Craig Poe at February 16, 2013 11:44 PM (BVkEs)

28 Helen Thomas

Posted by: phoenixgirl at February 16, 2013 11:45 PM (l1H9H)

29 The energy we're talking about after a dinky fucking meteor rocked the earth makes any real perception of this highly problematic.

Posted by: Captain Hate at February 16, 2013 11:46 PM (wfK8G)

30 An African or European neutron star?

Posted by: CB at February 16, 2013 11:50 PM (6h0+l)

31 Orion is my BFF in the sky. I certainly don't like that he is going to lose one of his shoulders. This makes me very sad.

Posted by: Tuna at February 16, 2013 11:52 PM (M/TDA)

32 The size of the star doesn't really matter, does it? Throwing a neutron star at another star would cause the neutron star to accrete materials, which would have explodey side effects.

A chunk of iron that big would collapse by itself because it would be bigger than the Chandrasekhar limit, so you couldn't just do it all in one piece. Adding the iron in chunks should eventually cause the core to collapse.

Posted by: JonathanEllis at February 16, 2013 11:53 PM (BdzEV)

33 A supernova near the galactic core could set off a chain of supernovae and the whole galaxy goes boom.

Ask Larry Niven.

Posted by: eman at February 16, 2013 11:56 PM (NekHM)

34 Fuck if I know.

Posted by: Joe Biden at February 16, 2013 11:57 PM (HCwvj)

35 Time. You could use time. Fling yourself away from the star at >0.9c then return at a similar velocity. Locally, the star will have aged more rapidly than you the traveller, and have already exploded by the time you got back. Truly a time bomb.

Posted by: Jimmy don\'t play that at February 16, 2013 11:58 PM (WrXlZ)

36 Too bad jimi isn't here. He was a theoretical physicist.

Posted by: DAve at February 17, 2013 12:00 AM (XDC0v)

37 Iron Sunrise, anyone?

Posted by: MaxDamage at February 17, 2013 12:02 AM (UgtuZ)

38 I think if we knew the answer to this, we'd all be blown away.

Posted by: Some Engineer at February 17, 2013 12:04 AM (KqwSL)

39 Got an extra starship that has a warp drive ready to blow? I can do it... with a little help from a half-breed Vulcan and a drunk Scottish Chief Engineer...

BTW - know where I can score some Orion Slave Girl Poon Tang?

Posted by: James T. Kirk, Captain of the USS Enterprise at February 17, 2013 12:05 AM (Jls4P)

40 Step 1: Cut a hole in a box ...

Posted by: weft cut-loop at February 17, 2013 12:08 AM (Ipj15)

41 Teleport one cubic mile of planetary mass to the star's center. This is a weapon called the starhammer.

Posted by: Blanco Basura at February 17, 2013 12:19 AM (xKC/c)

42 OK, from several directions, generate gravitational waves meeting in the core in constructive interference. As the core begins to pulse, tune the g-wave frequency to resonate with the pulsing you've started. Watch from a distance, especially on the inward oscillation.

Posted by: Johnv2 at February 17, 2013 12:21 AM (1Eqcp)

43
well, duh. A big ball of anti-matter.

Posted by: Comrade Arthur at February 17, 2013 12:23 AM (mJkp9)

44 Too bad jimi isn't here. He was a theoretical physicist.
Posted by: DAve


He must be too busy finding a flaw in the solution to Fermat's Last Theorem.

Can't let a flaw exist!!!!!

Posted by: weft cut-loop at February 17, 2013 12:23 AM (Ipj15)

45 Unfortunately, I cannot begin to answer this question

Fortunately, that fact means that I can still attract women

Posted by: kbdabear at February 17, 2013 12:25 AM (mCvL4)

46 The answer is clear to all but the most feeble of minds - and I have it on good authority that no such feeble minds post here.

The answer is the additional mass would turn into a black hole. There would be no explosion/detonation. See also, The Chandrasekhar limit...

Posted by: Paul Morphy at February 17, 2013 12:25 AM (bQTso)

47

See the SF novel, "Iron Sunrise" by Charles Stross for the answer.


Posted by: naturalfake at February 17, 2013 12:27 AM (G9qZk)

48 Why aren't any trolls answering this equation? Being leftists they know everything and are super intelligent just by being leftists.

and it's not like they have a date tonight

Posted by: kbdabear at February 17, 2013 12:28 AM (mCvL4)

49 Curses! Foiled by MaxDamage at 37.

Posted by: naturalfake at February 17, 2013 12:28 AM (G9qZk)

50 Why are we flinging iron when we have nukes and RDX?

Posted by: Buzzsaw at February 17, 2013 12:29 AM (qo244)

51 The very fact that a known right wing blog is plotting to blow up a star makes them extremely dangerous. That's why we have to take everyone's guns

Posted by: Piers Morgan at February 17, 2013 12:30 AM (mCvL4)

52 I do it all the time!

Oh, blow UP a star .... never mind

Posted by: Shep Smith-Cooper at February 17, 2013 12:31 AM (mCvL4)

53 Did someone say "supermassive star"?

Posted by: Rosie O'Donnell at February 17, 2013 12:31 AM (07Etk)

54 well to me it's amazing that the center of the earth is millions of degrees and we haven't super nova'ed or something (hat tip - Al Gore)

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 12:33 AM (jDjlM)

55 I think I'll have another belt.

Posted by: Orion at February 17, 2013 12:35 AM (07Etk)

56 The very fact that a known right wing blog is plotting to blow up a star
makes them extremely dangerous. That's why we have to take everyone's
guns>>

tell you what Peirs as a compromise I'm good with outlawing steel bullets.

