SETI RE: [ASTRO] Trouble Brewing In Eta Carinae

Larry Klaes (
Mon, 07 Jun 1999 21:10:59 -0400

>X-Authentication-Warning: majordom set sender to owner-astro using -f >X-Sender: >X-Mailer: QUALCOMM Windows Eudora Pro Version 3.0.3 (32) >Date: Mon, 07 Jun 1999 13:53:45 -0700 >To: ASTRO@LISTS.MINDSPRING.COM >From: Ron Ebert <> >Subject: RE: [ASTRO] Trouble Brewing In Eta Carinae >Sender: >Reply-To: Ron Ebert <> > >At 02:49 AM 6/5/99 -0500, Paul M. Rybski wrote: > >>Can anyone give us a scenario of what would happen to the earth if Eta >>Carina went "boom"? Would we all wake up one morning and find ourselves >>dead? Would the ozone layer be destroyed? Would any gamma irradiation be >>sudden - minutes or seconds - or would it extend over several days? Would >>the damage be much less if the "blast" occurs as a pair of jets (neither >>pointed directly at us) rather than a spherically symmetric explosion >>(since we really don't know the geometry of gamma ray bursters)? > >Nothing would happen to the earth if Eta Carina went "boom". It's too far >away to bother us in any significant way. Some calculations of the effects >of nearby supernova were worked out by Ellis and Schramm in their paper, >"Could a nearby supernova explosion have caused a mass extinction?" in the >Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States, v92, >n.1 (Jan 3, 1995):235. From their paper, they estimate that the penetrating >flux of neutral radiation (mostly gamma rays) and cosmic rays is given by: > >10^-(D/7pc)^2 x 300*(D/10pc)^2, where D is the distance in parsecs. D for >Eta Carina is 2300 parsecs, so the first term is so small the increase is >as close to zero as never mind. > > >Ron Ebert > >######################## > >"Science is best defined as a careful, disciplined, logical search for >knowledge about any and all aspects of the universe, obtained by >examination of the best available evidence and always subject to >correction and improvement upon discovery of better evidence. What's >left is magic. And it doesn't work." > -- James Randi > >

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