Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensive)

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Winnow
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Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensive)

Post by Winnow »

...because I can't get enough when it comes to this stuff and visual aids always help.

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If the images don't show, I'll repost them later. I did notice one error where they show our Sun and then the Sun's Solar system being smaller than the Sun.

VY Canis Majoris is....HUGE! I thought Betelgeuse was big until I saw the image above.

I posted the picture of the 10,000 galaxies awhile back but this series of size comparisons drives home how small a space in the night sky those 10K galaxies fit into.

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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensive)

Post by Canelek »

That is a good size primer for sure.

Also, I think it is high time we give our moon a new name. I'd be OK with Luna.

Aliens say, "You didn't name your moon?"
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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensive)

Post by Winnow »

Canelek wrote:That is a good size primer for sure.

Also, I think it is high time we give our moon a new name. I'd be OK with Luna.

Aliens say, "You didn't name your moon?"
Our Sun = Sol

Our Moon = Unit-Zappa

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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensive)

Post by Canelek »

Winnow wrote:
Canelek wrote:That is a good size primer for sure.

Also, I think it is high time we give our moon a new name. I'd be OK with Luna.

Aliens say, "You didn't name your moon?"
Our Sun = Sol

Our Moon = Unit-Zappa
Well played! :D
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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensive)

Post by Aabidano »

The moon needs to be named "Bob". Just because.

(everything should be named Bob, except people)
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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensi

Post by Winnow »

We Might Totally Misunderstand Galaxies, NASA Experiment Finds

By Eric Mack, www.forbes.com
November 6th, 2014

The dark spaces in between the massive but often far-flung galaxies of the universe are not as dark as they seem, and that has scientists redefining what a galaxy actually is.

An experiment involving NASA sounding rockets has detected an unexpected amount of infrared light in those dark spaces, creating a widely dispersed background glow as bright as all known galaxies combined. This background light has been previously observed by NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope, but this new data from the Cosmic Infrared Background Experiment, or CIBER, supports the notion that the source is a multitude of solitary stars rather than leftover light from the early days of galaxy formation.

“The light looks too bright and too blue to be coming from the first generation of galaxies,” said James Bock, principal investigator of the CIBER project from Caltech and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab. “The simplest explanation, which best explains the measurements, is that many stars have been ripped from their galactic birthplace, and that the stripped stars emit on average about as much light as the galaxies themselves.”

The implications of the findings are that space may not be as easily defined as it appears. What look like dark spaces might actually be populated by singular stars too dim for us to see today. And galaxies may not have the relatively sharp edges seen through our telescopes today. Instead, they may stretch for light years into the darkness, like the rural outskirts of a metropolitan area that throws off less light, but is populated by interesting and lively residents nonetheless.

Results from two of four CIBER flights, both of which launched from White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico in 2010 and 2012, appear this week in the journal Science. Future experiments will test whether or not lonesome stars are in fact the source of the cosmic background glow.
Trying to estimate the number of stars in the universe seems pretty futile when new science discoveries could end up doubling the already insane number of stars.

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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensi

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The above shows the orbits of our solar system's planets out to Jupiter along with all the asteroids currently tracked.

That's a lot of asteroids. Looks crowded. But then consider this scaled image:

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As massive as the outer gas planets are, they still all fit in between the Earth and the Moon. Shows one, how far away the Moon is from the earth and two, how incredibly empty most of the solar system is, even when you consider all of those asteroids. Bonus, three, how amazing is was for humans to make it to the moon in the 60's.

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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensi

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Great article on Gizmodo about the New Horizons probe as it reaches Pluto this Tuesday.

http://gizmodo.com/how-did-we-get-to-pl ... 1716533356

Read it. Good mind boggling stuff.

If you sit and actually ponder the brains and technology that went into this mission (and most probe missions) it should really open your eyes as to how amazing this really is.

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Traveling at a million miles a day for most of its journey, using Jupiter's gravitational well to give it a speed boost.

The outter planets make Jupiter and Saturn look like inner planets when scaled and you see how really close the Earth is to the Sun.

Another interesting note. Pluto takes 248 years to orbit the Sun. We happened to be alive when Pluto was actually closer then Neptune to the Sun from 1979-1999. (check the orbits above) I actually had to appeal a trivia question in high school when I was asked to name the planets from closest to farthest and was marked wrong because I said Pluto and then Neptune. I felt pretty bad-ass correcting teachers that day!

Most of you younger people didn't get to appreciate the wonder and awe as the Voyagers made their journey past most of the planets in the late 70's. New Horizons is your small glimpse into the wonder that was far greater in scale as we saw Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune and their satellites up close for the first time.

There are no more outer planetary probes scheduled. (Uranus. Neptune, Pluto) New Horizons took 9 years (which is amazingly fast) to get to Pluto. When you conside how much farther away Pluto will be over the next couple hundred years, it makes this mission even more special. Don't expect anything in the near future or for at least 20 years. Not surprising since it's been 43+ years since we were last on the Moon.

It sucks how quickly the general public loses interest in space exploration.