Posted by: Buzzsaw at February 17, 2013 12:35 AM (qo244)

57 I blame the Zionist Rothschild banksters

Posted by: Checker Chubby at February 17, 2013 12:38 AM (lD8ju)

58 re 56:
piers morgan logic:
a - nazis had guns
b - nazis were bad
c - therefore guns are bad; and
d - only people who work for the state should have guns

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 12:38 AM (jDjlM)

59 Dr. McKay blew up an entire solar system by rigging an Ancient super weapon to draw power from the star without a circuit breaker. That is record, I think.

Posted by: Invictus at February 17, 2013 12:39 AM (OQpzc)

60 I blame uranus

Posted by: phoenixgirl at February 17, 2013 12:40 AM (l1H9H)

61 I blame the Zionist Rothschild banksters
Posted by: Checker Chubby at February 17, 2013 12:38 AM (lD8ju)

Who doesn't?

Posted by: Invictus at February 17, 2013 12:40 AM (OQpzc)

62 Want fries with that?

Posted by: Mistaneah at February 17, 2013 12:44 AM (OSwjS)

63 So tonight's question:If you somehow managed to slingshot a neutron star OR >1.4 solar-mass of pure solid iron right into a supermassive star that has already gone through it's Hydrogen->Helium->Carbon->Neon->Oxygen->Silicon phases, have you become death the destroyer of worlds? Or is your attempt at a real Death Star a dud?

since there would be extraordinary temperatures involved when the star reached the iron phase, could we wait a while or do we need to strike while the iron is hot?

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 12:49 AM (jDjlM)

64 I look at the stars and sometimes wonder if one has already blown up a few hundred years ago

Posted by: kbdabear at February 17, 2013 12:49 AM (mCvL4)

65 reporter: also, would this project be in competant hands?
Joe Biden: Why, certainly, we're all incompetant!

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 12:51 AM (jDjlM)

66 I look at the stars and wonder if they are looking back.

Posted by: Invictus at February 17, 2013 12:51 AM (OQpzc)

67 re 64: many stars blew up years ago.cf, Rosie O'Donnell

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 12:52 AM (jDjlM)

68 Make it listen to an Obama speech while sitting next to Lobsterzilla.

Posted by: jeremiah Gosh Darn Amerikkka wright's Sock Puppet at February 17, 2013 12:54 AM (+OTLF)

69 an endless supply of rectangular blocks of neutronium, all measuring 1X4X9

Posted by: Tom Servo at February 17, 2013 12:54 AM (hTDbY)

70 so anyway, getting back to reality, wat kind of president do you think Joe Biden will make?

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 12:56 AM (jDjlM)

71 Since when is a "neutron start" made of Iron?

Posted by: Some Engineer at February 17, 2013 12:57 AM (KqwSL)

72 Is this a Star Wars thread? Because I don't want to get the crap kicked out of me again.

Posted by: Guido at February 17, 2013 12:57 AM (XLuH2)

73 by the way, isn't it time we named a nebula after Obama?

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 01:00 AM (jDjlM)

74 71 Since when is a "neutron start" made of Iron?

well, you gotta start somewhere.

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 01:01 AM (jDjlM)

75 I would like to take this time to champion the underappreciated corset. Better than stompy boots.

http://tinyurl.com/c5ouzgz

Posted by: Invictus at February 17, 2013 01:04 AM (OQpzc)

76 Neutron stars are no longer matter with a metal, covalent, or ionic chemistry. The electrons are already long since goners. It's a gravitationally compressed fluid of neutrons. And it's not even a bunch of iron nuclei anymore. Such a body is no longer composed of iron in any meaningful sense.

In the case of 1.4 solar masses of iron, that will probably not be a solid but a degenerate gas under compression (degenerate matter forms in sub solar masses such as brown dwarfs ). Again, it's not going to have enough chemistry to form a solid. The nuclei will heat up and though they can be fused the fusion will use rather than liberate energy making it a very self limiting process which is why it would act to retard further fusion in the core of a star. It takes in heat but doesn't produce any which means the pressure equilibrium of the star will eventually shift towards implosion (it will be imploding harder and faster than it is exploding).

bear in mind that white dwarfs don't produce heat but they still have a hell of a lot of it to radiate out so a white dwarf is still useful. In fact no white dwarfs have yet had time to cool into a black dwarf because the universe is not old enough. If you could move your world closer to it (it will be a lot smaller than the original star in most cases) it would still serve to heat that world in a tighter orbit. And if the new iron mass took you over the c limit then the star would become a neutron star or black hole (or merely a gravastar if you lean that 'no singularities in nature' way).

