Sunday, May 26, 2013

Need a map?

Mix in a little hydrogen, helium and dark matter, let it bake for about 8 billion years until little clumps of self-sustaining galaxies appear.

The "stirring" of a galaxy happens a lot faster and is more streamlined than we ever thought. Instead of necessary "fuel gases" drifting in loose currents to the center of the galaxy as we originally thought, taking 8 billion years give or take a million, those gases speed through filament "rivers", reaching the center in only a billion years.

This explains the fast spin of galaxies, which scientists couldn't previously understand.

Now, why am I sharing this with you? Well, it stemmed from my interest in intergalactic travel and the recent Russian earthquake.

Huh, you ask?

I know on the surface the two don't really pair up, but hang in there, I'm getting to the point. Ride the AR thought process with me.

GPS systems went haywire after Russia's 8.2 earthquake. Sent the world trembling with aftershocks all over this hunk of rock we call home.

Then, this morning I read an article about the newly discovered way galaxies are formed and sustain. Click HERE to read it.

The article was exciting in regards to my opening thought above, but it caused a side thought. Particularly the section that read: "Researchers didn't understand how the outer material could be spinning so fast."

Now, I know I've already covered the obstacles to space travel before, but another insurmountable and disappointing truth hit me. At least undefeatable in my lifetime.

If we are to go intergalactic with our travels, we'll have to master the whole spacetime manipulation thing. I mean, fusion and proton travel methods just aren't going to cut it for intergalactic. Maybe for interstellar, but even that's a serious commitment. At the rate the universe is expanding, and the growing distance between galaxies, we'll never get there.

But, if we master the whole Einstein move and pinch spacetime to accommodate our natural thirst to conquer all known things and places, we'll need a universal GPS system.

WARNING: AR veer-off moment hitting about now...I could name it UPS for Universal Positioning System but then I wouldn't be able to type it without giggling. I mean, I'm sure if we ever get that advanced UPS will be a primary user of the universal GPS system and all, but still, a bit ego-ish to name it after them, right?

But with the rate of expansion between us, and the rate of spin for galaxies, how can we ever manage to maintain a positioning system of that scale. I mean, one Russian earthquake managed to disrupt our measly planetary system.

How will we ever keep up?

If we can't get the spacetime worked out and an efficient, manageable positioning system developed we'll never leave this solar system, let alone the galaxy.

Okay, AR, don't panic. (Like the Hitchhikers reference there?)

We just need to be patient. Every day science is breaking what it knew and learning brand new things all together. No, it won't happen in my lifetime, but maybe in one of my next lifetimes.

Patience, AR, patience.


  1. I like the "AR thought process." It takes me to the most interesting places when I ride along :-)

    1. LOL, thanks Allie. I'm glad you like the posts. Yours are always so interesting it means a lot.

  2. Great blog, AR, and you raise a great point.

    We aren't going to be exploring outside our solar system until we develop a reliable navigation/positioning system. Since nothing stays in one place like it does in land or sea navigation it becomes a bit more complex to determine your location in the maelstrom of whirling suns and systems. What would we use for reference? Maybe the galactic center?

    This wouldn't work for intergalactic travel of course, but I think for the most part, forgetaboutit! I don't see that happening in 1,000 lifetimes, and maybe not even in the lifetime of our species. But it's really not a problem. There's PLENTY to discover right here in the Milky Way with its mind-boggling mysteries, potentially millions of Goldilocks planets and the vastness of interstellar space between them. What possible reason could we have for traveling to another, incomprehensibly distant galaxy? maybe we can just keep calling it GPS--for Galactic Positioning System, since we won't need a system for traveling outside the galaxy for quite some time. Like...never. :)

    1. Oh, man (or -- er - chickie) don't say that! I'm one of those geekies that feels the world is not enough, the solar system is not enough... and the galaxy is not enough. I want to see it all.

      Sigh, but you're probably right and I need to be okay with that. There ARE lots of things to still discover in Milky Way.

      I think GPS (Galactic) is a good title since we're not heading out beyon our own. And I agree with the center of the galaxy for reference, since that is the only real "stationary" point. I just hope the galaxy's movement within the univers, though, won't through it off. I used that concept in Duty and Devotion.