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Origin of Cosmic Rays Confirmed

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the just-as-we-suspected dept.

Space 155

cats-paw writes in with news of research that seems to confirm and support current theories of how cosmic rays are created. The prevailing thinking has been that cosmic rays are generated in the regions where supernovas' shock waves interact with the interstellar medium. The new research used the variability in X-ray emissions from a supernova remnant to estimate the strength of the magnetic fields present in that environment. The results lend support to the possibility of protons and nucleii being accelerated in supernova remnants to energies of 1 PeV (10^15 eV) and beyond. Here is the abstract from Nature.

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155 comments

Synopsis (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21150951)

The Cosmos

Good! (1)

spineboy (22918) | more than 6 years ago | (#21153721)

Now I can sleep at night.

Nature is wrong on this one. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21150955)

Cosmic rays are formed when two niggers kiss. Their giant lips create shock waves, and voila.

Mod me down if you agree.

Re:Nature is wrong on this one. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21152587)

... So what the rest of the world calls "incest", white supremists call "love at first sight'.

My favourite quote about rays: (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21150963)

"Ray Charles is a blind, ignorant, nigger" - Elvis Costello

Fact!

d'oh (4, Funny)

User 956 (568564) | more than 5 years ago | (#21150977)

research that seems to confirm and support current theories of how cosmic rays are created.

Oh, great, now that everyone knows how to make them, the Fantastic Four are going to be up to their eyeballs in supervillainry.

Re:d'oh (1)

Mister Kay (1119377) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152609)

I for one welcome a world of super heroes and villains. Though this will probably hurt that Marvel MMO that's coming out and city of heroes/villains.

When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (3, Funny)

nexuspal (720736) | more than 5 years ago | (#21150985)

It comes back with .00160217 joules. Isn't this a very small amount of energy, or am I missing something?

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (5, Informative)

the_brobdingnagian (917699) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151005)

Not if that's the energy of a single proton.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (5, Informative)

Bonker (243350) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151183)

For Comparison [wikipedia.org]

* 3.2×1011 joule or 200 MeV - total energy released in nuclear fission of one U-235 atom (on average; depends on the precise break up)
* 3.5×1011 joule or 210 MeV - total energy released in fission of one Pu-239 atom (also on average)


So, imagine the energy level to be 8-9 ORDERS OF MAGNITUDE (or around a billion times) more energetic than a nuclear fission chain reaction.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (3, Informative)

geekboy642 (799087) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151355)

Those numbers are 3.2x10^-11 and 3.5x10^-11 respectively. Formatting is a bitch. Guess that's why they invented "Preview", eh Paco?

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

asifyoucare (302582) | more than 6 years ago | (#21153897)

eh Paco?

I thought they killed Paco.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

Dark_MadMax666 (907288) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152263)

So, imagine the energy level to be 8-9 ORDERS OF MAGNITUDE (or around a billion times) more energetic than a nuclear fission chain reaction
Damn that is awesome! When we can start making all new, more powerful bombs out of this ?!?! Somebody tell the military quick so we do not get cosmic ray gap!

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (4, Informative)

Bonker (243350) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152621)

While the above poster is obviously in jest, it's worth pointing out the difficulties with his suggestion.

The only way we currently have of energizing protons to even a measurable fraction of energy like this is in particle accelerators. They're spun around in magnetic fields to faster and faster speeds, gaining mass and energy or energy as they go. That energy ultimately comes from some kind of generator and the fuel it uses.

Eventually, they're slammed into a stationary target or a particle going the other way in the same accelerator. The more mass and energy the particles have accumulated, the more exotic the reactions that occur when that happens. The point of the experiment is to funnel a massive amount of fuel energy into one spot and see what happens when it goes 'boom'.

The super-energetic cosmic rays use the magnetic shockwave created by a Supernova to achieve about the same effect. Rather than being spun around a particle accelerator, they're being spun around the coiled loops of magnetic flux created when a super-massive star decides to disembowel itself.

So, to get anywhere near the ability to create one of these, let alone some kind of ray weapon utilizing them, we'd need a particle accelerator larger than the Sun (or able to churn out more energy than the Sun does). By the time we were able to build one, we'd be dismantling planets by other means anyway.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

Kagura (843695) | more than 6 years ago | (#21153117)

So, imagine the energy level to be 8-9 ORDERS OF MAGNITUDE (or around a billion times) more energetic than a nuclear fission chain reaction.

