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Is Life on Earth Originated in Mars or Vice-Versa ???

Posted by Sunny

In 1996 the controversial discovery of what appeared to be Martian fossils in a meteorite from Antarctica ignited a furor in the scientific community.

The idea that a rock billions of years old was flung into space with traces of life aboard was intoxicating, fueling thoughts of panspermia -- the idea that all life on Earth could have originated on Mars or some other alien planet.


Twelve years on, scientists still debate whether the tiny structures are Martian or not, or even fossils. But now a new study has shown it's possible for traces of life to survive a punishing interplanetary journey.

Frances Westall of the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) in France and a group of researchers attached a 2-centimeter-thick rock to the heat shield of a Foton M3 space capsule.

Nestled between the shield and rock was a layer of the hearty bacteria Chroococcidiopsis, commonly found in the harshest deserts on Earth.

When the capsule hit Earth's atmosphere, the rock was heated to at least 3,056 degrees Fahrenheit (1,680 degrees Centigrade). Most of it burned away, leaving only 8 millimeters of material behind. What was left was a gooey, melted white crust of quartz.

The rock's original structure -- along with visible microfossils -- was preserved at the core.


"This is a great positive result in searching for traces of extra-terrestrial life on meteorites," Westall said. "If ever Martians fossils land on Earth, we should be able to see them."

The desert-dwelling organisms were not so lucky, however.

Westall said the screws that held the rock to the heat shield loosened during re-entry, allowing temperatures between the shield and the rock to climb to between 570 and 930 degrees Fahrenheit (300 and 500 degrees Centigrade).

"[The bacteria] were carbonized," she said, "so it's a negative result for the idea of panspermia, but we'll have to run the experiment again."

"This certainly does not disprove the idea of panspermia," David Kring of the Lunar and Planetary Science Institute said.


For life on Mars to make it to Earth, it would have to survive a perilous interplanetary crossing. Scientists have calculated that the first stage -- launching off the surface with debris created by a meteorite impact -- is survivable.

Little is known about the long journey through the vacuum of space, but microbes living inside rock could be protected enough to make the trip.

Then comes re-entry. If life were to survive the heat of rocketing through Earth's atmosphere at 12-15 kilometers per second (33,000 mph), it would still have to live through the impact. At this point, no one knows if it can.

"This is a piece in the puzzle of the origin of life, and the distribution of life in the solar system," Kring said of the team's research. "If life did originate on Earth and was transferred elsewhere in the solar system, it would be interesting to everyone to know that, and vice versa -- if life began on Mars and simply propagated better on Earth, that would be interesting, too."

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laser powered spacecraft

Posted by RAJESH

The future technolgy:laser propulsions
Imagine a small saucer like structure reaching speeds of rockets,its not a ufo...its our future rocket.. In few days we may be able to lauch spacecrafts with saucer like structure with reflecting surfaces... Laser beams are user to provide the initial thrust to it....
The Lightcraft propulsion research employs the Pulsed Laser Vulnerability Test System (PLVTS), a 10 kilowatt laser built by AVCO TEXTRON for the Army. PLVTS is the highest average power, pulsed carbon dioxide laser presently operating in the United States.

The laser-propelled vehicle, called "Lightcraft" because it flies on a beam of laser light, is designed to harness the energy of a laser beam and convert it into propulsive thrust. The Lightcraft receives the kilojoule pulses from the PLVTS laser at a rate of 10 times per second upon the concentrating mirror that forms its rear section. The function of this parabolic mirror is to focus the pulsed laser energy into a ring-shaped "absorption/propulsion" chamber. Here the laser beam is concentrated to extremely high intensities, sufficient to momentarily burst the inlet air into a highly luminous plasma (10-30,000 K), with instantaneous pressures reaching tens of atmospheres providing thrust. This airbreathing pulsed detonation engine concept owes its origins to the German V1 "Buzz Bomb" of WW II that ran on aviation fuel.
see this video to get a good idea of the laser craft...

The laser Lightcraft concept was first proposed and developed by Prof. Leik Myrabo of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, under sponsorship of the Laser Propulsion Program of the former Strategic Defense Initiative Office (SDIO). He is now collaborating with the Air Force Research Laboratory's Propulsion Directorate at Edwards AFB CA to conduct field tests to demonstrate how the craft can be propelled using available high powered lasers. Dr Franklin Mead of the lab's advanced propulsion group studied the initial SDIO proposal, and offered Myrabo a multi-year sabbatical position at the lab and assistance in developing and validating the concept.

Myrabo's original SDIO Lightcraft concept was designed as a single-stage-to-orbit spacecraft that would become a microsatellite upon reaching orbit. The spacecraft lifts-off in a laser propelled airbreathing engine mode, and as it nears Mach 5 speed and 30 km altitude, shifts into a laser propelled rocket mode. The airbreathing engine mode would develop quasi-steady thrust by pulsing at hundreds to thousands of times a second -- depending on the mach number and altitude flown along the boost trajectory into orbit. The rocket mode would use on-board propellant, in the form of liquid hydrogen or nitrogen, to convert and expand the laser energy for propulsion once the Lightcraft had climbed above the atmosphere. Unlike Goddard’s rocket engine, no oxydizer is required. The SDIO study showed that all launch to orbital conditions for a laser propelled vehicle could be satisified by a single, high-power ground-based laser -- with, or without the aid of a low altitude laser relay mirror.

Myrabo and Mead are the project team co-directors for this laser Lightcraft research and development effort. Five different Lightcraft designs have been flight tested using the pointing and tracking system on the PLVTS laser, run by Stephen Squires and Chris Beairsto of WSMR's Directorate of Applied Technology Test and Simulation.

Laser boost capability has been demonstrated at the White Sands facility with Lightcraft reaching 14 feet vertically in 2-second gyroscopically stabilized free flights, as well as 400 foot horizontal guide-wire flights lasting 10 to 20 seconds.

The researchers plan to increase the Lightcraft's free flight altitude in November by moving the launch stand outside Test Cell #3, where the flights will no longer be limited by lab ceiling height. The near-term goal is to reach an altitude of 1 Kilometer in the next 18 months with the PLVTS laser. To climb even higher, e.g., 10 to 100 km or near the edge of space, will require re-activation of the 150-Kw pulsed "Driver" CO2 laser, now stored in Test Cell #2 at HELSTF. Preparations are underway to enlist this powerful infrared laser that was developed at the AVCO Research Laboratory (Everett, MA) in the mid '70's -- under the guidance of Dr. Arthur Kantrowitz, a long time advocate of laser propulsion.

The predominant reason for investigating this laser launch concept is its low cost, simplicity and responsiveness upon demand. Laser Lightcraft and their propulsion modes are a radical departure from the chemically fueled rockets used today. If successful, this new energy beam propulsion technology will supplement rather than replace current manned and unmanned launch systems.

The approach holds great promise for reducing the launch costs of microsatellites by several orders of magnitude less than today's chemical-fueled rocket technology. The evolution of ultra-lightweight high temperature materials, dual-mode laser propulsion engines, powerful lasers, and the opportunity to change science fiction into scientific fact are the driving forces behind this joint AFRL/ MSFC research effort, pursueing an innovative and promising method for reaching space.

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Large hadron collider HALTED

Posted by RAJESH

The particle collider that was launched with fanfare on September 10 has been damaged to a degree than previously thought and will be out of commission for at least two months,its operators said on saturday..... A Cern spokesman said damage to the £3.6bn ($6.6bn) particle accelerator was worse than anticipated.

The LHC is built to smash protons together at huge speeds, recreating conditions moments after the Big Bang.

Scientists hope it will shed light on fundamental questions in physics.


DAMAGE
:
it seems to be a faulty electrical connection between two magnets that stopped super conducting, melted and led to a mechanical failure and let the helium out...

in detail.....
On Friday, a failure, known as a quench, caused around 100 of the LHC's super-cooled magnets to heat up by as much as 100C.

The fire brigade were called out after a tonne of liquid helium leaked into the tunnel at Cern, near Geneva.

Cern spokesman James Gillies said on Saturday that the sector that was damaged would have to be warmed up to above its operating temperature - of near absolute zero - so that repairs could be made, and then cooled down again.

While he said there was never any danger to the public, Mr Gillies admitted that the breakdown would be costly.

He said: "A full investigation is still under way but the most likely cause seems to be a faulty electrical connection between two of the magnets which probably melted, leading to a mechanical failure.

"We're investigating and we can't really say more than that now.

"But we do know that we will have to warm the machine up, make the repair, cool it down, and that's what brings you to two months of downtime for the LHC."

SETBACK:

The first beams were fired successfully around the accelerator's 27km (16.7 miles) underground ring over a week ago.