Posted by: Cackfinger at February 17, 2013 01:04 AM (CCHli)

77 I got it!

Store its total information on a Zip drive and wait for it to fail.

Posted by: weft cut-loop at February 17, 2013 01:05 AM (Ipj15)

78 Cackfinger, are you sure you didn't mean to post at Ace Of Space..?

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 01:06 AM (jDjlM)

79
Anti-matter would destroy a star. But then, the container or missile would have to be composed of anti-matter or it would itself be annhilated.

Has the Hadron Collider yet created any mini black holes? How cool would it be to possess some mini black holes or a smidgen of anti-matter. I want me some!

Posted by: black hole in one at February 17, 2013 01:09 AM (Q2wni)

80 So, Mr. Cackfinger, what do you think about quark stars? And don't mince words. Tell us what you really think.

Posted by: Some Engineer at February 17, 2013 01:12 AM (KqwSL)

81 Correct answer:

Place a white dwarf star in close orbit around it. Matter will be stolen from the star in question until the white dwarf undergoes a Type 1a Supernova, blowing itself to hell, and stripping most of the mass off the host star, flinging it all into a nebula surrounding the wreckage, and leaving a fading core to become a brown dwarf.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:13 AM (wYVte)

82 Somebody got into the good acid, eh?

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:13 AM (7xPCu)

83 re 79: Hannes Alfven, who I believe won the Nobel Prize in physics in 1970, argued that matter and anti-matter galaxies would not destroy each other but only react in a way that pushed them away from each other. Who knew...

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 01:13 AM (jDjlM)

84 Hawkwind dude!

Posted by: Clutch Cargo at February 17, 2013 01:15 AM (Qxdfp)

85 re 81: math, please

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 01:15 AM (jDjlM)

86 mallfly: the problem with bombarding matter with antimatter is that the contact explosion will blow the two types of matter appart.

A big explosion, yes. But you will still have a lot of mass left, all rapidly flying away from the point of contact.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:15 AM (wYVte)

87 Elect a low-flying, shit-eating, malignant narcissist to oversee said star.

Posted by: weft cut-loop at February 17, 2013 01:16 AM (Ipj15)

88 @81 I once dated a white dwarf. He was in close orbit around me and yes, he stole from me and there was also a lot of wreckage. But was I destroyed? No.

Posted by: Super Star at February 17, 2013 01:16 AM (Q2wni)

89 mallfly: look up a Type 1a supernova and get back to me.

Do your own google search.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:16 AM (wYVte)

90 48 @ Comrade Arthur at February 17, 2013 12:23 AM (mJkp9)

Yer getting there... but why stop with a single sun?

Since we're talking speculation and weird science, why not use a whole young 'anti-sun' (comprised of anti-hydrogen and anti-helium) and toss that sucker in.

I figure it would annihilate the better part of a whole galaxy.

(Just don't do it within the Milky Way...)

Posted by: CPT. Charles at February 17, 2013 01:17 AM (1GunI)

91 Wouldn't the angular momentum prevent a quick n' easy merger of the two bodies? But of course, if you have the ability to smoosh two stars together, it shouldn't be a problem to stop their rotation.

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:18 AM (7xPCu)

92 Extra helium. A reignition of sorts, might cause an explosion. The more of the lighter gas the better. Packaging might be problematic...but if we can do this, we could do that.

Posted by: and irresolute at February 17, 2013 01:19 AM (DBH1h)

93
As long as they don't destroy Uranus.

Posted by: George Takei at February 17, 2013 01:19 AM (Q2wni)

94 I figure it would annihilate the better part of a whole galaxy.

(Just don't do it within the Milky Way...)

Posted by: CPT. Charles at February 17, 2013 01:17 AM (1GunI)


What's the big deal? We're already on a collision course with Andromeda....it's comin' right for us!!

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:20 AM (7xPCu)

95 Kristophr, I've probably forgetten more about science than my little finger knew. We are trying to have some fun here.

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 01:21 AM (jDjlM)

96
How to blow up a star? Keep feeding his ego.

Posted by: Hollywood Producer at February 17, 2013 01:22 AM (Q2wni)

97 and irresolute: Which is how type 1a supernova's work.

The extra matter added is usually Hydrogen stolen from the nearby star and packed on top of material that is already fusing itself way down the Bethe cycle.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:23 AM (wYVte)

98 64 I look at the stars and sometimes wonder if one has already blown up a few hundred years ago
Posted by: kbdabear at February 17, 2013 12:49 AM (mCvL4)

Or thousands, or millions, or billions of years ago. Our most recent view of an explosion was of one from 26K light years plus the 1K years after the fact when we first saw it. Perspective is a beeatch.