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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensi

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It’s hard to wrap our heads around the size of our galaxy, let alone the Universe. At 100,000 light-years across, it would take the New Horizons space probe—the fastest object ever launched by humans—some 1,844,000,000 years to travel from one side of the Milky Way to the other (it’s currently moving away from Pluto at 58,536 km/h or 36,373 mph).

But there are structures even larger than single galaxies. Back in 2013, astronomers discovered a concentration of galaxy clusters stretching some 10-billion light-years across. There are also cosmic filaments to consider—massive strands of rarefied and highly ionized gas which stretch like spider webs across the observable Universe linking galaxy clusters across billions upon billions of light-years. And then there’s the Universe as a whole, an expanse of expanding space that appears to be about 92 billion light-years in diameter. And that’s just the observable Universe.

But when it comes to size, there’s more than the universe’s cosmic vastness to consider. There’s also its tremendous scale. Heading in the opposite direction, the microscopic world is similarly vast in scope. There are roughly 9.6 x 1024 molecules in a single glass of water, while the human body is comprised of about 7 x 1027 atoms, where the size of a single atom is about 10-8 centimeters. But once we get down to the Planck length, roughly 10-33 centimeters, we enter into the realm of the absurdly small. Beyond this scale no meaningful measurements can be made, and classical physics breaks down.
Impossible to grasp scales on that level but it's fun to try!

Every mind boggling reference to the scale of the universe can be countered with equally stupefying scales in the micro world. If humans end up being the "middle ground" between large and small, then I think there is a whole lot more beyond the observable universe out there...as in the observable universe being on the scale of something like a molecule in comparison the the rest of the "multiverse". Hindered by the speed of light, so far we can only see 13 billion light years away. As the "one inch of sky = 10,000 galaxies" demonstrate previously in this thread, 13 billion light years out is jam packed with galaxies. Since it currently takes us 1.8 billion years to travel 100 million light years, we need a whole lot more tech to get anywhere.

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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensi

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Image

Image of back side of the Moon taken by the DISCOVR spacecraft from about 1 million miles from Earth. The Sun is behind the craft in this picture to the "dark side" of the moon is illuminated. Not many features on the back side of the Moon.

Cool picture.

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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensi

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THE ANDROMEDA galaxy (or M31 as NASA scientists call it) is 2.5 million light-years away and contains one trillion stars, but these figures did not prevent NASA Hubble Space Telescope to capture a section of it in the largest composite image ever taken.

The 1.5 billion pixel picture is actually made of 411 images (taken over 3 years) that sweep over 100 millions stars and manage to focus on individual ones in the same way as one would focus on one grain of sand when taking a picture of a beach, NASA explains. Yes, that’s one powerful telescope.

If you don’t feel ridiculously small after watching this, remember that this is one part of one galaxy among the 100 billion galaxies contained in the universe. That should do it
1.5 billion pixel image of Andromeda Galaxy

Assloads of stars! There's plenty of other galaxies mixed in there with the gazillion stars.

As that video pans over the image, the number of stars is mind boggling and that's just a section of the Andromeda galaxy. Ever in awe when it comes to the scale of the known universe.

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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensi

Post by Gzette »

Wow. Surprised this board still exists. Not surprised that, if anyone, Winnow would be posting. Is Everquest still happening anywhere for y'all? I do feel nostalgic sometimes.
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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensi

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Gzette wrote:Wow. Surprised this board still exists. Not surprised that, if anyone, Winnow would be posting. Is Everquest still happening anywhere for y'all? I do feel nostalgic sometimes.
Hi!

Not sure who all is EQing anymore but I'm sure the numbers are pretty low. Stragi mentioined he was a couple months ago then disappeared forever!

You could always reinstall it and take a look around. It's (sorta) free! It might be a sad experience to see all those empty zones though.
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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensi

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Image
A really starry sky seems vast -- but all we're looking at is our very local neighborhood. On the very best nights, we can see up to about 2,500 stars (roughly one hundred-millionth of the stars in our galaxy), and almost all of them are less than 1,000 light years away from us (or 1 percent of the diameter of the Milky Way)
Here's something interesting to ponder when thinking about the size of the universe.

less than 100 years ago, the universe was thought to be the size of the Milky Way. Today the known universe estimate is 100 BILLION galaxies. The size of the known universe has increased 100 billion times in 100 years.
Another person who believed that they had discovered another galaxy comparable to the Milky Way was Milton Humason. He was employed as a janitor at the Mount Wilson observatory but had been taught to operate the telescopes. In the winter of 1920-21 Shapley had asked him to take photographs of the Andromeda Nebula with the 100-inch telescope at Mount Wilson which had been in operation for about 2 years. Humason thought that the photographs had just resolved the Andromeda Nebula into individual stars but when he pointed this out to Shapley he was told not to be silly! Shapley had staked his reputation on the belief that the Milky Way comprised the whole universe and he wasn't going to change his mind because of evidence coming from a former janitor who had just been promoted onto the scientific staff.
Amazing times. Another nice idea of scale keeping in mind 100 years ago the Milky Way was the entire known universe:

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... PEG%29.jpg

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Re: Mind Boggling Scale of the known universe (image intensi

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Mind blowing size is mind blowing. Mind blown.