The crucial next step is to collide those beams head on. However, the fault appears to have ruled out any chance of these experiments taking place for the next two months at least.

The quench occurred during final testing of the last of the LHC's electrical circuits to be commissioned.

At 1127 (0927 GMT) on Friday, the LHC's online logbook recorded a quench in sector 3-4 of the accelerator, which lies between the Alice and CMS detectors.

The entry stated that helium had been lost to the tunnel and that vacuum conditions had also been lost.

The superconducting magnets in the LHC must be supercooled to 1.9 kelvin above absolute zero, to allow them to steer particle beams around the circuit.

As a result of the quench, the temperature of about 100 of the magnets in the machine's final sector rose by around 100C.

The setback came just a day after the LHC's beam was restored after engineers replaced a faulty transformer that had hindered progress for much of the past week.

The collider, in design and consruction stages for more than 2 decades, is the world's largest atom smasher...

it fires beams of protons from nuclei of atoms around the tunnels at nearly the speed of light...

for more....

source


BBC news

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Ten Ways to destroy Mother Earth

Posted by Sunny


Whether it took the Earth 4.5 billion years to get to where it is today (or a mere seven days), destroying it might take a lot less time. Take a look at these spell-bounding new ways of destroying our Earth and how far man can reach from today's perspective.

10. Total existence failure

You will need: nothing

Method: No method. Simply sit back and twiddle your thumbs as, completely by chance, all 200,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 atoms making up the planet Earth suddenly, simultaneously and spontaneously cease to exist. Note: the odds against this actually ever occurring are considerably greater than a googolplex to one. Failing this, some kind of arcane (read: scientifically laughable) probability-manipulation device may be employed.

Utter, utter rubbish.


9. Gobbled up by strangelets

You will need: a stable strangelet

Method: Hijack control of the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider in Brookhaven National Laboratory, Long Island, New York. Use the RHIC to create and maintain a stable strangelet. Keep it stable for as long as it takes to absorb the entire Earth into a mass of strange quarks. Keeping the strangelet stable is incredibly difficult once it has absorbed the stabilizing machinery, but creative solutions may be possible.

A while back, there was some media hoo-hah about the possibility of this actually happening at the RHIC, but in actuality the chances of a stable strangelet forming are pretty much zero.

Earth's final resting place: a huge glob of strange matter.


8. Sucked into a microscopic black hole

You will need: a microscopic black hole. Note that black holes are not eternal, they evaporate due to Hawking radiation. For your average black hole this takes an unimaginable amount of time, but for really small ones it could happen almost instantaneously, as evaporation time is dependent on mass. Therefore you microscopic black hole must have greater than a certain threshold mass, roughly equal to the mass of Mount Everest. Creating a microscopic black hole is tricky, since one needs a reasonable amount of neutronium, but may possibly be achievable by jamming large numbers of atomic nuclei together until they stick. This is left as an exercise to the reader.

Method: simply place your black hole on the surface of the Earth and wait. Black holes are of such high density that they pass through ordinary matter like a stone through the air. The black hole will plummet through the ground, eating its way to the center of the Earth and all the way through to the other side: then, it'll oscillate back, over and over like a matter-absorbing pendulum. Eventually it will come to rest at the core, having absorbed enough matter to slow it down. Then you just need to wait, while it sits and consumes matter until the whole Earth is gone.

Highly, highly unlikely. But not impossible.

Earth's final resting place: a singularity of almost zero size, which will then proceed to happily orbit the Sun as normal.

Source: "The Dark Side Of The Sun," by Terry Pratchett. It is true that the microscopic black hole idea is an age-old science fiction mainstay which predates Pratchett by a long time.


7. Blown up by matter/antimatter reaction

You will need: 2,500,000,000,000 tons of antimatter

Antimatter - the most explosive substance possible - can be manufactured in small quantities using any large particle accelerator, but this will take some considerable time to produce the required amounts. If you can create the appropriate machinery, it may be possible - and much easier - simply to "flip" 2.5 trillion tons of matter through a fourth dimension, turning it all to antimatter at once.

Method: This method involves detonating a bomb so big that it blasts the Earth to pieces.

How hard is that?

The gravitational binding energy of a planet of mass M and radius R is - if you do the lengthy calculations - given by the formula E=(3/5)GM^2/R. For Earth, that works out to roughly 224,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 Joules. The Sun takes nearly a WEEK to output that much energy. Think about THAT.

To liberate that much energy requires the complete annihilation of around 2,500,000,000,000 tonnes of antimatter. That's assuming zero energy loss to heat and radiation, which is unlikely to be the case in reality: You'll probably need to up the dose by at least a factor of ten. Once you've generated your antimatter, probably in space, just launch it en masse towards Earth. The resulting release of energy (obeying Einstein's famous mass-energy equation, E=mc^2) should be sufficient to split the Earth into a thousand pieces.

Earth's final resting place: A second asteroid belt around the Sun.

Earliest feasible completion date: AD 2500. Of course, if it does prove possible to manufacture antimatter in the sufficiently large quantities you require - which is not necessarily the case - then smaller antimatter bombs will be around long before then.


6. Destroyed by vacuum energy detonation

You will need: a light bulb

Method: This is a fun one. Contemporary scientific theories tell us that what we may see as vacuum is only vacuum on average, and actually thriving with vast amounts of particles and antiparticles constantly appearing and then annihilating each other. It also suggests that the volume of space enclosed by a light bulb contains enough vacuum energy to boil every ocean in the world. Therefore, vacuum energy could prove to be the most abundant energy source of any kind. Which is where you come in. All you need to do is figure out how to extract this energy and harness it in some kind of power plant - this can easily be done without arousing too much suspicion - then surreptitiously allow the reaction to run out of control. The resulting release of energy would easily be enough to annihilate all of planet Earth and probably the Sun too.

Slightly possible.

Earth's final resting place: a rapidly expanding cloud of particles of varying size.

Earliest feasible completion date: 2060 or so.

Source: "3001: The Final Odyssey," by Arthur C. Clarke


5. Sucked into a giant black hole

You will need: a black hole, extremely powerful rocket engines, and, optionally, a large rocky planetary body. The nearest black hole to our planet is 1600 light years from Earth in the direction of Sagittarius, orbiting V4641.
Method: after locating your black hole, you need get it and the Earth together. This is likely to be the most time-consuming part of this plan. There are two methods, moving Earth or moving the black hole, though for best results you'd most likely move both at once.

Very difficult, but definitely possible.

Earth's final resting place: part of the mass of the black hole.

Earliest feasible completion date: I do not expect the necessary technology to be available until AD 3000, and add at least 800 years for travel time. (That's in an external observer's frame of reference and assuming you move both the Earth and the black hole at the same time.)

Sources: "The Hitch Hiker's Guide To The Galaxy," by Douglas Adams; SPACE.com


4. Meticulously and systematically deconstructed

You will need: a powerful mass driver, or ideally lots of them; ready access to roughly 2*10^32J

Method: Basically, what we're going to do here is dig up the Earth, a big chunk at a time, and boost the whole lot of it into orbit. Yes. All six sextillion tons of it. A mass driver is a sort of oversized electromagnetic railgun, which was once proposed as a way of getting mined materials back from the Moon to Earth - basically, you just load it into the driver and fire it upwards in roughly the right direction. We'd use a particularly powerful model - big enough to hit escape velocity of 11 kilometers per second even after atmospheric considerations - and launch it all into the Sun or randomly into space.

Alternate methods for boosting the material into space include loading the extracted material into space shuttles or taking it up via space elevator. All these methods, however, require a - let me emphasize this - titanic quantity of energy to carry out. Building a Dyson sphere ain't gonna cut it here. (Note: Actually, it would. But if you have the technology to build a Dyson sphere, why are you reading this?) See No. 6 for a possible solution.

If we wanted to and were willing to devote resources to it, we could start this process RIGHT NOW. Indeed, what with all the gunk left in orbit, on the Moon and heading out into space, we already have done.

Earth's final resting place: Many tiny pieces, some dropped into the Sun, the remainder scattered across the rest of the Solar System.

Earliest feasible completion date: Ah. Yes. At a billion tons of mass driven out of the Earth's gravity well per second: 189,000,000 years.


3. Pulverized by impact with blunt instrument

You will need: a big heavy rock, something with a bit of a swing to it... perhaps Mars

Method: Essentially, anything can be destroyed if you hit it hard enough. ANYTHING. The concept is simple: find a really, really big asteroid or planet, accelerate it up to some dazzling speed, and smash it into Earth, preferably head-on but whatever you can manage. The result: an absolutely spectacular collision, resulting hopefully in Earth (and, most likely, our "cue ball" too) being pulverized out of existence - smashed into any number of large pieces which if the collision is hard enough should have enough energy to overcome their mutual gravity and drift away forever, never to coagulate back into a planet again.