Posted by: and irresolute at February 17, 2013 01:25 AM (DBH1h)

99 What's the big deal? We're already on a collision course with Andromeda....it's comin' right for us!!

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:20 AM

Is it because of Global Warming?

Posted by: CNN at February 17, 2013 01:25 AM (mCvL4)

100 Interesting. My little finger doesn't know much either.

Sorry, but tongue in cheek is kinda hard to detect in bare print.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:25 AM (wYVte)

101 99 What's the big deal? We're already on a collision course with Andromeda....it's comin' right for us!!

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:20 AM

Is it because of Global Warming?

Posted by: CNN at February 17, 2013 01:25 AM (mCvL4)

Galactic or Universal warming....from my SUV

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:26 AM (7xPCu)

102 I don't know about supernovae, but I'm currently arguing with someone at another site who believes that the Russians blew up the meteor with a missile before it hit the Earth.

Pray for me.

Posted by: rickl at February 17, 2013 01:26 AM (sdi6R)

103 Wouldn't blowing up a star cause the galaxy to tip over?

Posted by: Rep Hank Johnson at February 17, 2013 01:27 AM (mCvL4)

104 When galaxies crash head on, does it make a sound?

Posted by: @PurpAv at February 17, 2013 01:27 AM (1rU+d)

105 Is it because of Global Warming?

*****

Goddamn Daimler and his engine of doom!

Posted by: Dept. Of Accuracy Dept. at February 17, 2013 01:27 AM (MhA4j)

106 Feed it twinkies! Lot's and lot's of twinkies! That mother would get sooo fat! Boom!

Posted by: and irresolute at February 17, 2013 01:27 AM (DBH1h)

107 104 When galaxies crash head on, does it make a sound?
Posted by: @PurpAv at February 17, 2013 01:27 AM (1rU+d)

Just the airbags.

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:28 AM (7xPCu)

108 re 104: B00M to the 122nd power

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 01:29 AM (jDjlM)

109 Actually, if you want a good SMOD scenario, just plant a Gamma Ray Burst in this galaxy.

There is a good chance that a significant chunk of the Milky Way could be reset to single celled organisms by the radiation ... now if we just had a good handle on what causes Gamma Ray Bursts ...

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:29 AM (wYVte)

110 102 I don't know about supernovae, but I'm currently arguing with someone at another site who believes that the Russians blew up the meteor with a missile before it hit the Earth.

Pray for me.
Posted by: rickl at February 17, 2013 01:26 AM (sdi6R)

Why waste your time trying?

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:29 AM (7xPCu)

111 What's the big deal? We're already on a collision course with Andromeda....it's comin' right for us!!

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:20 AM

Makes you think about what's really important!

Posted by: Things Idiot Yuppies Say at February 17, 2013 01:30 AM (mCvL4)

112 I'm still on a sugar-high from the meteor explosion, and this kind of thread is NOT helping! Who woulda thunk that we would ever get to "see" this kind of thing in our lifetimes?! Astonishing!

Posted by: and irresolute at February 17, 2013 01:31 AM (DBH1h)

113 109
Actually, if you want a good SMOD scenario, just plant a Gamma Ray Burst in this galaxy.

There
is a good chance that a significant chunk of the Milky Way could be
reset to single celled organisms by the radiation .



Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:29 AM

Meaning we'd all become Joe Biden's brain?

Posted by: kbdabear at February 17, 2013 01:31 AM (mCvL4)

114 Posted by: rickl at February 17, 2013 01:26 AM (sdi6R)

I mean really, the Russians can't even build a fucking hot rod, and these douches think that they can take out a chunk of rock that is estimated to be 7,000 tons traveling at god knows how many miles per second?

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:31 AM (7xPCu)

115 Two words: Nuclear Squid.

Posted by: SqGuido at February 17, 2013 01:32 AM (XLuH2)

116 The asteroid 1950 DA has the greatest chance of hitting the Earth out of all the currently known NEOs.

It's about 1000 km across.

In about 860 years we are going to be in a load of trouble.

This will happen a bit before Andromeda plows into us.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:32 AM (wYVte)

117 re 116: so I probably shouldn't bother to quit smoking then.

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 01:33 AM (jDjlM)

118 ok... cats fed, teeth brushed. Out

Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 01:34 AM (jDjlM)

119 Depends on whether or not medical tech advances faster than you can die of old age.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:34 AM (wYVte)

120 Meaning we'd all become Joe Biden's brain?
Posted by: kbdabear at February 17, 2013 01:31 AM (mCvL4)
What -me worry!?

Posted by: and irresolute at February 17, 2013 01:35 AM (DBH1h)

121
104When galaxies crash head on, does it make a sound?


Posted by: @PurpAv at February 17, 2013 01:27 AM (1rU+d)

Sound waves only travel through air. Space is a vacuum. Like the inside of my head.

Posted by: Hollywood Producer at February 17, 2013 01:35 AM (Q2wni)

122 Hollywood Producer: But you can hear Star Trek phasers in space!

Funny that ... I guess if Andromeda doesn't shoot at us, we won't hear them hit?