Also, try to imagine all life as you know it stopping instantaneously and every molecule in your body exploding at the speed of light.

Woah.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

brouski (827510) | more than 6 years ago | (#21153391)

OK, that sounds bad.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

Waffle Iron (339739) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151327)

That is a lot of energy for one proton, but not compared to the highest energy cosmic rays that have been observed. Those pack almost 10^21 eV (about the energy of a pitched baseball) into a single particle.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (4, Informative)

MoxFulder (159829) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152235)

Indeed. The wikipedia article on ultra-high-energy cosmic rays [wikipedia.org] has more info. The energy of such a particle is simply insane...

Some of them apparently violate a theoretical limit on the energy of a particle that has traveled a long way across the universe... leading to the question of where exactly they come from.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21151033)

You need to use scientific notation instead.

1 electron volts = 1.60217646 × E-19 joules

so

1E15 electron volts = 1.60217646 × E-4 joules

It's an order of magnitude smaller still. Good news is, NASA will hire you! ;-)

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

nexuspal (720736) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151047)

ohh no, I punched in 10 000000000000000 (fifteen zeroes without the space) eV to joules and it came back with that answer.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (5, Informative)

nukeade (583009) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151077)

It is, but it's all in one tiny particle (often a relativistic nucleus with all of its electrons stripped away). The energy density, then, is truly outrageous.

~Ben

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (2, Interesting)

viking80 (697716) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151607)

Multiply that with Avogadro's number, and you get the energy of a regular bullet with 'cosmic ray' speed:
6x10^20 J. That, amazingly, equals the total enery production on earth in one year. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_energy_resources_and_consumption [wikipedia.org]

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

Kingrames (858416) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152413)

So that means with this technology, we can make a gun that we fire once a year to keep the earth fully powered?
Awesome.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (4, Funny)

British (51765) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152779)

But it would take a year to charge the gun. Kinda cancels itself out.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (5, Informative)

Omnifarious (11933) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151683)

So, it takes 4.1868 joules to heat one cubic centimeter of water (one gram of water) one degree centigrade. So 0.00160217 joules is enough to heat one gram of water 383 microdegrees.

So, yes, in one sense that's not very much energy.

But, if you're going to scale the mass up, you should scale the energy up. So, it's one proton that has that much energy. The gram of water has approximately 6.02*10^23 proton masses. If every proton mass in the gram of water had that much energy, it would be equivalent to that gram of water being heated by 2.3*10^20 degrees. This is 230 trillion trillion degrees (yes, that's two trillions).

I hope this gives you a sense of the scale involved here.

When you have a single proton with enough energy to make a measurable difference in the temperature of a gram of water, you are talking an amazingly huge amount of energy.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21153089)

Yeah, but how many libraries of congress does it take to heat one cubic centimeter of water?

Try it, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

PPH (736903) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151699)

That's the energy per particle (proton). Its quite a bit for such an itsy-bitsy (sorry for the technical jargon) thing.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21151745)

"or am I missing something?"


Oh, just a high-school education.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151805)

It comes back with .00160217 joules. Isn't this a very small amount of energy, or am I missing something?
And it's in a proton about .0000000000000000000000000000000000000000000007m^3 big.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

cgraeff (1098129) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151867)

13.6 eV is the ground state energy of hydrogen. With that energy you can split a hydrogen atom in a proton plus an electron. 10^15 eV in atomic scale is indeed a lot of energy.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151903)

If you had a kilo of that stuff, it'd be enough to power the world's energy consumption for the next 200 years. I think that's as close as you get to a layman's understanding of how much power that is.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

cheater512 (783349) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152971)

We are talking about photons so it may be just a little bit more than 200 years.

Re:When I punch 10^15 eV into Google... (1)

khallow (566160) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152361)

BTW, the current record [wikipedia.org] for a cosmic ray (most likely a single proton) was estimated to have the kinetic energy of a thrown baseball. But it weighed 26 orders of magnitude less (assuming it was a proton).