A brief analysis of the size of the object required can be found here. Falling at the minimal impact velocity of 11 kilometers per second and assuming zero energy loss to heat and other energy forms, the cue ball would have to have roughly 60% of the mass of the Earth. Mars, the next planet out, "weighs" in at about 11% of Earth's mass, while Venus, the next planet in and also the nearest to Earth, has about 81%. Assuming that we would fire our cue ball into Earth at much greater than 11km/s (I'm thinking more like 50km/s), either of these would make great possibilities.

Obviously a smaller rock would do the job, you just need to fire it faster. A 10,000,000,000,000-tonne asteroid at 90% of light speed would do just as well. See the Guide to moving Earth for useful information on maneuvering big hunks of rock across interplanetary distances.

Pretty plausible.

Earth's final resting place: a variety of roughly Moon-sized chunks of rock, scattered haphazardly across the greater Solar System.

Earliest feasible completion date: AD 2500, maybe?


2. Eaten by von Neumann machines
You will need: a single von Neumann machine

Method: A von Neumann machine is any device that is capable of creating an exact copy of itself given nothing but the necessary raw materials. Create one of these that subsists almost entirely on iron, magnesium, aluminum and silicon, the major elements found in Earth's mantle and core. It doesn't matter how big it is as long as it can reproduce itself exactly in any period of time. Release it into the ground under the Earth's crust and allow it to fend for itself. Watch and wait as it creates a second von Neumann machine, then they create two more, then they create four more. As the population of machines doubles repeatedly, the planet Earth will, terrifyingly soon, be entirely eaten up and turned into a swarm of potentially sextillions of machines. Technically your objective would now be complete - no more Earth - but if you want to be thorough then you can command your VNMs to hurl themselves, along with any remaining trace elements, into the Sun. This hurling would have to be achieved using rocket propulsion of some sort, so be sure to include this in your design.

So crazy it might just work.

Earth's final resting place: the bodies of the VNMs themselves, then a small lump of iron sinking into the Sun.

Earliest feasible completion date: Potentially 2045-2050, or even earlier.

Source: "2010: Odyssey Two," by Arthur C. Clarke


1.
Hurled into the Sun

You will need: Earthmoving equipment

Method: Hurl the Earth into the Sun. Sending Earth on a collision course with the Sun is not as easy as one might think; even though you don't actually have to literally hit the Sun (send the Earth near enough to the Sun (within the Roche limit), and tidal forces will tear it apart), it's surprisingly easy to end up with Earth in a loopy elliptical orbit which merely roasts it for four months in every eight. But careful planning can avoid this.

This is impossible at our current technological level, but will be possible one day, I'm certain. In the meantime, may happen by freak accident if something comes out of nowhere and randomly knocks Earth in precisely the right direction. Earth's final resting place: a small globule of vaporized iron sinking slowly into the heart of the Sun.

Earliest feasible completion date: Via act of God: 25 years' time. Any earlier and we'd have already spotted the asteroid in question. Via human intervention: given the current level of expansion of space technology, 2250 at best.

Source: "Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers," by Grant Naylor.

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Europa n Titan--Next destinations of mankind???

Posted by VeNoM

I have written about the Extraterrestrial and the Alien Mania stuff here in my previous posts. Now this post is all about life beyond Planet Earth! Man has always been in a constant search for a hospitable place in our solar system and studies reveal that his long cherished dream of living off the earth may come true one day! Europa and Titan--The two moons may be the next destinations of mankind! This post should have come up right after the science explorations but its just that I recently ran into a documentary on History Channel called "Histories Classroom" and that is how my curiosity grew regarding this topic! And hence here I am trying to bring about yet another interesting aspect of Beyond-Nature! Lets digg deeper...

Europa

It is the sixth of Jupiter's known satellites and the fourth largest; it is the second of the Galilean moons. Europa is slightly smaller than the Earth's Moon. It has fascinated the humans for hundreds of years now ever since it was discovered by Galileo in 17th century.

It has been suggested that life may exist in Europa's under-ice ocean, perhaps subsisting in an environment similar to Earth's deep-ocean hydrothermal vents or the Antarctic Lake Vostok. Life in such an ocean could possibly be similar to microbial life on Earth in the deep ocean. So far, there is no evidence that life exists on Europa, but the likely presence of liquid water has spurred calls to send a probe there.

Until the 1970s, life, at least as the concept is generally understood, was believed to be entirely dependent on energy from the Sun. Plants on Earth's surface capture energy from sunlight to photosynthesize sugars from carbon dioxide and water, releasing oxygen in the process, and are then eaten by oxygen-respiring animals, passing their energy up the food chain. Even life in the ocean depths, where sunlight cannot reach, was believed to obtain its nourishment either from consuming organic detritus rained down from the surface waters or from eating animals that did. A world's ability to support life was thought to depend on its access to sunlight. However, in 1977, during an exploratory dive to the Galapagos Rift in the deep-sea exploration submersible Alvin, scientists discovered colonies of giant tube worms, clams, crustaceans, mussels, and other assorted creatures clustered around undersea volcanic features known as black smokers. These creatures thrive despite having no access to sunlight, and it was soon discovered that they comprise an entirely independent food chain. Instead of plants, the basis for this food chain was a form of bacterium that derived its energy from oxidization of reactive chemicals, such as hydrogen or hydrogen sulfide, that bubbled up from the Earth's interior. This chemosynthesis revolutionized the study of biology by revealing that life need not be sun-dependent; it only requires water and an energy gradient in order to exist. It opened up a new avenue in astrobiology by massively expanding the number of possible extraterrestrial habitats. Europa's unlit interior is now considered to be the most likely location for extant extraterrestrial life in the Solar System.

While the tube worms and other multicellular eukaryotic organisms around these hydrothermal vents respire oxygen and thus are indirectly dependent on photosynthesis, anaerobic chemosynthetic bacteria and archaea that inhabit these ecosystems provide a possible model for life in Europa's ocean. The energy provided by tidal flexing drives active geological processes within Europa's interior, just as they do to a far more obvious degree on its sister moon Io. While Europa, like the Earth, may possess an internal energy source from radioactive decay, the energy generated by tidal flexing would be several orders of magnitude greater than any radiological source. However, such an energy source could never support an ecosystem as large and diverse as the photosynthesis-based ecosystem on Earth's surface. Life on Europa could exist clustered around hydrothermal vents on the ocean floor, or below the ocean floor, where endoliths are known to habitate on Earth. Alternatively, it could exist clinging to the lower surface of the moon's ice layer, much like algae and bacteria in Earth's polar regions, or float freely in Europa's ocean. However, if Europa's ocean were too cold, biological processes similar to those known on Earth could not take place. Similarly, if it were too salty, only extreme halophiles could survive in its environment.

The Surface of Europa as pictured by satellite Galileo

In 2006, Robert Pappalardo, an assistant professor within the University of Colorado's space department, said, "We’ve spent quite a bit of time and effort trying to understand if Mars was once a habitable environment. Europa today, probably, is a habitable environment. We need to confirm this … but Europa, potentially, has all the ingredients for life … and not just four billion years ago … but today."

Regarding the info. about Ice-Surface, The Explorations and the History of this Moon we recommend you to visit the following sites..

Nine Planets

Solar Views

Europa-The Wiki Link



Titan

This brownish-yellow satellite might have appealed more to the TitanWorld-The Watch Manufacturers that they named their company after this moon . Known for its earth like atmosphere , rugged mountains and climatic features this satellite has been cited as a possible host for microbial extraterrestrial life or, at least, as a prebiotic environment rich in complex organic chemistry.

Scientists believe that the atmosphere of early Earth was similar in composition to the current atmosphere on Titan. Many hypotheses have developed that attempt to bridge the step from chemical to biological evolution. The Miller-Urey experiment and several following experiments have shown that with an atmosphere similar to that of Titan and the addition of UV radiation, complex molecules and polymer substances like tholins can be generated. The reaction starts with dissociation of nitrogen and methane, forming hydrocyan and ethyne. Further reactions have been studied extensively.
All of these experiments have led to the suggestion that enough organic material exists on Titan to start a chemical evolution analogous to what is thought to have started life on Earth. While the analogy assumes the presence of liquid water for longer periods than is currently observable, several theories suggest that liquid water from an impact could be preserved under a frozen isolation layer. It has also been observed that liquid ammonia oceans could exist deep below the surface; one model suggests an ammonia–water solution as much as 200 km deep beneath a water ice crust, conditions that, "while extreme by terrestrial standards, are such that life could indeed survive". Heat transfer between the interior and upper layers would be critical in sustaining any sub-surface oceanic life.