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:37 AM (wYVte)

123 118 ok... cats fed, teeth brushed. Out
Posted by: mallfly at February 17, 2013 01:34 AM (jDjlM)
did you mean ... cats brushed, teeth fed? All bow down to Orville Redenbacker!

Posted by: and irresolute at February 17, 2013 01:37 AM (DBH1h)

124 Since when is a "neutron start" made of Iron?
Posted by: Some Engineer


Nice trolling. Do you have a second act?

Posted by: weft cut-loop at February 17, 2013 01:38 AM (Ipj15)

125 24
Put a rock inside a snow ball



Throw it at some bystanders head



Note the impact event



Accept your Nobel Prize

Posted by: Checker Chubby at February 16, 2013 11:43 PM

What happens if you put a whole peach in Meghan McCain's cooter? I mean I'm kind of worried because we did some wacky shit on that cross country drive.

You've read her work. What happens if she goes supernova?

Posted by: Michael Ian Black at February 17, 2013 01:38 AM (mCvL4)

126 You've read her work. What happens if she goes supernova?

Posted by: Michael Ian Black at February 17, 2013 01:38 AM (mCvL4)


That sounds....sticky.

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:39 AM (7xPCu)

127 You've read her work. What happens if she goes supernova?

You should ask her girl friend.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:39 AM (wYVte)

128 Screw the supernova. Let's talk some more about brown dwarfs and white dwarfs and that Andromeda chick.

Posted by: Auntie Matter, feeling kind of horny at February 17, 2013 01:43 AM (Q2wni)

129 It's about 1000 km across.

In about 860 years we are going to be in a load of trouble.

This will happen a bit before Andromeda plows into us.
Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:32 AM (wYVte)

In contrast, I recall that the one that put the kibosh on the dinosaurs' fun was around 10km across. The one that created Meteor Crater in Arizona was about the size of a locomotive.

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:43 AM (7xPCu)

130 So yeah, a hunk of rock 1000km across hitting the earth won't be a whole lot of fun.

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:45 AM (7xPCu)

131 Yup. 1950 DA is scary.

I'm not sure life on earth would survive at all if it hit. Maybe some really deep Archaeo-bacteria near the mantle.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:45 AM (wYVte)

132 When was the last time that ANYONE looked at the second page of Google results? I was tempted earlier today, but I decided that relevance was not as important as instant gratification. Sloth redefined for the digital age I suppose. ... my popcorn is getting cold ... can they smell the butter, are they full of envy, shall I return to the microwave just once more before the light of dawn burns my eyes ... (peace sign!)

Posted by: and irresolute at February 17, 2013 01:46 AM (DBH1h)

133 Plug in a Chevy Volt and a Nissan Leaf at the same time.

Posted by: Bufalobob at February 17, 2013 01:46 AM (x+7qA)

134 Alexa Doig IS pretty hot, Auntie Matter.

I don't think she did any porn though.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:46 AM (wYVte)

135 133 Plug in a Chevy Volt and a Nissan Leaf at the same time.
Posted by: Bufalobob at February 17, 2013 01:46 AM (x+7qA)

Double teh suck.

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:47 AM (7xPCu)

136 131 Yup. 1950 DA is scary.

I'm not sure life on earth would survive at all if it hit. Maybe some really deep Archaeo-bacteria near the mantle.
Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:45 AM (wYVte)


Think the earth's spin/orbit would change significantly?

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:49 AM (7xPCu)

137 If Andromeda hits on me it will be a big fuckin' deal!

Posted by: Joe Biden, astrofizzisist at February 17, 2013 01:50 AM (Q2wni)

138 That would be a bigger scare than a direct hit.

Altering the moon's orbit would be enough to really fuck things up.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:50 AM (wYVte)

139 What is the sound when two doves collide?

Posted by: The Artist once Formerly but now currently known as Prince at February 17, 2013 01:51 AM (673KB)

140 "Sput"

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 01:52 AM (wYVte)

141 The universe is a shooting gallery. Amazed we're still here. I read that if it wasn't for Jupiter's gravity attracting most of the asteroid hits, we'd be long gone.

Posted by: Don't hitch your wagon to an exploding star at February 17, 2013 01:53 AM (Q2wni)

142 139 What is the sound when two doves collide?
Posted by: The Artist once Formerly but now currently known as Prince at February 17, 2013 01:51 AM (673KB)

The same as a dove colliding with a Randy Johnson fast ball, but not as loud.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4QcEWV7ANM

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 01:54 AM (7xPCu)

143 @140 "nik"

Posted by: Spasibo at February 17, 2013 01:54 AM (Q2wni)

144 That was a nice splash when comet Shoemaker-Levy plowed into Jupiter.

Posted by: Alberta Oil Peon at February 17, 2013 01:56 AM (673KB)

145 144: Was at Goldendale Wa when it happened, at an impromptu star-party.

An eight year old kid happened to be watching with a damned big pair of binocs right at the moment of impact. He gasped, and I glanced at my watch, and got the current time. He said he saw a flash.