[OT] Nitpicking summary (4, Insightful)

noidentity (188756) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151001)

[...] news of research that seems to confirm and support current theories of how cosmic rays are created. [...] The results lend support to the possibility of protons and nucleii being accelerated in supernova remnants to energies of 1 PeV (10^15 eV) and beyond. Here is the abstract from Nature.

So this research confirms... supports...well lends support to the possibility. Care to soften it further?

Re:[OT] Nitpicking summary (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21151157)

The wording in the summary is a good representation of the article. The work confirms the origins of cosmic rays in supernova remnants and lend support to the idea that they can reach energies of 1 PeV, which is energy in excess of what has been theorized as being possible. In other words, a new upper limit. They are two separate and accurate statements.

Re:[OT] Nitpicking summary (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151203)

OK, I'm busted. Apologies.

Re:[OT] Nitpicking summary (1)

fritsd (924429) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151587)

Why is there an upper limit to how fast you can accelerate a proton? I mean in energy, as it approaches c, does something bad happen as it reaches that threshold? Relativistics was never my forte.

Re:[OT] Nitpicking summary (2, Interesting)

ResidntGeek (772730) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151639)

I believe it's an upper limit to how fast this particular mechanism can accelerate a proton, not how fast a proton can be accelerated under any circumstances.

Re:[OT] Nitpicking summary (1, Interesting)

pln2bz (449850) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151839)

The study cannot absolutely confirm the origin of cosmic rays unless it considers all possible cosmological theories. It would perhaps be more accurate to say that within conventional stellar theory, supernovae can account for the high energies necessary. But within other stellar models -- like in plasma-oriented cosmologies -- it is not so difficult to achieve the necessary energy levels.

For instance, a relatively low density plasma can support a weak electric field. Consistent with this, a low amplitude (positive) electric field can extend from the Sun's corona. This would result from the Sun being at a higher voltage level than is distant space beyond the heliopause. One can make a good case that the outward force on positive ions due to this electric field causes the observed acceleration of +ions in the solar wind.

It's interesting that astrophysicists would propose that supernovae are the only mechanism for accelerating cosmic rays when they have yet to establish a believable mechanism within their own models for how the solar wind continues to be accelerated even as it passes the planets. The notion that cosmic rays are in fact the solar winds of other larger stars, whose electric fields would dwarf our own Sun's electric field, is only dismissed because it is irrelevant to the popular models. But by not considering such possibilities within a fair framework of alternative cosmologies, the mainstream astrophysicists fail to take advantage of an opportunity to rigorously compare and contrast the various stellar models. What we get instead is a consideration of only a limited set of possibilities to begin with based upon a dramatic assumption that the current stellar theories are without fault. This constrained set of possibilities improves our understanding of the popular theories, but it would be false to assert that this selective consideration of possibilities is rigorous.

I'd love to hear why I might be wrong on this.

Re:[OT] Nitpicking summary (2, Interesting)

Scott Carnahan (587472) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152499)

Can you propose a mechanism for star formation that would give the sun a sufficiently large positive charge to accelerate ions at large distances? That voltage difference had to come from somewhere, and large charge imbalances counteract the gravitational attraction needed for nuclear fusion.

Maybe I'm wasting my time. It seems clear that "alternative cosmologies" means the electric universe theory, which doesn't make any useful, testable predictions.

Re:[OT] Nitpicking summary (1)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152515)

As long as we're just opening it up to everything, I'd like to propose that Zeus is the cause, because he likes to fuck with us.

Re:[OT] Nitpicking summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21152733)

the article points out *a* possible source for cosmic rays within a certain energy range. I don't think these scientists are attempting to explain all cosmic rays, as they come in a variety of compositions, arrival directions and energy levels. There is a spectrum of cosmic rays and this might be one explanation for a region of the spectrum from one arrival location.

For further research, look up "GZK cutoff" and some of the theories of Enrico Fermi (who proposed charged particles could gain energy by interacting with magnetic fields in space).

Re:[OT] Nitpicking summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21152189)

This is space science. The collective wisdom changes more often than if eggs or red wines are actually healthy for you. The kicker is, Food and The Universe already "are" something, we just haven't figured it out or agreed about it yet. Discovery is 70% debate.