Detection of microbial life on Titan would depend on its biogenic effects. That the atmospheric methane and nitrogen are of biological origin has been examined, for example. Hydrogen has been cited as one molecule suitable to test for life on Titan: if methanogenic life is consuming atmospheric hydrogen in sufficient volume, it will have a measurable effect on the mixing ratio in the troposphere.

Despite these biological possibilities, there are formidable obstacles to life on Titan, and any analogy to Earth is inexact. At a vast distance from the Sun, Titan is frigid (a fact exacerbated by the anti-greenhouse effect of its cloud cover), and its atmosphere lacks CO2. Given these difficulties, the topic of life on Titan may be best described as an experiment for examining theories on conditions necessary prior to flourishing life on Earth. While life itself may not exist, the prebiotic conditions of the Titanian environment, and the possible presence of organic chemistry, remain of great interest in understanding the early history of the terrestrial biosphere. Using Titan as a prebiotic experiment involves not only observation through spacecraft, but laboratory experiment, and chemical and photochemical modelling on Earth.

An alternate explanation for life's hypothetical existence on Titan has been proposed: if life were to be found on Titan, it would be statistically more likely to have originated from Earth than to have appeared independently, a process known as panspermia. It is theorized that large asteroid and cometary impacts on Earth's surface have caused hundreds of millions of fragments of microbe-laden rock to escape Earth's gravity. Calculations indicate that a number of these would encounter many of the bodies in the solar system, including Titan.

Conditions on Titan could become far more habitable in future. Six billion years from now, as the Sun becomes a red giant, surface temperatures could rise to ~200K, high enough for stable oceans of water/ammonia mixture to exist on the surface. As the Sun's ultraviolet output decreases, the haze in Titan's upper atmosphere will deplete, lessening the anti-greenhouse effect on the surface and enabling the greenhouse created by atmospheric methane to play a far greater role. These conditions together could create an environment agreeable to exotic forms of life, and will subsist for several hundred million years, long enough for at least primitive life to form.



Landing on the Moon Titan

While the Cassini–Huygens mission was not equipped to provide evidence for biology or complex organics, it did support the theory of an environment on Titan that is similar, in some ways, to that of the primordial Earth.

There are a wide range of options for future missions to Titan that might address these and other questions, including orbiters, landers, balloons etc.

Additional Info.

Solar Views

planetary.org - Explore the Cosmos

Titan-A world of Rivers and lakes on Space.com

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A New Yard Stick to measure the expansion of Universe

Posted by Sunny


About seven billion years ago, the universe went into a sort of pubescent growth spurt that as far we know hasn't slowed down. Scientists call the growth stimulus dark energy, for lack of a better term or an understanding of the mechanics.

Now they've invented a tool called a laser comb that can measure expansion rates over time periods as short as 10 to 20 years.

Ronald Walsworth, with the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, offers this as an example: Say you want to figure out if something big, like your house, has moved a millimeter. If you counted on a measuring stick that chalked off miles, you'd never know. But if you had a ruler nicely hashed out by the millimeter, it'd be a cinch.

Laser combs refine the technique of spectroscopy, a process that picks apart a photon's journey from its source to our telescopes by identifying what chemicals it has passed through.

The fingerprints emerge by splitting the light into component wavelengths and comparing absorption lines in its spectrum with the wavelengths of laboratory sources.

The laser combs take a target's light signature one step further. If you've ever sat at a railroad stop and heard the train whistle, you know how it changes pitch as it comes closer or as it recedes down the tracks. The same shift takes place not only in sound waves, but in all wavelengths, including visible and ultraviolet light.


Click on the image n see a enlarged one to have a broader perspective


As the universe expands, distant galaxies, which are used to chart the universe's motion, move further away from Earth, with a corresponding shift in their spectra. Current tools to measure the shift would be like using the mile-marker to tag your house's re-location

Scientists know the universe has expanded over billions of years. The laser comb can refine that measurement to well within a human lifetime.

"We have to measure the movement of these distant galaxies to a few centimeters per second and follow this over decades. These speeds are barely faster than a snail's pace," said Antonio Manescau, with the European Southern Observatory.

The ESO says that feat would be like measuring the circumference of Earth to a millimeter (.062 inches).

"Never before have we had the chance to see the shape of the universe change before our eyes. We have inferred it from the cosmic background radiation, but it takes billions of years to see," said Walsworth. "With sensitive tools, in a human time scale we can see change."

To make the measurements, scientists use ultra-short pulses of laser light at many frequencies, each separated by a precise and constant interval. By comparing shifts in the spectra -- which may be a small as a molecule -- researchers expect to be able to determine, for example, how much a distant galaxy has moved over a 10- or 20-year period. The measurements, however, will have to wait until new, extremely large telescopes, currently under development, begin operations.

The technique also can be used to look for Earth-sized planets in other star systems.

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What's the worlds fastest supercomputer used for?

Posted by Sunny

The world's fastest supercomputer will probably never be known as the world's fastest supercomputer. RIKEN's MDGrape-3 is the first machine to break the petaflop barrier -- that's 1 quadrillion calculations (floating-point operations, to be specific) per second -- and it's three times faster than the currently ranked fastest computer in the world, IBM's BlueGene/L. But MDGrape-3 is so specialized that it can't run the software used to officially rank computing speed. What it can do is determine the effect of any chemical compound on one of the most intricate systems in the human body in a couple of seconds.


MDGrape-3 is designed for pharmaceutical research, specifically molecular dynamics simulation. In developing drugs, pharmaceutical companies have to analyze thousands on thousands of chemical compounds to find out how they'll affect the protein-bonding structures in the human body. Protein structures called enzymes are the building blocks that do all of the work within a cell, and the way these proteins bond with any drug compound introduced into the human body determines the body's response to that drug.

MDGrape-3 produces simulations of these molecular interactions. What takes most computers hours or days to analyze takes MDGrape-3 a few seconds. This functionality is invaluable in drug research, and it could drastically cut the research time involved in the development of new cures. A subsidiary of pharmaceutical giant Merck has already booked time on the machine.

Structurally speaking, MDGrape-3 is a parallel computing system consisting of two main sections: a primary server unit and a specialized-engines unit. The latter component is a cluster of 201 engines running proprietary chips developed by Riken specifically for MDGrape-3. It's this huge set of engines, running 24 MDGrape-3 chips each, that does the heavy protein-analysis lifting. Each chip has a maximum processing speed of 230 gigaflops (one billion operations per second).

The primary server unit manages the engine cluster. This parallel server setup runs two different types of processors: 65 servers run dual-core Intel 5000-series Xeon processors, 256 per server; and 37 servers run 3.3-GHz Intel Xeon processors, each with 2 MB of level 1 cache, at 74 processors per server. This hardware structure enables the 1-petaflop speed, which is the machine's theoretical maximum for certain processes.

MDGrape-3 took $9 million and about four years to build. And it's actually very efficient -- a total cost of $9 million breaks down to about $15 per gigaflop. The slower BlueGene/L cost about $140 per gigaflop to build.

BlueGene/L, which tops out at a theoretical 360 teraflops (trillion calculations per second), is also a biotechnology-specific machine. The advances in speed marked by these two supercomputers is indicative of a general trend in technology toward biologically-slanted systems. Some say the trend really started with the successful mapping of the human genome in 2000.

Regardless of what spurred the current biotechnology race, most experts agree that the logical end of the surge is a state of DNA-based medicine. In several decades, we could make an appointment with our doctor for a quick DNA analysis to find out what diseases we're at risk for and pop a single, gene-targeting pill that eliminates all of those foreseeable risks.


Know More:

SuperComputer @ Wikipedia

Top500 SuperComputing Sites - This project ranks and details the 500 most powerful known computer systems in the world

SuperComputing Online

Cluster Resources

Military SuperComputer


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Beyond Atlantis - The Lost Continent

Posted by Sunny


The riddle of Atlantis is among the greatest of the world's unsolved mysteries. Where, for a start, was the exact site of this huge island civilization? did it really, as early historians reported, vanish from the earth in a day and a night? Small wonder that since the earliest times scholars, archaeologists, historians, and occultists have kept up an almost ceaseless search for its precise whereabouts. Beginning with the Greek philosopher Plato's first description of the lost land that was apparently "the nearest thing to paradise on Earth," this chapter examines in detail the basic evidence for the existence and cataclysmic destruction of Atlantis.