I compared my watch time to the naval observatory's correct time, and sent a report of a visual sighting in for him.

That kid was one of the few observers credited with a real-time visual on that event.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 02:01 AM (wYVte)

146 141 The universe is a shooting gallery. Amazed we're still here. I read that if it wasn't for Jupiter's gravity attracting most of the asteroid hits, we'd be long gone.
Posted by: Don't hitch your wagon to an exploding star at February 17, 2013 01:53 AM (Q2wni)


True. The Moon may play a role too, in absorbing and/or deflecting potential impactors in our own neighborhood.

Posted by: rickl at February 17, 2013 02:03 AM (sdi6R)

147 True. The Moon may play a role too, in absorbing and/or deflecting potential impactors in our own neighborhood.
Posted by: rickl


Fine. Think that.

Posted by: Saturn at February 17, 2013 02:05 AM (Ipj15)

148 Saturn is such a baleful astrological influence.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 02:05 AM (wYVte)

149 That's very cool indeed, Kristophr. You know, it has occurred to me that few of us anymore spend much time looking at the night sky. We spend much less of our time outdoors than our forefathers did. Fascinating things can be observed up there, and we are oblivious to it all.

Posted by: Alberta Oil Peon at February 17, 2013 02:06 AM (673KB)

150 Very cool, Kristophr.

Posted by: rickl at February 17, 2013 02:07 AM (sdi6R)

151 What is there no ONT thread.
I am paying $3.99. Per gallon for heating oil. I have more room than I need, but my father & mother bought this house in 1948 or 1949. I will not sell it until housing prices improve.

We are screwed until the The JEF is out of office!

Posted by: CarolT at February 17, 2013 02:08 AM (z4WKX)

152 Density

Ǿbamanite alloy > blackdemocratium > depleted uranium

Posted by: Lurkasaurus at February 17, 2013 02:08 AM (0K4Xj)

153 I'm sure there are folks doing star parties in Alberta this summer. Do a web search.

Buy a good pair of 10x50 binocs, and bring that, a blanket, and a lawn chair to one.

People will accidentally break your arm in the process of shoving you behind their gear, once you admit to being an astronomy newb.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 02:09 AM (wYVte)

154 People will accidentally break your arm in the
process of shoving you behind their gear, once you admit to being an
astronomy newb.


Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 02:09 AM (wYVte)

Friend of mine, his wife does star parties. I've met some of the regulars.

Posted by: Alberta Oil Peon at February 17, 2013 02:13 AM (673KB)

155 Night all.

Too damned cold to do any observing tonight, so it's bed.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 02:15 AM (wYVte)

156 Hawkwind dude!

Posted by: Clutch Cargo at February 17, 2013 01:15 AM (Qxdfp)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lNhmzyc_OrE

Posted by: Psychedelicat at February 17, 2013 02:16 AM (Vk2pI)

157 Night. Time for me to go to bed too. Work in the morning.

Posted by: Alberta Oil Peon at February 17, 2013 02:16 AM (673KB)

158 Sound waves only travel through air. Space is a vacuum. Like the inside of my head.

Posted by: Hollywood Producer at February 17, 2013 01:35 AM (Q2wni)


O Rly?

Posted by: George Lucas at February 17, 2013 02:17 AM (Vk2pI)

159 154 People will accidentally break your arm in the
process of shoving you behind their gear, once you admit to being an
astronomy newb.


Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 02:09 AM (wYVte)

Friend of mine, his wife does star parties. I've met some of the regulars.
Posted by: Alberta Oil Peon at February 17, 2013 02:13 AM (673KB)


I remember standing in line, listening to AC/DC on my Sony walkman, waiting to see Halley's comet in 1986. Took a look, saw a faint smudge of light, said 'meh' and went home.

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 02:17 AM (7xPCu)

160 141
The universe is a shooting gallery. Amazed we're still here. I read that
if it wasn't for Jupiter's gravity attracting most of the asteroid
hits, we'd be long gone.

Posted by: Don't hitch your wagon to an exploding star at February 17, 2013 01:53 AM

You should be thanking me!

Posted by: Barry Obullshit at February 17, 2013 02:20 AM (mCvL4)

161 1950 DA is 1000 meters across, not 1000 km. Easy mistake to make, but changes things a tad.

If an actual 600 mile wide object hit earth at 19 miles/second.... lol. At that point, it doesnt even matter. 600 miles wide, 6000 miles wide, we're turning inside out.

Posted by: ElKomandante at February 17, 2013 02:20 AM (qus7E)

162 I went to a Hailbop (?) Comet get together. Way cool. The guy that had the telescope had pics framed for us all. That was in CO. Then the bf at the time gave me a pic he took of it over Lake Michigan. Way cool. That Easter after brunch, we all went to another friends house and drank all the Halebop beer he brewed. I miss those times.

Posted by: Infidel at February 17, 2013 02:24 AM (vTi1t)

163 Blow up a star?

First, check for allergies and lactose intolerance.