Cosmic Rays Come Out Of My Ass (-1, Troll)

C. A. McClellan (1070014) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151003)

Everyone knows that cosmic rays come out of my big fat ass.

According to the creation museum in Kansas (5, Funny)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151071)

they are created when God puts foil in his microwave :P

Re:According to the creation museum in Kansas (1)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151353)

You joke -- obviously God doesn't need a microwave when he can simply will his food to be cooked -- but in all seriousness, they come from his X-Ray vision.

Re:According to the creation museum in Kansas (1)

tshetter (854143) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151667)

Yea, but that can get boring.

Everyone loves a good RPG from time to time.

The big guy might like living like a college kid, drinking beer, partying.

Then at night, boom, hes a super hero fighting crime, getting wimmins.

Fluffy clouds and angels might get old after a bit, ya know?

Re:According to the creation museum in Kansas (1)

rucs_hack (784150) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151727)

You joke -- obviously God doesn't need a microwave when he can simply will his food to be cooked -- but in all seriousness, they come from his X-Ray vision.

Well that's almost true. Actually he sub contracts the job to Chuck Norris.

Bah! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21152569)

God is subcontracted to Chuck Norris!

Re:According to the creation museum in Kansas (1)

MarsDefenseMinister (738128) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152913)

What does God need with a cheeseburger?

Re:According to the creation museum in Kansas (1)

scoot80 (1017822) | more than 6 years ago | (#21153881)

cheese?

Re:According to the creation museum in Kansas (1)

ArikTheRed (865776) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151695)

Not the be a stickler, but the creation museum is in Kentucky. Kansas is the state with the retarded schoolboard.

Re:According to the creation museum in Kansas (1)

CompMD (522020) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151845)

Not to be a sticker, but Kansas *was* the state with the retarded school board. We voted out those idiots.

a good science post? (4, Insightful)

Goldsmith (561202) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151143)

Give credit to cats-paw for giving us the link to the abstract for the original paper and to the editors for putting this up rather than a link to some half-baked pseudo-science blog about it.

I think if I was not an experimentalist, I would want to study this area of physics (supernova observation). Going through the steps of a supernova exposes you to some of the most amazing physics we know of, and this research only adds to that.

Re:a good science post? (4, Funny)

Icarus1919 (802533) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151247)

I'm sorry, but I refuse to read science news unless it's been submitted by Roland.

Re:a good science post? (1)

MollyB (162595) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151321)

Going through the steps of a supernova exposes you to some of the most amazing physics we know of, [...]
Yeah, blink and you've missed it...

It's Roland's day off. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21151527)

Tune in tomorrow to see articles split into individual paragraphs across thirty nine Ad-laden pages.

Sorry for any inconvenience caused.

yes but.. (1)

sponga (739683) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151147)

have they figured out how they get those small model ships in those glass bottles?

nuclei, NOT nucleii (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21151149)

Stop trying to sound "smart" by ending words with "ii". To make Latin words ending "us" plural, remove the "us" and add ONLY ONE "i".

"nucleus" -> "nuclei"

"radius" -> "radii" (because there's already an "i" before the "us")

Re:nuclei, NOT nucleii (2, Funny)

bazald (886779) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151853)

Stop trying to sound "smart" by ending words with "ii".
Isn't it more likely that it was a simple error?

Re:nuclei, NOT nucleii (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21153815)

Nope. Never attribute to incompetence what can be explained by douchebaggery.

Re:nuclei, NOT nucleii (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21152197)

EVERYONE knows it's nuculusses.

Re:nuclei, NOT nucleii (2, Funny)

ockegheim (808089) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152241)

"nucleus" -> "nuclei"

For George Bush it's "nuculi", though "nuculei" sounds cooler.

Re:nuclei, NOT nucleii (0, Offtopic)

ockegheim (808089) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152833)

A joke modded Offtopic... oh, the indignity!

Re:nuclei, NOT nucleii (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21153937)

It's "nuculeii", dumbass.

Re: (1)

LandruBek (792512) | more than 6 years ago | (#21153933)

nuclei, NOT nucleii

My roommate called me a WUS, so I said, "It takes one to know one!" Then we played a game of Bowling on our game console, the one with motion sensing . . . ach, what is it called???

nigger loving slashdot (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21151195)

Fact: Slashdot is a nigger loving worthless bastard that would pay good money to suck nigger cock.

