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X-ray Facility To Simulate Conditions At Earth's Core

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the i-think-hillary-swank-can-answer-your-questions dept.

Earth 37

Diggester sends this quote from an article at the BBC: "The ID24 beam line at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility will use X-ray beams to subject iron and other materials to extraordinary temperatures and pressures. How the X-rays are absorbed should give insight into the mysterious processes going on at and near the Earth's core. For example, the work could unravel why the Earth's magnetic field can 'flip.' ... The samples are compressed at a pressure millions of times higher than that on the Earth's surface. High-power lasers are then fired through the diamonds at the samples, heating them to higher than 10,000C. Then X-rays are used as a probe to determine the precise composition and chemistry of samples."

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Uh oh. (-1, Troll)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#38035218)

What could possibly go wrong? What about that black hole? First, the LHC now this. Those damned Europeans are going to kill us yet!

Re:Uh oh. (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38035336)

Slashdot has dumbed down, and it's partly your fault.

Re:Uh oh. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38035486)

Slashdot has dumbed down, and it's partly your fault.

I blame the morbidly obese for most other forms of stupidity. They can't even comprehend thermodynamics and the concept of not eating more calories than you burn. They're idiots who cannot even get ahold of their own lives and their own bodies. Then they make some childish excuse like blaming McDonalds for making their burgers too tasty or something. Then they campaign for "fat acceptance" because somehow changing the society around them is easier than changing their diet.

I have never met a fatty who was mentally healthy. They all have a victim complex. They all think everything wrong with them is the fault of anyone or anything but themselves and their shitty decision making. They're gluttons. They have huge parts of their life they don't know how to cope with and instead of growing a spine they eat a big greasy bucket of comfort food.

Most of all, those 300 pound tubs of lard you see waddling around? At one point they were only 10-20 pounds overweight. That would have been the time to examine their lifestyle and make any needed corrections. Now we have a whole nation of so-called adult people who cannot grasp such simple concepts. Great. Tell me something, all that food they overeat, how many starving people in poor third-world nations like Ethiopia would have appreciated it and put it to good use?

Re:Uh oh. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38035576)

:/ I thought that post was sarcastically funny.

Re:Uh oh. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38035676)

:/ I thought that post was sarcastically funny.

Me too, but it didn't kiss someone's ass enough so it got down-modded. Probably by the same people who want schools to hold soccer games where no scores are kept because defeat might mean someone's feelings get hurt.

Just like those idiot schools don't realize that the sting of defeat is a great motivator to cause someone to try harder and sharpen their skills, the idiot mods don't realize or appreciate that sometimes people really do say stupid things and the fault there is not with the person who recognizes it as stupid. Especially when it's some kind of black-hole end-of-the-world Chicken Little type of deal like this one was.

I mean shit, cosmic rays have more energy than any particle accelerator we've ever built -- if black holes were a real danger they should be happening all the time. If that guy took even 2 seconds to think about this before speaking he'd have never made that post. It was a stupid post. That's just a fact. Adult people who cannot handle facts are really pathetic.

Re:Uh oh. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38035476)

The government should invest in tin foil hat suppliers. By the looks of it, it would pay a dividend many times over.

Sourceforge top Downloads? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38035258)

Why is that spam box on the front page?


Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38035596)

These are very likely the same idiots who have put a hole in the magnetosphere. This technology is moronic and dangerous to the welfare of the planet and they should be stopped. I would stop them if I could.

James Bond film waiting to happen (3, Funny)

HiggsBison (678319) | more than 2 years ago | (#38035832)

Let's see... X-rays, check... diamonds, check... high-powered lasers, check...

Don't forget the... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38036790)

...giant molten ball of high pressure iron!

Bad summary (5, Informative)

Doctor Morbius (1183601) | more than 2 years ago | (#38036252)

The summary makes its seem like they're using the X-rays to do the heating and compressing when in reality the material is compressed in a diamond anvil cell. The X-rays are used to study how the material changes under heat and pressure. The original article makes the same mistake.