Posted by: Merovign, Dark Lord of the Sith at February 17, 2013 02:25 AM (bxiXv)

164 You know how they say that in space you can't smell anything because it's sterile up there?

I sure hope so, because I tried on one of those spacesuits on a NASA visit after a lunch of beer and chili dogs.

It was like sitting in my own Dutch Oven

Posted by: Joe Biden at February 17, 2013 02:26 AM (mCvL4)

165 159
I remember standing in line, listening to AC/DC on my Sony walkman, waiting to see Halley's comet in 1986. Took a look, saw a faint smudge of light, said 'meh' and went home.

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 02:17 AM (7xPCu)


I followed that sucker around the sky for over six months with my little telescope and binoculars.

It's the most famous comet in history, and I figured that it was my only chance to see it, so I may as well make the best of it.

We drew the short straw in that the 1985/86 apparition was about the most unfavorable on record. It was spectacular in 1910, and I understand it will also be good in 2061. I'll be 103 then, so I don't know if I'll be interested in shivering in the dark.

Posted by: rickl at February 17, 2013 02:30 AM (sdi6R)

166 I'll be 103 then, so I don't know if I'll be interested in shivering in the dark.

Posted by: rickl at February 17, 2013 02:30 AM

You won't have to wait till you're 103 for that

Posted by: The EPA at February 17, 2013 02:31 AM (mCvL4)

167 Nice Morgan!

Posted by: Infidel at February 17, 2013 02:36 AM (vTi1t)

168 A little mood music:

"Starbreaker" by Judas Priest

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nr8pgN195Zw

Posted by: The Political Hat \m/ at February 17, 2013 02:55 AM (Vk2pI)

169 Blowing up a star is easy. Just change the gravitational constant of the universe.

Posted by: Q at February 17, 2013 03:41 AM (kSGAe)

170 Night all.

Here is "Black Hole Sun" by Soundgarden:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3mbBbFH9fAg

Posted by: The Political Hat at February 17, 2013 03:44 AM (Vk2pI)

171 Maybe some really deep Archaeo-bacteria near the mantle.

That's a pretty epic reset button.

Posted by: @PurpAv at February 17, 2013 04:28 AM (1rU+d)

172 It's the most famous comet in history, and I figured that it was my only chance to see it, so I may as well make the best of it.

We drew the short straw in that the 1985/86 apparition was about the most unfavorable on record. It was spectacular in 1910, and I understand it will also be good in 2061. I'll be 103 then, so I don't know if I'll be interested in shivering in the dark.
Posted by: rickl at February 17, 2013 02:30 AM (sdi6R)

Although I have had an interest in astronomy since I was very young, my sixteen year old self thought it was pretty lame to wait in line in the cold to see that unimpressive smudge of light. It was at the observatory of the local community college, and the telescope wasn't exactly Hubble's earthbound twin.

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 04:37 AM (7xPCu)

173 Take an old starship and set its warp engines to overload. Then fly it into the star just as it explodes.

BTW - Make sure the transporter is working first. You don't want to be aboard when she blows.

Posted by: Oswald at February 17, 2013 04:38 AM (o3wWh)

174 171 Maybe some really deep Archaeo-bacteria near the mantle.

That's a pretty epic reset button.
Posted by: @PurpAv at February 17, 2013 04:28 AM (1rU+d)

I'd still vote for the bacteria over Hillary.

Posted by: model_1066 at February 17, 2013 04:38 AM (7xPCu)

175 I went to a Hailbop (?) Comet get together.

AKA: Heaven's Gate

Posted by: Oswald at February 17, 2013 04:42 AM (o3wWh)

176 I'd taunt it about its ugly mother.

Posted by: Francis W. Porretto at February 17, 2013 05:18 AM (GCzY/)

177 Here is Dave Attell in Vegas with the Gold & Silver Pawn shop before they became famous as the "Pawn Stars."

Notice the difference in decor and attitude...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gvu6APT3JLY

Posted by: The Political Hat at February 17, 2013 06:24 AM (Vk2pI)

178 I think I read somewhere that Harrison Ford might get involved in this.


Posted by: David Duke at February 17, 2013 07:12 AM (m50qE)

179 Build a giant mylar mirror (essentially a solar sail) which can capture a portion of the star's output and reflect it back. Heat up one part of the star until it blows off gas. Keep doing that until you've boiled away the star.

Posted by: Trimegistus at February 17, 2013 07:36 AM (bjG2r)

180 All I can think about is how I am going to feed my family after the collapse. This star esploding is way out of my league.

Posted by: sTevo at February 17, 2013 07:45 AM (VMcEw)

181 >>>All I can think about is how I am going to feed my family after the collapse.

Likewise. Bought some freeze dried food for long term storage last week. I think a collapse will mean intermittent empty shelves, not always empty.

Like my insurance agent likes to say, TR buddy, you just can't insure for EVERYTHING.

I try. Now where's the coffee?