Mod me down if you agree.

Re:nigger loving slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21152445)

you are definately retarded.... fuck you coward. mod me down if you agree

Summary incorrect... (1)

azuredrake (1069906) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151237)

The research doesn't confirm anything. In fact, no science does. It just shows that there's yet another phenomenon which does not demonstrate the prominent possibility to be incorrect. It seems a minor distinction, but it's important to science that science can't "prove" anything - only attempt to disprove by null hypothesis.

Re:Summary incorrect... (1)

nexuspal (720736) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151279)

So, by your words... We accept the null, and... :-p

Re:Summary incorrect... (3, Interesting)

grammar fascist (239789) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151705)

Yet again, another armchair commenter wants to clarify what Science Is. Summary says:

... seems to confirm and support current theories... The results lend support to the possibility of protons and nucleii being accelerated...

Additionally, the abstract says their research "provide[s] a strong argument" for a theory. I suppose these statements are way too hard-line for Real Science. Sheesh. These are people who know very well they're doing inference rather than deduction - including the submitter! - and you take them to task for jumping to conclusions.

You say:

... yet another phenomenon which does not demonstrate the prominent possibility to be incorrect. It seems a minor distinction, but it's important to science that science can't "prove" anything - only attempt to disprove by null hypothesis.

The hypothesize/predict/experiment cycle isn't nearly as boolean as you make it out, even though we teach it that way in school.

If a result doesn't disprove a theory, it actually increases its probability among other possibilities. Bayesian statistics models this quite well, and scientists think about it that way but without such a rigorous foundation. For example, in all forces, we've measured the differential relationships among position, velocity and acceleration to ridiculous precision. Doesn't this increase the probability that we've got it right? In this area, if there's a conflict between predicted and expected outcomes, we regard the explanation that the theory is wrong as the less probable one - much less probable.

Part of the problem is classical statistics. Null hypotheses and tests against them are kludgy nonsense, everyone knows it, and everyone has their own way of doing it "properly". (Think about it this way: Pr(null hypothesis), where the null hypothesis has a continuous component - and this is done all the time - is ZERO.) Doing inference without priors is a misguided attempt at objectivity. These mindsets are well-preserved in scientific philosophy, and they've got to go. Nobody actually thinks about real inference the classical way. It'd be ridiculous to try it on any hypothesis of moderate complexity.

God did it! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21151245)

God created everything from cosmic rays to herpes.

Welcome to Niggerdot (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21151263)

I declare this story to the first official nigger bashing story.

Future generations will regard this moment as the turning of the tide. They will say to each other "you know, on 28 October 2007, slashdotters realized that niggers flat-out stink. in fact, they smell like shit."

gay pride! (1)

Fruity McGayGay (1005769) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151287)

who likes buttsex?

slashdot likes the cosmic cock! (1)

Asshat_Nazi (946431) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151293)

they can't get enough of the nerd sucky-sucky.

slashdong strikes again (0, Troll)

Asshat_Nazi_v2.0 (989409) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151307)

a bunch of gay cock-lovin' nerds talking abour cosmic rays and man-love.

fucking faggots.

Very, very hot (1)

Lord Byron II (671689) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151345)

Converting from eV to fahrenheit gives that these interactions are taking place at: 6,446,700,000,000,000,000 degrees! That's 6.4 billion billion degrees.

Re:Very, very hot (3, Funny)

Annymouse Cowherd (1037080) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151637)

Thats almost 6,500,000,000,000,000,000 degrees!!!!

Re:Very, very hot (5, Funny)

White Flame (1074973) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151829)

6,446,700,000,000,000,000 degrees! That's 6.4 billion billion degrees.

But how many Libraries Of Congress On Fire is that?

Re:Very, very hot (1)

tshetter (854143) | more than 5 years ago | (#21152023)

Libraries of Congress (LoC) are an infinitly flexible unit of measure.

Because of this the LoC is also the most fundamental of all units.

The Planck units therefore must replaced!

Planck Libraries of Congress, PLoC!!


/oohhh, Supper is ready.....

