Red Headed Stepchild
(The Barrett family memoir of Navy Life)
by Sophie Ruth Meranski with photos


p 94-1414
Forks High boys Basketball team 2000 Southwest Washington League champs ASTRONOMY O6 lambda cephei --B 3 Eta Aurigae -- A0 Delta CYGNI G2 Eta PEGASI Rigel B8 Ia 12,000 k -7 magnitude .01 g/cc. CANOPUS F supergiant distance?? 600-1152 ly. 10,500 s.lum? ETA CARINAE -11 magnitude million s. lum. - CRAB neb TAURUS 3500 ly-- Hyades receding toward Betelgeuse.-- T PYXIDIS or Nova PYXIDIS 1920 9h2.6' -32,11' type O ---April 22 Astronomy Professor David Latham has suggested that it will take a great deal of energy to achieve the ideal maximum amount of mass removal from the sun to keep the earth habitable as long as possible. However the time frame is very long. The basic equation is mv squared or m DELTA v squared, where m is the desired amount of mass removed, and Delta V is the difference between starting velocity and escape velocity. I believe that "m" the ideal amount of mass to remove over four or five billion years is not precisely known at present. The optimum rate of removal is likely to be a curve rather than a straight line. Too rapid a beginning might trigger an ice age or orbital instability of earth and planets. The longest-lived stars have 7.5 to eight per cent of the mass of the sun and are estimated to remain on Main Sequence with stable heat output about five thousand trillion years - [5 x 10 to twelfth power]. In atlas of the Universe 1998 I see as estimate that sun equals 333,000 earth masses. Suppose that in four billion years, it was desired to remove eighty per cent of present solar mass - this is very likely more than enough, but illustrates the nature of the calculation. This would mean if one proceeded in a linear fashion, that one per cent of solar mass should be eliminated in the first fifty million years, dividing four billion by eighty. So 3,330 earth masses would be removed in fifty million years, or 66.6 earth masses per one million years - around one earth mass every fifteen thousand years. The acceleration would be complex. I have heard the escape velocity at the surface of the sun estimated between 384 miles per second and 500 kilometers per second. However, the heat of the solar surface 5500 C and the much higher heat and convective motion just below the surface may contribute significantly to the starting energy as we come to understand how the existing solar wind forms and the stellar winds of other stars, including those hotter than the sun. For seven years I have been studying whether it would be possible to remove ANY mass from the sun. I call this stage "Leah" after the older first wife of the Biblical patriarch Jacob. Before we get to phase Leah, where we might experimentally try to remove a small amount of mass from the sun to observe technology, there would be phase "Blaise Pascal" where we would do thought experiments and test ideas theoretically. If the technology appeared risky, there might be a phase Alpha where we might test procedures on the star Alpha Centauri before working on the sun. As a target, perhaps an experimental small operation to remove a little mass from the sun might be targeted for the year 2099, within the lifetime of persons now living. David Latham has proposed the much more difficult and long -lasting PHASE RACHEL, in which the goal would be to achieve an optimum amount of gas removal to prolong habitability of earth to a theoretical maximum. Rachel was very beautiful, but her father was a demanding gentleman, and Jacob needed great patience and persistence. Since April 7, 2000 a number of possible technologies have come to mind, but they will require huge amounts of energy.Most of the technologies involve heating the solar surface to increase the amount of mass that escapes in the solar wind. At present it has been estimated about one hundred trillionth of solar mass escapes each year in naturally occurring solar wind. Hopefully, the sun's own energy can be utilized in one way or another.It is conceivable that over thousands and millions of years ways can be found to store energy from giant objects deep in space, and then beam or transport it Most technologies involve application of some form of heat to the solar surface. There may also be the possibilty of disrupting the surface chromosphere and exposing slightly deeper layers which are much hotter. In the order I have thought of them, these are techniques for warming the solar surface- locally or around the entire surface. [1] Lasers - possibly utilizing hydrogen from the sun itself for fusion power. [2] Reflectors or mirrors to aim the sun's own heat back at the surface. [3} A greenhouse gas - if one can be maintained stably in the lower corona, this would be the ultimate mirror or reflector. Extremely high million-degree C. temperatures occur in portions of the lower corona, and the forces that cause them are not completed known- very likely magnetism is involved. This strategy would take mass relatively uniformly from all areas of the surface. It would be desirable to remove mass from the polar regions of the sun, so that it would travel away from the orbit of the earth and other planets. [4] Disruption of the cooler chromosphere to expose hotter interior gas or plasma. [5] ANTI-MATTER- would be extremely effective annihiliating some of the sun's mass and generating astonishing heat if ANTIMATTER can be found, manufactured and handled and contained, as by very strong magnetic fields. There might be advantages in concentrating ther ANTIMATTER at very low temperatures near absolute zero possibly utilizing superconductivity to assist handling, which is far in the future [but Rachel is very beautiful].[6] collect energy from hot distant sources such as black holes, neutron stars, supernovas, giant stars and beam it to solar system [7] find nearby BROWN dwarfs believed to exist within a few light years of earth and utilize their hydrogen or intragalactic clouds for FUSION. The sun is presently about seventy-one per cent hydrogen, twenty-seven per cent helium, and two per cent heavier elements. The removal of helium probably would favor stability, but the helium tends to be concentrated near the core, as David Latham pointed out in 1995. Recently Sean Root of Port Angeles heard a broadcast on a TV history channel in which something was said about "helium bubbles" obrserved in sunspots. if this is true and if they can be targeted, a substantial amount of helium over a long time can be removed from the convective outer zone, which constitutes thirty per cent of solar radius and sixty-five per cent of volume. Doug Wadsworth of Port Angeles and Western Washington University at Bellinghan points out that if it is possible to reduce solar mass signifiantly, orbits of planets will be affected by reduced gravitational pull, and planets will move further from the sun. This will help delay or prevent over-heating the earth and may be of great long run importance. Effects on earth and future colonies on satellites of outer planets need careful calclulation [phase Blaise Pascal thought experiments].It appears likely a time will come when much of the world's population will move to satellites of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune. Mars is very small. Colonies can be sent to distant space, but moving all person and animals and plants is much more difficult, but relevant to democratic planning and popular will. Someday it will be possible, but it is important to gain time by keeping earth habitable as long as possible. Thanks to David Latham, Philip Brown of,Peter latham, Bohdan Paczynski, Gibor Basri for comments on various astrophysical topics, including halo and dark matter.
Year: 2000