(Note: Plato was not the first one to know about Atlantis. He was the first to describe it in detail. Pythagoras taught Plato what he knew)

Of all the world's unsolved mysteries, Atlantis is probably the biggest. Said to have been a huge island continent with an extraordinary civilization, situated in the Atlantic Ocean, it is reported to have vanished from the face of the earth in a day and a night. So complete was this devastation that Atlantis sank beneath the sea, taking with it every trace of its existence. Despite this colossal vanishing trick, the lost continent of Atlantis has exerted a mysterious influence over the human race for thousands of years. It is almost as though a primitive memory of the glorious days of Atlantis lingers on in the deepest recesses of the human mind. The passage of time has not diminished interest in the fabled continent, nor have centuries of skepticism by scientists succeeded in banishing Atlantis to obscurity in its watery grave. Thousands of books and articles have been written about the lost continent.


It has inspired the authors of novels, short stories, poems, and movies. Its name has been used for ships, restaurants, magazines, and even a region of the planet Mars. Atlantean societies have been formed to theorize and speculate about a great lost land. Atlantis has come to symbolize our dream of a once golden past. It appeals to our nostalgic longing for a better, happier world; it feeds out hunger for knowledge of mankind's true origins; and above all it offers the challenge of a genuinely sensational detective story.

Today the search for evidence of the existence of Atlantis continues with renewed vigor, using 20th century man's most sophisticated tools in the hope of discovering the continent that is said to have disappeared around 11,600 years ago. did Atlantis exist, or is it just a myth? Ours may be the generation that finally solves this tantalizing and ancient enigma.

~Atlantis~

" is said to have been the nearest thing to paradise that the earth has seen. It was a consortium of Concentric Islands as shown in fig. Fruits and vegetables grew in abundance in its rich soil. Fragrant flowers and herbs bloomed n the wooded slopes of its many beautiful mountains. All kinds of tame and wild animals roamed its meadows and magnificent forests, and drank from its rivers and lakes. Underground streams of wonderfully sweet water were used to irrigate the soil, to provide hot and cold fountains and baths for all the inhabitants. - There were even baths for the horses.

The earth was rich in precious metals, and the Atlanteans were wealthier than any people before or after with gold, silver, brass, tin, and ivory, and their principal royal palace was a marvel of size and beauty. Besides being skilled metallurgists, the Atlanteans were accomplished engineers. A huge and complex system of canals and bridges linked their capital city with the sea and the surrounding countryside, and there were magnificent docks and harbors for the fleets of vessels that carried on a flourishing trade with overseas countries.


Whether they lived in the city or the country, the people of Atlantis had everything they could possibly want for their comfort and happiness. They were a gentle, wise, and loving people, unaffected by their great wealth and prizing virtue above all things. In time, however, their noble nature became debased. No longer satisfied with ruling their own great land of plenty, they set about waging war on others. Their vast armies swept through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean region, conquering large areas of North Africa and Europe.

The Atlanteans were poised to strike against Athens and Egypt when the Athenian army rose up, drove them back to Gibraltar, and defeated them. Hardly had the Athenians tasted victory when a terrible cataclysm wiped out their entire army in a single day and night, and caused Atlantis to sink forever beneath the waves. Perhaps a few survivors were left to tell what happened. At all events, the story is said to have been passed down through many generations until, more than 9200 years later, it was made known to the world for the first time."


~Plato's Hypothesis~

The man who first committed the legend to paper was the Greek philosopher Plato, who in about 355 B.C. wrote about Atlantis in two of his famous dialogues, the Timaeus and the Critias. Although Plato claimed that the story of the lost continent was derived from ancient Egyptian records, no such records have ever come to light, nor has any direct mention of Atlantis been found in any surviving records made before Plato's time. Every book and article on Atlantis that has ever been published has been based on Plato's account; subsequent authors have merely interpreted or added to it.

~Questions Raised~

Why, ask the scholars, are there so many remarkable similarities between the ancient cultures of the Old and New Worlds? Why do we find the same plants and animals on continents thousands of miles apart when there is no known way for them to have been transported there?

How did the primitive peoples of many lands construct technological marvels, such as Stonehenge in Britain, the huge statues of Easter Island in the Pacific and the strange sacred cities of the Andes? Were they helped by a technically sophisticated race that has since disappeared?

Above all, why do the legends of people the world over tell the same story of an overwhelming natural disaster and the arrival or godlike beings who brought with them a new culture from a far? could the catastrophe that sank Atlantis have sent tidal waves throughout the glove, causing terrible havoc and destruction?

And were the 'gods' the remnants of the Atlantean race - the few survivors who were not on or near the island continent when it was engulfed?


Map of Atlantis by the 17th-century German scholar Athanasius Kircher. Kircher based his map on Plato's description of Atlantis as an island west of the Pillars of Hercules - the Strait of Gibraltar - and situated Atlantis in the ocean that has since been named after the legendary land. Unlike modern cartographers, he placed south at the top of the map, which puts America at the right.

Even without Plato's account, the quest for answers to these mysteries might have led to the belief by some in a 'missing link' between the continents - a land-bridge populated by a highly evolved people in the distant past. Nevertheless, it is the Greek philosopher's story that lies at the heart of all arguments for or against the existence of such a lost continent.

I have collected some useful info/sites which provide exaggerated info on these mystic questions:

Timaeus by Plato

Critias by Plato

The Wave that destroyed Atlantis - by Harvey Lille

Atlantis: the Myth - by Alan G.Hefner.

Atlantis Evidence Found in Spain and Ireland

The Sunken Kingdom by Peter James

Mystery of Atlantis
- Legend or Fact


A Rare Documentary on Atlantis:-

Running time:- 8 minutes.



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The Mayan Calendar Mystery - 2012 and Beyond

Posted by Sunny


Mayans - The Mayan Calendar is something profoundly different than just a system to mark off the passage of time. The Mayan Calendar is above all a prophetic calendar that may help us understand the past and foresee the future. It is a calendar of the Ages that describes how the progression of Heavens and Underworlds condition the human consciousness and thus the frames for our thoughts and actions within a given Age.

The Mayan Calendar is not predicting the end of the world 2012, but the start of a new era; the golden age.

The Mayan civilization predicted that on December 21, 2012 something will happen to the world we know. Something will happen that will change our civilization, value systems and the way we know human civilization forever.

What does that means? What did the Mayan see through their spiritual wisdom?


According to scientists and technologists something strange is happening behind the scene. The terrestrial and solar polar reversal peaks are coming within three weeks of that day, December 21, 2012. Innumerable UFOs are scouting our skies regularly and increasing as we approach that day. The tectonic plate shifts, underwater volcanoes, earthquakes, landslides and Tsunamis are increasing at rates never seen before. The solar flares are increasing. The earth’s magnetosphere and ionosphere are experiencing strange disturbances. The numbers of typhoons and cyclones have increased many folds. The number of floods and droughts has increased beyond imaginations in the last ten years.

Scientists who look beyond conventional science point out that that the Hyperspace that contain our Universe is also showing signs that something strange is happening in our universe. The multidimensional time research is showing that a parallel universe may be predicting strange effects.

According to some scientists it is possible that another Universe is slowly starting to claim a spatial dimension in our physical Universe. It is also possible that we will face major calamities because of the polar reversal in the Sun and in Earth. If that happens, it is possible that the hyperspace has to adjust the suction force known as gravity and Electromagnetic force fields to keep the earth and the solar system intact.

The biggest clue to what will happen comes from astrophysicists. There is a big possibility that the simultaneous polar reversal in earth and sun will throw the solar system out of whack. That will cause massive upheaval in the earth. At that point of time, the extraterrestrials will officially show up and put “cosmic seat belts” around us as they apply the superpower of the Hyperspace to bring the solar system back to what it is today.

According to think tanks, this has happened before. The extraterrestrials take care of the earth and the solar system whenever the solar system faces challenges like that.



December 21st, 2012 - Modern astronomy can tell us a lot about the facts of where we will be in space at that time, where our planets will be, etc. The thing is that the ancient Mayans, Sumerians and the Egyptians knew about this long ago, and left their art recordings behind for us.

What do we know about this date? Well, we know that on that date, our the bodies in our solar system will all be in alignment. The Transit of Venus will occur once again due to Venus passing in front of the Sun. Our Sun will also be in the peak of its solar cycle, causing some groups to speculate that the magnetic poles of our Earth and possibly other planets could be shifted or reversed altogether.

Besides all this activity occurring in our Solar System, the solar system itself will be in perfect alignment with the elliptical plane of our Milky Way galaxy. It will be the first time this has occurred in gazillions of years.



Also, the area of space that our solar system will occupy at that time will be in the middle of a strange nebulous cloud that scientists have been studying and tracking for a few years now. We do not have a clear understanding of what the clouds effects could be on our Solar System and the Earth itself.

