Have you ever wondered what would happen to you if you fell into a black hole, but could somehow avoid being ripped apart? Charles Liu from New York's College of Staten Island sat down with "Life's Little Mysteries" and answered that question. In short, The larger the blackhole, the less extreme its surface is. If you were sucked into the event horizon of a black hole about the size of our galaxy, it would hypothetically be possible to maintain your structural integrity. Einsteins special theory of relativity says that the faster objects move through space, the slower they move through time. Therefore, You and every object that was swallowed by the black hole would feel the effects of dilatation of the curvature of space/time. The objects that hurdled into the black hole before you did would experience a larger time dilation than you would and all of the objects that entered it after you would experience less dilation. Thus, if you're able to look forward toward the black hole as you're falling into it at the speed of light, you would see every object that has fallen into it in the past. If you look backwards, you'd be able to see everything that will ever fall into the black hole behind you. You'd be able to see the entire history of that particular spot in the cosmos from the inception of the universe until the end of time. Hypothetically, of course. • Charles answers this question and more! • http://www.lifeslittlemysteries.com/1545-top-3-questions-people-ask-astrophysicist-answers.html -JT
Meet PSR B1257+12 b from the Virgo constellation, the first extra-solar planet found outside of our solar system and one of only a small handful of known objects that have been discovered orbiting a pulsar! Granted, this planet isn't a slice of paradise or anything like the place we call home. In fact, it's downright hellacious. You see, a pulsar is a magnetized, fast rotating neutron star that beams deadly electromagnetic radiation into space like no bodies business. The events leading to the formation of a pulsar begin when the core of a massive star is compressed during a supernova, which collapses into a neutron star or a black hole. If the former happens, What's left at the end of the supernova is the dense core from the dead star that's only about 10 miles in diameter called a neutro...n star. When the neutron star continues to spit out light and radiation after it explodes, it's classified as a pulsar. The only way we can observe the radiation is if the beam of emission is pointing towards the Earth, much the way a lighthouse can only be seen when the light is pointed in the direction of an observer. • PSR B1257+12 was discovered in 1992 by AleksanderWolszczan, a astronomer from Poland. The planet is over 4 times as massive as Earth and it orbits around its mother pulsar (PSR B1257+12) approximately every 66 Earth days. The only light the planet receives comes from the pulsar. So, if you could stand on the planet, the sky would look like blue light reflecting off from a disco ball. Oh, did I mention that the planet receives so much radiation, part of it actually glows? • - JT
Quantum levitation anyone? • A thin superconductor layer (~1µm thick) is coated on a sapphire wafer. Quantum physics tells us that the magnetic field penetrates into the superconductor in the form of discrete flux tubes. The superconductor strongly pins these tubes, causing it to float in midair. This effect is called ‘quantum levitation’. • http://www.quantumlevitation.com/QuantumLevitation/See_it_in_Action.html
Meet "super-earth" Gliese 581 c. Gliese 581 c is 20.3 light years away and it orbits a dying star named "Gliese 581" in the Libra constellation. Don't let the "super-earth" title fool you. This planet is probably much different from our own. First of all, it's believed that the sky of the planet is a crimson red color based on known atmospheric conditions and the fact that its mother star is a red dwarf. The planet is tidally locked to Gliese 581, which means one side is perpetually light and one side is perpetually dark and the two always show the same face to one another. On average, it seems that the light Gliese 581 c receives from its star has about 30% of the intensity of sunlight on Earth. This may indicate that the planet would be too cold for life. However, in reality the atmospheric greenhouse effect can significantly raise planetary temperatures. If Gliese 581 c has a large greenhouse effect, then the surface temperature might well permit water AND life. However, If life were to somehow develop and evolve on this planet, there would only be a narrow strip of land where the temperature would be compatible with life. Seeing as how one side of the planet is hot and the other is cold, you could generally also expect some strange weather patterns, with gale winds surging from the hot to the cold side every day, along with permanent torrential rain, because there are no seasons. • In 2008, scientists from Ukraine sent a high-powered digital radio signal towards the planet that contained 501 messages that were chosen through a competition on Bebo, the social networking website. The message is expected to reach their solar system in early 2029.
Within the next 4 to 7 billion years, the sun will begin to make the transition from a star into a red giant. As it does, gravity will force the sun to collapse into its core, which will ratchet up the heat on the remaining hydrogen and cause the sun to expand into a red giant- incinerating the innermost rocky planets in our solar system. Don't worry though. You and I won't be around to see it. Gradually, the sun's brightness is increasing by almost 10% every billion years, which in turn, will inevitably cause all of the water on our little planet to dry up, thus eliminating life as we know it. • It's not all bad news though! Scientists think they've found some good contenders to host life in our own back yard. Two places of interest are Europa (one of Jupiter's moons) and Enceladus (one of Saturn's moons), which are located respectively 480 and 900 million miles away from the sun. Both are believed to contain sub-surface bodies of liquid water, which is imperative to the survival of carbon based lifeforms (i.e. YOU). So, what's the problem then? Well, both moons are EXTREMELY cold and very far from the Goldilocks region of our solar system. However, while our rapidly expanding sun is using the remainder of its fuel, these small moons will thaw out, bringing a brief springtime after a 10-billion-year winter.