So above I mentioned 100 Billion Galaxies known universe...and now this:
(CNN)Turns out we were wrong; there aren't 200 billion galaxies in the universe.
It's more like 2 trillion.

Yes, TRILLION!

That's the latest from NASA, which announced Thursday the number of galaxies in our observable universe is 10 times higher than previously projected.
This revelation was possible, thanks to that font of discovery -- the Hubble Space Telescope.
Astronomers have been trying to figure out the number of galaxies for decades.
In the mid-1990s, they arrived at the 200 billion figure (again, thank you Hubble.)
We aren't even remotely close to having accurate numbers. That's in the "observable" universe. When you look at the tiny pin point of the Milky Way of stars that we see with the naked eye from Earth in the previous message, it's amazing how far we've come in a short time.
"It boggles the mind that over 90 percent of the galaxies in the universe have yet to be studied," Conselice said.
There's good news: There's a bigger, badder telescope in the works. The James Webb Space Telescope will be able to peer back to the dawn of time. It should be ready by the end of the year.
So now, if the average galaxy size is roughly 100 Billion Stars with 2 Trillion Galaxies you have 100,000,000,000 x 2,000,000,000,000 stars.

The big question is what lies beyond the event horizon? Are we in just one of trillions of universes as well? There's no reason to think that this universe stands alone in a void of blackness.

Highly recommend watching this 3 min video of just a section of a single galaxy near our own:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=udAL48P5NJU

As you watch that, think of the light years just to get between two of those stars that are beside each other and how densely the stars are and then even moreso toward the center of the galaxy.

Besides being in awe of it all, I'm not sure what to make of it. Each of our lives is such a short blip of less then 100 years and even less of that time are we able to think deeply about such things. Natural instincts keep our race reproducing. Our stretch goal as humans at this point is to colonize another planet to reduce our chances of extinction.

On the grand scale of things, if we do manage to colonize other stars and eventually the galaxy and beyond, the time frame it takes will most likely evolve us beyond recognition.

I'd guess most people laugh at the recent articles where some billionaires and scientists say there is 20-50% chance we're living in a simulation. While I have no reason to think that theory is any more valid than other theories about our existence, I can easily imagine that it has just as good a chance as any other theory of being true.

Look at the way virtual reality is already progressing. 5-10 years from now, you're not going to want to leave it once the resolution and wireless solutions make it close enough to reality that you're living quarters won't matter to you anymore. A small apartment with next to no furniture will be enough.

Your mind is the ONLY valuable thing you possess. Ultimately your body means nothing. I eventually see humans evolving to the point where our minds (brain or whatever) are stored in data banks and we won't care. You'll probably live forever, feel no real pain, and spend your time exploring whatever it is you want to. Most likely sexual urges will be gone. That's a leftover animal instinct that really isn't needed if we eventually can preserve our minds indefinitely.

Unfortunately, I think we will all die within the current 100 year lifespan +/- a few years but those being born post 2000 will have a shot at living much longer due to medical breakthroughs. If you take the last 30 years of advancements in technology and factor in the ever increasing speed at which advancements are made, in 30 more years, our world would be mind boggling to us if we were to time travel there without experiencing the next 30 years in between.

I think about a lot of things. Ultimately though, I end up having no answer to two things:

1. No matter how big or how far back you go when trying to discover the origin of the cosmos, I can't get past the idea that you simply can't create something out of nothing. I'm ok with breaking down the entire cosmos to the smallest particles that we know about (quarks, energy strings, etc), but there will always be the question, "but what created that?" As I see it, the existence of the cosmos is impossible and yet, it exists.

2. Purpose in life. People have a bazllion answers to this one. There are two common reasons given. First one is, "I want to have kids so they can have kids, etc etc, (also legacy people that think it matters if they are remembered)". Second is, "I want to seek knowledge and learn/explore/discover" I'm firmly in the second main category. But no matter where you stand on this,...so what? You have a short life relatively speaking, and then you die.

All purpose is meaningless really. Say your goal is to do your part to help humans become masters of the known universe and it eventually happens thousands or millions of years from now...so what and what then? What does it matter? There are millions of species on this planet. What is their purpose? Primarily it's to be part of "the cycle of life" in the ecosystem. Humans may be the first (on Earth at least) to break out of this cycle but...so what? Think of it this way. Say we end up destroying ourselves due to nuclear holocaust...so what, who cares on a cosmic scale...say we blow up our solar system...our galaxy...maybe some alien race out there cares at that point but...so what? It may be that we could be responsible for destroying our known universe...but again...so what...if it turns out there are just as many universe bubbles out there as there are galaxies...so what? It's a blip on the incomprehensibly large scale of everything. The point is, I can't imagine anything really mattering at all. Any idea purpose you think you have I would argue is to maintain your sanity in an impossible existence.

I think to myself sometimes that what if I lived 1000 years in the future and humans had survived extinction and encountered other alien races, developed time travel, and can live forever...so what? I'd still have the same two issues...our existence is impossible and what is my/our purpose? The only difference would be that I could ponder these things forever instead of for a handful of years before I die.

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