1) Our sun will be at the peak of a Solar hissy fit.
2) Our planets will be in alignment.
3) Our entire Solar System will be aligned with the elliptical plane of the galaxy.
4) We will be in the middle of a strange nebula.

Take this modern astronomical knowledge, and apply it to the ancient legends of our ancestors. The Mayans refereed to this period as the "Cycle of Civilization." They even accurately predicted these alignments to the date, thousands of years ago. And they chose to end their calender on this date. Not to restart it, but to END it.

No one can know for sure what will happen during the strange times of late 2012, but as the date draws nearer, we are certain to learn more.


Video:

This is a short film I found on Youtube made about the mayan calendar . They tried to explain who the mayans are and what the calendar is all about along with the mystery behind 2012.

Author of the Film: notarecordplayer



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World's Most Powerful Magnet Under Construction

Posted by Sunny


Using the strongest materials known to man, scientists are building the most powerful electromagnet in the world -- one that won't blow up a split second after it's turned on.

The entire magnet will be a combination of coil sets weighing nearly 18,000 pounds and powered by jolts from a massive 1,200-megajoules motor generator. Once activated, the new magnet should be about two million times more powerful than the average refrigerator magnet.

"The new magnet at the High Field Lab is a fantastic leap forwards in terms of our capability as a scientific community to explore materials under extreme conditions," said Ian Fisher, a scientist at Stanford University.

"In several cases one needs to go to these sorts of extremes to fundamentally understand materials" used in high-temperature superconductors and other applications, said Fisher.

The electromagnet consists of two parts. The outer section, or outsert, will be a cylinder, 1.5 meters (4.9 feet) in diameter and 1.5 meters tall, and solid except for a small hole, less than 8 inches wide, bored through the middle.

Inside that hole rests the insert, nine coils made of copper and strengthened with silver wire as thin as 100 atoms across. Together, the copper and silver create the strongest material known to man, according to Greg Boebinger, Director of the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory in Florida. The magnet is being built at the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

The pressures generated inside the insert will be equivalent to 200 sticks of dynamite going off together, or about 30 times the pressure at the bottom of the ocean.

Very few things can survive those kinds of forces for long -- including the new magnet.

The scientists expect each $20,000 insert to survive about 100 pulses. The $8 million outsert should last about 10,000 pulses. Each time the magnet pulses it bends the copper and silver wires, creating tiny cracks in the metal. The cracks in the copper run into the silver wires, which stops the cracks from spreading.

"It's like reinforced concrete," said Boebinger.

The copper acts like like the concrete, strong and tough. The silver acts like the steel rebars running through the concrete, providing flexibility.

Together the inner and outer magnets can already create 90 teslas.

Teslas measure the pull of a magnetic field. Even one tesla is quite powerful. The Earth's magnetic field is about 50 microteslas. An average MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) machine ranges from 0.5 to 1.5 teslas.

The scientists hope that within months they can develop the new electromagnet to reach their target goal of 100 teslas.

This won't be the first 100-tesla electromagnet. Technically it won't even be the world's most powerful magnet. Electromagnets as strong as 1,000 teslas have been created before. The new electromagnet will be the world's first reusable 100-tesla magnet.

All other magnets of this power were one-and-done. The powerful forces the other electromagnets created tore themselves, and usually the samples being studied, apart milliseconds after they were turned on. Those magnets have their uses, says Boebinger, but destroying samples can be a problem and building new magnets can be expensive.

Studying the same material over and over without destroying it could help scientists tease out the properties of superconductors and other novel materials, said Boebinger, who points out that previous magnet work at the lab helped produce neodymium magnets that enabled wireless phones, cordless drills, and other handheld electronic devices.

New materials, like iron oxyarsenide, could eventually lead to high definition MRI scans or power lines that don't lose any energy to heat and would save consumers millions of dollars each year.

Eventually, however, even this electromagnet will break under the incredible pressures, and when it does it will be loud.

"They have to evacuate the entire building when they turn the magnet on," said Boebinger. "A magnetic disassembly will make a big boom."

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The Large Hadron Rap Video

Posted by Sunny



Check out this video for the Large Hadron Rap, by far the greatest physics rap of all time. The flow is halfway decent, and it accurately covers a lot of knowledge related to particle physics and the LHC. Its by Katherine McAlpine, alter-ego of a science writer currently working at the LHC.

The video, posted on YouTube, begins with a narration, a beat, and images of the scientists in lab coats leaning out the windows of a compact CERN lab car approaching the facility as they move their hands to the beat.

Rapper Alpinekat, a CERN trainee whose real name is Kate MacAlpine, explains the theory that the Higgs Field is an invisible force through which particles move. Some, like the proton, move quickly. "It has no mass, but something heavy, like the top quark is dragging its --- (!)," MacAlpine explains as her words appear on the bottom of the screen.

The "Large Hadron Rap" explains, in rhyming terms that could be understood by elementary school students, how scientists plan to send protons speeding through an underground tunnel at near-light speed to make them collide. It also provides clear and simple explanations about dark matter, antimatter, undiscovered dimensions, and ions.

The video shows clips of the equipment and scientists dancing in the environment where they hope to test the big bang theory, learn about dark matter, or refute the validity of theories about matter, mass, and how the universe formed.

"The LHCb accelerates the protons and the lead and the things that it discovers will rock you in the head," MacAlpine raps in the song's refrain.

More than 13,200 people have rated the video, which scores five stars for quality according to YouTube users' ratings. About 9000 comments and more than 150 video responses were listed with the video as of Friday. One user reported, "I just got my geek on." The video was "favorited" more than 17,000 times. It was originally posted in late July.

The video ends with the narrator slowly saying, "Ah yeah, our understanding of the universe is about to change thanks to the Large Hadron Collider. This is C-to-the-E-to-the-R-to-the-N, coming straight out of Geneva," before MacAlpine signs off with, "Alpinekat, over and out."

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The Time Dimension Explained!!

Posted by VeNoM

So when have you last seen a Science Fiction Movie where Travel to Future was just as boarding a Flight to Mumbai!!??? :D The other day I was searching for an Article regarding the Black Holes and Anti-matter and I stumbled upon this Article By Ted Bunn . In his article he mentions about the Travel To Future.. He talks about a Phenomenon an Illusion which we face when we try to look beyond the Horizon of the Black-Hole. This article raised one issue that caught my eye. Yes Iam talking about whether Time can be Considered as another Dimension?? Incidentally Einstein seems to have mentioned Time as a Dimension in his 'Theory of Relativity'. Now this has raised many doubts than it solved any!


CAN WE TRAVEL TO OUR FUTURE??? CAN WE PREDICT THE FORTHCOMING?? CAN I EVER CHANGE MY BIRTH CERTIFICATE?? WILL I BE ABLE TO SHARE MY LAND WITH DINOSAURS?? The answers to these strange questions may lie with the concept of the 'Time-Travel' becoming a FACT.

To make matters easy let me put an Article that rather compelled me not to think beyond Future...! :P

Time and the Fourth Dimension

Now it is debatable whether time is actually a fourth dimension. But, for sake of argument, let's assume that is. The implications of this are threefold. One is that all time, past, present, and future exist together in some way and that what we consider time passing is really only our being traveling along a fourth dimension from past to present to future. It also seems to imply the possibility of traveling in the reverse direction from the present to the past or speeding up our travel forward into the future. Thirdly, from the foregoing you can only come to conclusion that the future is predetermined, since it already exists and cannot be changed.

If you could view the fourth dimension (if it is time), you would see yourself extending to the point where you were born in one direction and up to the point of your death in the future. The same with everything around you. If not too distant in the fourth dimension, you could view any object from the point of its origin to its dissolution and all the changes that occurred to it.

Now a person who could travel into time who have some of the powers of a fourth dimensional person. He could appear in a locked room simply by going back in time when the room was not locked. He could disappear and appear somewhere else. He could predict the future.

In a previous paragraph, I stated that if time is the fourth dimension, our future is predetermined. This would also hold for the past. Thus, a time traveler who went to the past would not have a choice. He would by necessity have to have arrived from the future at the exact time of his arrival. This implies no free will; even our thoughts and actions are predetermined. To get around this problem and other paradoxes involved with time travel, one must conjecture other dimensions in which one can travel at right angles from not only to the usual three but from the fourth time dimension. This introduces the concept of parallel time.

The concept of parallel time is that starting from the beginning of the universe, each moment introduces infinite possibilities and each possibility exists somewhere (possibly in a fifth or higher dimension). So, if I go back in time and prevent my mother from meeting my father, two universes exist, one where I did not prevent my parents from meeting and one where I did. When I return to what I consider my own present, I actually return to a different universe from the one where I started from, one in which I was never born.

