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Thread: Gravity

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    Supporting Member spot's Avatar
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    Gravity

    Somewhere I saw an article in which the relative strength of gravity and electromagnetism was compared rather vividly.

    Take two planets the size of Earth, it started. Strap each to the back of an electrically insulated volunteer. Place the volunteers nose to nose.

    Normally you'd expect the volunteers to be crushed as gravity draws the planets together.

    But, went the article, if you merely increase the number of electrons on each person by 10%, the system will be balanced and nothing will move.

    I suspect the volunteers would actually become uncomfortable, to be honest, but I thought it was a deeply satisfying demonstration of matched electrical charges repelling.
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    Premium Member Snowfire's Avatar
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    Re: Gravity

    Gravity is one of those strange phenomena that I cant get my head around. It seems counter intuitive to me.

    I'm not suggesting for a moment that I have the right to understand it. Scientists, after all, don't really understand gravitational forces, fully.

    That the gravitational influence of the moon from 250,000 miles away, can move the seas to bulge toward it but I can easily lift my foot up from the floor with ease, just blows my mind. That the sun can influence the life and capture a comet from billions of miles is astonishing. Some comets have orbits that last for hundreds, if not thousands of years, all being forever held in the suns clutches.
    "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire."
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    Supporting Member spot's Avatar
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    Re: Gravity

    The unit of mass which generates this gravitational attraction isn't a planet, it's each of the subatomic particles which makes up the planet. We've become used to averaging the effect of all those subatomic particles but it's each of them, one by one, which attracts. They attract their neighbours, and the other subatomic particles on the other side of the planet, and each of the subatomic particles in the neighbouring planets.

    What I find difficult is that a subatomic particle currently located in my fingernail is, even as I type, attracting another subatomic particle in one of the stars of the Andromeda galaxy.

    I find that difficult because it would seem even such an extremely small force is calculable, and so it's presumably measurable and real. We can see the effect of all these subatomic particles because the Andromeda Galaxy is consequently hurtling toward us faster [1] than a speeding bullet. All, without exaggeration, because of my fingernail and others like it acting over an admittedly longish time.





    [1]: 300 times faster, thinking about it.
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    When the flowers want to oxygen and nutrition, or you’re a wedding or party planner, I will help you too much.
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    Senior Member Bruv's Avatar
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    Re: Gravity

    Should I cut my fingernails again ?
    I thought I knew more than this until I opened my mouth

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    Premium Member Snowfire's Avatar
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    Re: Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruv View Post
    Should I cut my fingernails again ?
    If you don't, those collective atoms will accelerate Andromeda even further.

    Apparently, when the inevitable happens and Andromeda meets with the Milky Way and Mankind is still here, we will know very little about it. There is so much empty space between all the suns and solar systems, we will pass like ships in the night....but then the gravity will have a field day and swirl us about a bit more and the two galaxies may even separate again
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    Supporting Member ZAP's Avatar
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    Re: Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by spot View Post
    The unit of mass which generates this gravitational attraction isn't a planet, it's each of the subatomic particles which makes up the planet. We've become used to averaging the effect of all those subatomic particles but it's each of them, one by one, which attracts. They attract their neighbours, and the other subatomic particles on the other side of the planet, and each of the subatomic particles in the neighbouring planets.

    What I find difficult is that a subatomic particle currently located in my fingernail is, even as I type, attracting another subatomic particle in one of the stars of the Andromeda galaxy.

    I find that difficult because it would seem even such an extremely small force is calculable, and so it's presumably measurable and real. We can see the effect of all these subatomic particles because the Andromeda Galaxy is consequently hurtling toward us faster [1] than a speeding bullet. All, without exaggeration, because of my fingernail and others like it acting over an admittedly longish time.





    [1]: 300 times faster, thinking about it.
    I wish I could understand this better but when I try to concentrate, my mind flits off to Andromeda or other galaxies, wondering about what it's like there. But I certainly admire minds like yours Spot, that can state these things so concisely.

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    Supporting Member spot's Avatar
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    Re: Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by Snowfire View Post
    then the gravity will have a field day and swirl us about a bit more and the two galaxies may even separate again
    I've known women like that.
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    Who has a spare two minutes to play in this month's FG Trivia game!

    The watch of your vision has become reasonable today.

    It’s normal. You must provoke. You must insult the belief of all monotheists. You must make fun of the belief of all monotheists.
    From the upper tier of the Leppings Lane End of the Hillsborough Stadium, I watched the events of that day unfold with horror.
    When the flowers want to oxygen and nutrition, or you’re a wedding or party planner, I will help you too much.
    Write that word in the blood

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    Supporting Member spot's Avatar
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    Re: Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by ZAP View Post
    when I try to concentrate, my mind flits off to Andromeda or other galaxies, wondering about what it's like there.
    Rain with occasional dry spells, according to the BBC 3-day forecast.
    Nullius in verba|||||||||||
    Who has a spare two minutes to play in this month's FG Trivia game!

    The watch of your vision has become reasonable today.

    It’s normal. You must provoke. You must insult the belief of all monotheists. You must make fun of the belief of all monotheists.
    From the upper tier of the Leppings Lane End of the Hillsborough Stadium, I watched the events of that day unfold with horror.
    When the flowers want to oxygen and nutrition, or you’re a wedding or party planner, I will help you too much.
    Write that word in the blood

  9. #9
    Supporting Member spot's Avatar
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    Re: Gravity

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruv View Post
    Should I cut my fingernails again ?
    Their ability to attract doesn't depend on their being attached. You should definitely stop biting them though.
    Nullius in verba|||||||||||
    Who has a spare two minutes to play in this month's FG Trivia game!

    The watch of your vision has become reasonable today.

    It’s normal. You must provoke. You must insult the belief of all monotheists. You must make fun of the belief of all monotheists.
    From the upper tier of the Leppings Lane End of the Hillsborough Stadium, I watched the events of that day unfold with horror.
    When the flowers want to oxygen and nutrition, or you’re a wedding or party planner, I will help you too much.
    Write that word in the blood

  10. #10
    Supporting Member ZAP's Avatar
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    Re: Gravity

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    Quote Originally Posted by spot View Post
    Rain with occasional dry spells, according to the BBC 3-day forecast.
    Good, I love rain!

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