Friday, March 28, 2008

Happy April Doom's Day!

The rundown of cosmic doomsdays now posted on the FQXi Community isn't a joke exactly, but please don't take it too seriously. Sure, the world could end tomorrow via vacuum nucleation, a baby black hole, or a burst of gamma rays, but the odds are, as the physicists say, vanishingly small.

However, if the FQXi article piqued your interest, check this out: There's a star with all the right ingredients for a gamma ray burst, it could blow at any time, and it's pointed at us! Should you start running for cover from this death star? Not quite yet. As the Bad Astronomer writes,

It is possible that one of the stars may explode as a GRB, and it’s possible it’s aimed at us, but we don’t know. And we don’t know exactly what effects it would have on us. So if it’s less than 10,000 years from exploding and if it blows up as a GRB and if it’s aimed at us and if there isn’t much junk between us and it, then yeah, we may have a problem. But that’s an awful lot of ifs.