Joe Vadalma



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Crystal Ball-the Fortune Untold

Posted by VeNoM

Who doesn't want to know his future??? Its this instinct of man that brought the art of or rather the science of Fortune Telling into our existence. Well.. many of us might have wondered as how these fortune tellers actually make their so called prophesies! And sometimes they turn out to be true, but not many believe these Fortune Tellers.. even I don't for that matter. There are many a ways as how the fortune is told. Some resort to Palm Reading and some use Crystal balls while some turn to magic cards. Let us have a look at the Crystal Balls.

So What is a Crystal ball???

A crystal ball is a crystal or glass ball believed by some people to aid clairvoyance. It is sometimes known as a shew stone. A body of water, either in a container or on the ground, used for this purpose, is called a scrying pool.

History

Celtic tribes, known to exist in Britain as early as 2,000 B.C., were unified by a priesthood known as Druids. Druids are one of the earliest known peoples to have used crystals in divination. It's interesting to note that Druid religion had similarities to megalithic religion of an "earlier" Britain, thus it is possible the first use of crystal divination might have come from them.

Later, during central Europe's Medieval Period (500 – 1500 AD), seers, wizards, sorcerers, psychics, gypsies, fortune tellers, and all other types of diviners also used crystals to "see" into the past, present, or future.

Due to its transparent nature, a natural gemstone called Beryllium Aluminum Silicate (Beryl), was often used for alleged divination. Scottish Highlanders termed these objects "stones of power." Though early crystal balls were made from Beryl, they were later replaced by rock crystal, an even more transparent rock.

Scrying

The art or process of "seeing" is known as "scrying," whereby images are seen in crystals, or other mediums such as water, and are interpreted as meaningful information. The "information" gleaned then is used to make important decisions in one's life (i.e. love, marriage, finances, travel, business, etc).

When the technique of scrying is used with crystals, or any transparent body, it is known as crystallomancy or crystal gazing.

Crystal balls in State magic

Crystal balls are popular props used in mentalism acts by stage magicians. Such routines, in which the performer answers audience questions by means of various ruses, are known as "C. G." (Crystal Gazing) acts. One of the most famous C. G. performers of the 20th century, Claude Alexander, was often billed as "Alexander the Crystal Seer."

Extras

Let the Crystal ball Give you the answers , An online Interactive Astrology --> Click here

Ask Anything--Know your Future --> Click here

Mystical Ball.com

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Universe Secrets revealed:Big bang machine

Posted by Sunny


Mankind's Biggest scientific experiment to be conducted on Wednesday this week....
With this experiment we are going to know the answers for the questions which have been a mystery for us since ages......
It is the BIG BANG EXPERIMENT..
the experiment is being conducted by scientists from more than 112 countries only with an aim to unravel the mysteries of universe..
The experiment is done with the help of a huge machine named Large Hadron Collider (LHC)...

The most powerful physics experiment ever built, the Large Hadron Collider will re-create the conditions just after the Big Bang in an attempt to answer fundamental questions of science and the universe itself.

The Large Hadron Collider – a £4bn, 18-mile-long atom-smasher buried 300ft underground on the Swiss-French border...

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will smash two beams of particles head-on at super-fast speeds, recreating the conditions in the Universe moments after the Big Bang.

Alice time projection chamber (Cern/A. Saba)
The Alice detector will investigate the moments after the Big Bang
Scientists hope to see new particles in the debris of these collisions, revealing fundamental new insights into the nature of the cosmos.

They will be looking for new physics beyond the Standard Model – the framework devised in the 1970s to explain how sub-atomic particles interact.

The Standard Model comprises 16 particles – 12 matter particles and four force-carrier particles. The Standard Model has worked remarkably well so far.

But it cannot explain the best known of the so-called four fundamental forces: gravity; and it describes only ordinary matter, which makes up but a small part of the total Universe.

Also, one of the most important particles in the Standard Model – the Higgs boson – has yet to be found in an experiment.

Today, the Standard Model is regarded as incomplete, a mere stepping stone to something else. So the LHC should help reinvigorate physics' biggest endeavour: a grand theory to explain all physical phenomena in Nature.

However, some physicists point out that Nature has a habit of throwing curve balls. And some of the most exciting discoveries at the LHC could be those that no-one expects.

THE HUNT FOR THE HIGGS

There is an essential ingredient missing from the Standard Model. Without it, none of the 16 particles in the scheme would have any mass.

An extra particle is required to provide all the others with mass – the Higgs boson. This idea was proposed in 1964 by physicists Peter Higgs, Francois Englert and Robert Brout.

According to their theory, particles acquire mass through their interactions with an all-pervading field, called the Higgs field, which is carried by the Higgs boson. It is the only Standard Model particle that has yet to be observed experimentally.

CMS (M. Brice/Cern)
The CMS is one of two LHC experiments looking for the Higgs

As such, the search for the Higgs has become something of a cause celebre in particle physics. Finding the Higgs is one of the main science objectives for the LHC.

The Atlas and CMS experiments are both designed to see it, if it is there. This means that scientists working on these respective experiments will be competing to see it first, once the LHC begins its "science run" sometime in 2009.

The US Tevatron particle accelerator, though less powerful than the LHC, is also engaged in the hunt for the Higgs.

IN THE DARK

All the matter that we can see in the Universe – planets, stars and galaxies – makes up a minuscule 4% of what is actually out there. The rest is dark energy (which accounts for 70% of the cosmos) and dark matter (26%).

Dark energy cannot be observed directly, but it is responsible for speeding up the expansion of the Universe – a phenomenon that can be detected in astronomical observations.

Artist's impression of dark matter distribution (Nasa/Esa/Richard Massey-Caltech)
Astronomers have mapped dark matter's distribution, but have no idea what it is

Like dark energy, dark matter can only be detected indirectly, as it does not emit or reflect enough light to be seen. But its presence can be inferred through its effects on galaxies and galaxy clusters.

Physicists know virtually nothing about the nature of either dark energy or dark matter. But they can speculate.

According to one idea, dark matter could be made up of "supersymmetric particles" - massive particles that are partners to those already known in the Standard Model.

A leading dark matter candidate is the neutralino, the lightest of these "super-partners". And some theoretical physicists have proposed a link between the Higgs mechanism and dark energy.

MIRROR, MIRROR

Each basic particle of "ordinary" matter has its own anti-particle. Matter and antimatter have the same mass, but opposite electric charge.

For example, a proton has an anti-particle called an anti-proton (a proton with a negative charge). An electron has an anti-particle called a positron (an electron with a positive charge).

Galactic cloud of anti-matter (W. Purcell/Nasa/Oss/Compton Observatory)
What happened to the anti-matter that emerged from the Big Bang?
In the same way that an ordinary proton and electron can come together to form a hydrogen atom, an anti-proton and a positron can form an atom of anti-hydrogen.

When a particle of ordinary matter meets its anti-particle, the two disappear in a flash, as their mass is transformed into energy.

They are said to "annihilate" one another. But equal amounts of matter and anti-matter must have been produced in the Big Bang.

So why did matter and anti-matter not completely annihilate each another after the birth of the Universe?

Today, we live in a Universe almost entirely composed of ordinary matter. Scientists will use the LHC to investigate why this is, and what happened to all the anti-matter.

DOUBLE TROUBLE

Attempts to unify gravity with the other fundamental forces have come to a startling prediction: that every known particle has a massive "shadow" partner particle.

Atlas wheel (Cern)
Atlas is one of the experiments that could find evidence for supersymmetry

All particles are classified as either fermions or bosons. A particle in one class has superpartner in the other class, "balancing the books" and doubling the number of particles in the Standard Model.

For example, the superpartner of an electron (a fermion) is called a selectron (a boson). Evidence for supersymmetry would enable the "unification" of three fundamental forces - the strong, weak, and electromagnetic – helping to explain why particles have the masses they have.

It would also give a boost to string theory – one stab at a grand "theory of everything". But string theory is not dependent on discovering evidence for supersymmetry.

OTHER DIMENSIONS
In addition to the four dimensions we already know about, string theory predicts the existence of six more.

Some physicists even think the existence of these extra dimensions could explain why gravity is so much weaker than the other fundamental forces. Perhaps, they argue, we are not feeling its full effects.

This might be explained if its force was being shared with other dimensions. If these extra dimensions do exist, the LHC could be the first accelerator to detect them experimentally.

At high energies, physicists could see evidence of particles moving between our world and these unseen realms. For example, they could see particles suddenly disappear into one of these dimensions.

Alternatively, particles originating from an extra dimension could suddenly appear in our world.

THE HOLE TRUTH

According to some physicists, the LHC can operate at high enough energies to generate mini-black holes.