Posted by: Tobacco Road at February 17, 2013 07:55 AM (4Mv1T)

182 Sandra Fluke

Posted by: Bets at February 17, 2013 08:03 AM (bz61f)

183 I hate it when I open the Sunday comics and Blondie is not even in her own strip that morning. Just sayin'

Posted by: Tobacco Road at February 17, 2013 08:08 AM (4Mv1T)

184 Iron has the least binding energy per nucleon (BEPN)


I like to mention that every time I am discussing nuclear explosions

Posted by: Tmitsss at February 17, 2013 08:10 AM (HOipJ)

185 I once shot a star,
Just to watch it die.

Posted by: Village Idiot's Apprentice at February 17, 2013 08:11 AM (bTPOR)

186 Is it just me, or does it smell like stale beer and cigarette butts in here from last night?

Maybe it's just me.

Posted by: Tobacco Road at February 17, 2013 08:12 AM (4Mv1T)

187 Kickstarter?

Posted by: Jean at February 17, 2013 08:23 AM (S4AQU)

188 I woke up on the couch and it seems I'm watching '101 Dalmatians'.

This is my nightmare!

Posted by: Jones in CO at February 17, 2013 08:24 AM (8sCoq)

189 how to blow up a star?
does it involve a Death Star?
maybe global warming?

Posted by: chemjeff at February 17, 2013 08:28 AM (BBWjt)

190 I see that Rubio is saying that Prezzy Skeet's Immigration policy will be DOA.

Skeet sounds like our new Community Association President.
Always full of "We are going to..."
Never once asks for input.
Often gets slapped down due to his ideas not being in conformity to By-laws.

A democrat also.
Coincidence?
I think not.

Posted by: Village Idiot's Apprentice at February 17, 2013 08:28 AM (bTPOR)

191
Without wadign through over 180 comments, I'll give you the answer: Drop a planet moving at super-relativistic speed into the star using a hyperspatial tube.

Folks, this has been sooo done. See "The Children of the Lens" (E.E. "Doc" Smith, 1954 (Fantasy Press)).

Posted by: Harry at February 17, 2013 08:30 AM (eaere)

192 In the collision between galaxies few if any stars will bonk into each other.

Posted by: eman at February 17, 2013 08:30 AM (NekHM)

193 New on up

Posted by: Village Idiot's Apprentice at February 17, 2013 08:34 AM (bTPOR)

194 @57 me too

Posted by: Chuck Hagel at February 17, 2013 08:57 AM (sH2TP)

195 I'd use my blackholenator, of course. Right after taking over the entire tri-state area. Now, where is that Barry the Platapuss? Heinz

Posted by: Doufenschemfertz Evil Inc. at February 17, 2013 10:20 AM (F0sUa)

196 M80s,man.
I got a whole box of 'em down in South Carolina.

Posted by: LeBron Steinman at February 17, 2013 10:20 AM (jfWE9)

197 The "Gray Lensman" series by E.E "Doc" Smith is a primer on this kind of stuff.

Posted by: TANSTAAFL at February 17, 2013 10:37 AM (52QEX)

198 I'd use Democrats.

Set the controls for the heart of the sun...

Posted by: Stu-22 at February 17, 2013 10:39 AM (k4bdL)

199 Well if I remember this stuff, A neutron star is pretty damn heavy. Its like crushing the entire earth with all its mass into a sphere the size of a baseball. A teaspoon of its matter weighs something like millions of tons. If you had the ability to even capture a neutron star and move it, you're probably omnipotent enough to use betelgeuse as a cigarette lighter, and can just snuff the fucker between your fingers.

Has anybody suggested just calling Q? He's into this sort of thing.

Posted by: Berserker at February 17, 2013 10:40 AM (FMbng)

200 ha ha this FULLY OPERATIONAL death star.

Posted by: DÔrth du jour at February 17, 2013 11:00 AM (lPbS1)

201 Well, once you realize that the crux of the biscuit is the apostrophe, then the answer becomes obvious.


42



Posted by: tomthebaker at February 17, 2013 11:02 AM (W7Y0R)

202 My work is done here.

Posted by: tomthebaker at February 17, 2013 11:03 AM (W7Y0R)

203 You're talking about a Thorne-Zytkow ( http://bit.ly/dgFwwF ) object and there are astrophysicists who claim to have found the results ( http://bit.ly/15mYLxu ) of such mergers.

Posted by: researchesspaceandshit at February 17, 2013 11:05 AM (PeB4U)

204 161: I really hate making severe magnitude errors like that. Just getting all excited and fapping to the body count, I guess.

Yea, that puts 1590 DA at about a fourth the size of the Chicxalub impactor.

Not a planet scrubber, but still damned messy if it hits.

Posted by: Kristophr at February 17, 2013 12:21 PM (wYVte)

205 if you give a star access to enough coke and meth, they'll usually self-destruct

Posted by: Bill from Chappaqua at February 17, 2013 01:22 PM (0SXI6)

206 I'm so disappointed. I thought this post was going to be about Charlie Sheen.

Posted by: majorityofone at February 18, 2013 02:56 AM (QyY8P)






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