Re:Very, very hot (1)

dwywit (1109409) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152771)

<Sagan>
Billions and billions..........
</Sagan>

Re:Very, very hot (2, Informative)

Tolkien (664315) | more than 6 years ago | (#21153401)

...Also known as 6 quintillion, 446 quadrillion, 700 trillion.

While we're at it, a million millions is one trillion.

No offense, but geez, call it what it is.

Roasting Times (3, Funny)

maz2331 (1104901) | more than 6 years ago | (#21153425)

So, if I need to cook a turkey, how long should I leave it in at 6,446,700,000,000,000,000 degrees?

i smell the smell (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21151397)

of niggers. and oh-boy, does it ever smell like dog shit.

Interesting... (1)

kitsunewarlock (971818) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151413)

Cosmic ray soaring over...
Scientists wish for its egg...
Does haiku mod up?

Re:Interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21151485)

Only if you get the right number of syllables ;)

Re:Interesting... (1)

scarboni888 (1122993) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151489)

haiku does mod up but your post is not haiku it's 5, 7, 5!

Re:Interesting... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#21151965)

No No No No No
No No No No No No No
No No No... Maybe

Ya Know..... (2, Funny)

IHC Navistar (967161) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151417)

I think "Cosmic Ray's" would be a great name for a futuristic bar. That, or the "Space Bar".

In Soviet Russia... (0, Troll)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151469)

In Soviet Russia, we discovered this 5 years ago!

Or perhaps ... (1)

PPH (736903) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151643)

... they are shrapnel from some distant intergalactic war.

Re:Or perhaps ... (1)

Mogster (459037) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152293)

maybe from the explosion of a large moonish looking space station in a galaxy far, far away?

Re:Or perhaps ... (2, Funny)

Austerity Empowers (669817) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152959)

that's no galaxy

Oh My God Particle (2, Interesting)

somepunk (720296) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151739)

First of all, the summary (but also the article) refer to "cosmic rays", as if they are all the same. Most, actually, come from the sun. The nature abstract talks about "galactic cosmic rays", which better, but there are thought to be many flavors of these as well, as there are many ways to accelerate charged partcles.

The poster child of uber-freaked out cosmic rays is a crazy bugger [wikipedia.org] detected in 1991 that had an energy of 3.2 x 10^20 eV. One scientist compared it to dropping a brick on your toe! Cosmic rays with this much energy are too enegetic to fit the supernova shock wave model nicely. They might come from gamma ray bursts or black holes on a feeding frenzy.

Re:Oh My God Particle (2, Informative)

hubie (108345) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152677)

Most, actually, come from the sun.

Maybe at 1AU, but out beyond the magnetosphere that isn't true.

For what it's worth, the many flavors of galactic cosmic rays you mention is pretty much the periodic table. While true there are a variety of ways to accelerate a charged particle, there are not that many known ways to get them to those energies that don't stick out like sore thumbs (which is why supernovae were always the best candidates). For the galactic cosmic rays, at least one of the methods must be able to accelerate very large nuclei such as silicon or iron, without blowing apart the nuclei while accelerating them.

The problem with the really really high energy cosmic rays is that when they travel at those speeds everything is blue-shifted up. The cosmic background radiation shifts up to x-rays and gamma rays and so these particles would interact like crazy with the background and thus should not be able to travel very far (like across the universe). So where the hell do they come from? If I knew, I'd have a nice tenured position somewhere.

Aunt Petunia's favorite nephew (1)

Trikenstein (571493) | more than 5 years ago | (#21151773)

Benjamin Jacob Grimm says "Wear your lead lined skivvies if your going into space, kids"

Olbers Anti-Paradox? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21152493)

The Olbers paradox [wikipedia.org] asks why the night sky is dark, and the answers usually invoke stars' finite lifetimes, the age and expansion of the universe. But if our eyes saw cosmic rays, would we think the sky is dark in the first place?

Huh? No, I just farted. (1)

throatmonster (147275) | more than 6 years ago | (#21152659)

That explains it all.

Latin plurals (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21153047)

Not all Latin words ending in "-us" have a "-i" plural. Fourth-declension masculine nouns ending in "-us" have "-us" as their plural (with a long mark over the "u", pronounced "oos" rather than "us").

Wow (1)

algoa456 (716417) | more than 6 years ago | (#21153505)

Who would have thought?
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