However, the vast majority of particle physicists say there is no need for alarm. If any should be created, they should evaporate quickly.

How a black hole might look if it is generated in the collider (Atlas)
How a black hole might look if it is generated in the collider
A recent report dealing with the collider's safety acknowledged the possibility that the LHC could create these primordial black holes.

The report says: "If microscopic black holes were to be singly produced by colliding the quarks and gluons inside protons, they would also be able to decay into the same types of particles that produced them.”

The suggestion that black holes could be made in the LHC has stoked fears in the online world that one of these micro-black holes could swell in size, swallowing up the Earth.

In March, plaintiffs requested an injunction in a US court stopping the LHC from switching on.

However, physicists stress that any such phenomena would be short-lived and thus would pose no threat to our planet.


Building the LHC

The Large Hadron Collider is not just an extraordinary science experiment, it is also a remarkable engineering undertaking. Just getting it built is an astonishing story in itself.

THE CHALLENGE
Servicing ATLAS
The LHC took 10,000 scientists a total of 14 years to assemble

How do you build a "Big Bang Machine"? That was the challenge which scientists at Cern began to ponder in the early 1980s, when the idea for the Large Hadron Collider was born.

Cern's governing council wanted to build a kind of time machine that could open a window to how the Universe appeared in the first microseconds of its existence.

If it could recreate the fleeting moments 13.73 billion years ago, when the fundamental building blocks of the cosmos took shape, then the world we live in today would be brought into much sharper focus.

It could discover how matter prevailed over antimatter, learn how dark matter was formed, and catch our first glimpse of the elusive Higgs boson - a "missing jigsaw piece" in our model of the universe.

We might even find evidence of the existence of other dimensions. But to conjure up these conditions, the Cern council new it needed to perform an engineering miracle.

ATLAS
The 12-storey ATLAS detector weighs in at 7,000 tonnes

To generate the necessary high energies, the designers required a particle accelerator more magnificently complex than any machine ever built.

Beams of protons would be hurled together at 99.9999999% of the speed of light, in conditions colder than the space between the stars and each travelling with as much energy as a car at the speed of 1,600km/h.

And yet the fruits of these explosions - high-energy particles - would decay and disappear from view in less than a trillionth of a second.

To "photograph" these valuable prizes would require a detector as large as a five storey building, yet so precise, it could pinpoint a particle with an accuracy of 15 microns - 20 times thinner than a human hair.

How on earth do you build a machine like that? The journey took 14 years, more than 10,000 scientists, from 40 countries, and a financial injection anticipated at up to 6.2bn euros - four times the original budget. But it was achieved, on time. Well, almost.

THE LARGE HADRON COLLIDER
LHC Dipole magnet
The last of the LHC's 1,700 dipole magnets is lowered into place

The plans for the Large Hadron Collider began to gather momentum in the early 1980s, inspired by the success of its predecessor at Cern, a collider known as the Large Electron Positron (LEP).

But it was not until 1994 that the formal proposal for the LHC was ratified by Cern's member states, and the engineering work began.

The accelerator would be housed in a near-circular 27km-long tunnel, buried 50m-175m underneath the Jura mountains, criss-crossing the Swiss-French border. The tunnel was already in place - being the once occupied by LEP, which was eventually disassembled in 2000.

Inside the LHC vacuum pipe, two parallel beams of subatomic particles (protons or lead ions) would hurtle in opposite directions at record energies.

Crashing together at specially designated junctions, they would release unstable, high-energy particles - including, perhaps, the elusive Higgs Boson.

To generate a magnetic field powerful enough to steer the high-energy particles around the pipe requires 1,740 superconducting magnets, which together required some 40,000 leak-tight welds and 65,000 "splices" of superconducting cables.

If you added all the filaments of these strands together, they would stretch to the Sun and back five times, with enough left over for a few trips to the Moon.

In order to conduct, the magnets must be cooled to within a couple of degrees of "absolute zero", the theoretical limit for how cold anything can get. This requires a constant supply of liquid helium pumped down from eight over-ground refrigeration plants - about 400,000 litres per year in total. Enough to fill 1000 swimming pools.

THE DETECTORS
CMS cavern dig2
Engineers excavating the cavern for CMS encountered serious difficulty

At the junctions where particles collide, four enormous detectors have been designed to observe the microscopic wreckage.

Between 1996 and 1998, approval was granted for four giant "experiments" - Alice, Atlas, CMS and LHCb - to be housed in four enormous underground caverns, dug strategically around the collider loop.

Excavating these caverns out of sand, gravel and rock was a considerable feat. In the case of the 7,000 tonne ATLAS detector, it took two years to burrow a cavern large enough to hold a 12-storey building.

But while Atlas may be the largest cavern, it was CMS - 10km up the ring below the village of Dessy - which proved the most problematic at the excavation stage.

The cavern shaft had to be bored through a 50m layer of glacial deposits, including fast flowing water, which threatened to flood the shaft. Engineers repelled these underground rivers by piping super-chilled brine down the shaft, allowing a wall of ice 3m thick to form around the circumference.

It took six months to freeze the walls of the two CMS shafts. But while the barrier worked initially, the water eventually broke through, forcing engineers to first pump down liquid nitrogen to turn the area into "Siberian permafrost", in the words of Austin Ball, CMS Technical Coordinator.

MANUFACTURING PARTS
Transporting magnets
LHC components were transported to Cern from all over the world

Building the components of both the accelerator and the detectors was a truly international effort.

In the case of the 12,500-tonne CMS detector, the coiled strands of its central solenoid magnet - all 50km of them - began their life in Finland, before travelling to factories in Grenoble, Neuchatel and Genoa, to be braided, coated, and welded.

After being shipped to Marseille, they went up the river to Macon, where they were unpacked and driven by lorry under the mountains to Cern.

In fact, the diameter of the magnet was restricted to ensure it was just narrow enough that components could squeeze through the tunnels. The clearance was a matter of centimetres.

The CMS magnet is the most powerful solenoid ever built - conducting a current of 12,000 amperes - to create a magnetic field 100,000 times stronger than the Earth's.

ASSEMBLING THE DETECTORS
CMS unit lowered
The detector units of CMS were squeezed in with centimetres to spare

The next problem, of course, was how to get a 45m-long, 25m-high, 7,000-tonne detector, through a shaft hole 20m wide.

The answer of course is to do it in bits. ATLAS was lowered piece by piece over several years, and assembled almost entirely in the subterranean cavern.

The largest piece - the barrel toroid magnet - fitted down the cavern shaft with only 10cm of clearance on either side.

But the building of the detectors is not all heavy engineering. Layer upon layer of electronic sensors had to be wired and connected by hand, which meant up to 300 people a day working in the cavern cramped against each other.

Squeezing each piece into place was "like solving a wooden puzzle" - there is only one possible way of doing it, according to Professor Andy Parker of Cambridge University, one of the founders of Atlas.

"Everything fits together like Russian dolls. I saw one design for Atlas which fitted together, but you couldn't assemble it, because there was no room to move the pieces past each other. Every single millimetre of space was fought over," he said.

The CMS detector, on the other hand, was largely assembled above ground, in several enormous units.

The largest, at 2,000 tonnes (the weight of five jumbo jets, or one-third of the weight of the Eiffel tower) took 10 hours to lower down a 100m shaft, with a clearance of 20cm either side. The world's largest electromagnet had to be handled with extreme care.

Its cylindrically arranged silicon wafer detectors contain a vast network of micro-circuitry - including 73,000 radiation-hard, low-noise microelectronic chips, almost 40,000 analogue optical links and 1,000 power supply units.

To manufacture these required an entirely new method of auto-assembly.

PROBLEMS DURING TESTING
Unlinked magnets
Failure of a magnet in testing delayed the LHC start-up by almost a year

Though the LHC was originally slated to begin operations in late 2007, the entire project was set back after a failure in one of the quadrapole magnets used to focus the beam, which buckled during testing.

This meant all similar magnets would have to be redesigned and replaced.

Other, less serious problems arose due to with leaky plumbing of liquid helium, and also when some copper "fingers" used to ensure electrical continuity between magnets buckled when the magnets were warmed up.

GOING OVERBUDGET

The final tab for the LHC is expected to come in at a colossal 6.4bn euros, four times the original budget set by the Cern Council in 1995.

But that sum still represents good value for money, according to Dr Chris Parkes, of Glasgow University, UK, who works on the LHCb detector.

He said: "Tom Hanks is to appear in the movie of Dan Brown's Angels and Demons, which involves scientists at Cern making anti-matter. But the new experiment at the LHC to understand anti-matter cost less than Tom Hanks will earn from the movie."



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