Re:Bad summary (1, Interesting)

stevelinton (4044) | more than 2 years ago | (#38036318)

The X-rays will certainly heat the sample very rapidly indeed, and thereby probably increase the pressure in the cell, at least briefly, so I don't think the article is all wrong. Probably better to think of the diamond anvil cell as a pre-pressurizing step.

Re:Bad summary (2)

BarryPye (2506922) | more than 2 years ago | (#38045478)

Only in science fiction, stevelinton. Doctor Morbius is correct. The power in the monochromatic X-ray beam at ID24 is less than a Watt. Only powerful enough to heat your imagination. All the pressure is provided by the diamond anvil cell. The experimental technique, X-ray diffraction, is used to characterize the crystal structure of a sample under carefully controlled conditions. This same type of high-pressure environmental science experiment is done at the Advanced Photon Source (USA) at beam lines 13ID and 16ID. Perhaps there are such instruments for this high-pressure environmental science research at the Diamond Light Source (UK) or some other X-ray synchrotron. The article announces the new instrument for this work at ID24 (inauguration day was 2011-11-10).

yellow stone erupts every magnetic field can 'flip (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38036594)

would a significant change in core temp cause a flip? what would cause the core to heat up? Electric Universe theory?

Re:yellow stone erupts every magnetic field can 'f (1)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | more than 2 years ago | (#38037088)

would a significant change in core temp cause a flip? what would cause the core to heat up?

Apparently, a regression in Linux's power management.

Re:yellow stone erupts every magnetic field can 'f (3, Informative)

mikael (484) | more than 2 years ago | (#38038242)

Core temperature is driven by pressure from the gravitational attraction of every atom on and around Earth. This causes enough heating to make the mantle to become liquid. The mantle itself is liquid sodium which conducts electricity. The core itself is mostly iron/nickel and is under such high pressure it remains a solid (Clausius Clapeyron relation [wikipedia.org]

  At the Earth's core, pressure is around 330 - 360 gigapascals [wikipedia.org] , 330 million times atmospheric pressure.
Deep Water accident was only 120,000 times atmospheric pressure. There isn't any danger of the core cooling down.

The effect of convection currents and the Earth's spin forces the liquid mantle to start rotating which in turn causes magnetic fields to form. This was the subject of a scientific experiment [inria.fr] .

The idea is that these individual rotating eddies can at times reinforce each other to form a strong dipole system as we have now, and at other times cancel out or form a weak multipole system, which would last until a new strong dipole system formed.

There are other theories that different layers of the Earth rotate at different speeds, having other electromagnetic effects on the Earth.

Blast from the past (1)

Torodung (31985) | more than 2 years ago | (#38037338)

Any bets that a Time Cube forms and starts tearing up Bibles?

Humans are wiser at birth than after fully educated – for they are taught negativistic anti-life ONEism that does not exist on opposite + & - pole Earth.

Everyone knows the magnetic shift is caused by TIME CUBE!

Seriously, we have no idea what's down there. Sounds like a fun experiment.

Re:Blast from the past (1)

davewoods (2450314) | more than 2 years ago | (#38051422)

:D Horray for a time cube reference! Honestly, I am disappointed that you did not post every line in a different size/font/color.

Let's find out what this iron block is made of... (0)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38040592)

...by firing a really expensive X-ray laser at it.

"OK, plasma spectrograph says it's iron. Fire up the Xaser." ...sometime later...

"OK. Xaser spectrometry says it's iron."

Nope. I really cannot see the point.

This is all nothing new (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38042130)

Diamond anvil cell experiments with syncrotron radiation to evaluate the contents have been around for decades. This is an example of journalistic telephone, where a press release from an institute PR office is amped up in each retelling. By the time it makes it to Slashdot, it's completely unrecognizable.

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