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Thread: Life without gravitation

  1. #1 Life without gravitation 
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    Suppose that there is space station deep in space far away from any massive objects. It is populated by humans, a nuclear reactor provides energy, and the people are living lives similar to that on Earth except in zero gravity. Now suppose that within an imaginary sphere that completely contains the station the gravitational interaction ceases to apply.

    What would happen?

    Another way of putting this is to ask how essential in gravitation to life and human activity on Earth except for its cosmic effects like Earth's gravity, it's rotation around the sun, etc?


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  3. #2  
    Forum Masters Degree Numsgil's Avatar
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    Well for Humans at least gravity is extremely important. Astronauts on the ISS have to routinely do exercises to slow bone loss. And even then there's still some bone loss.


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  4. #3 Life in zero gravity 
    Forum Freshman vistotutti's Avatar
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    To paraphrase Arthur C Clark from 2001 A space Odyssey;
    No (Male) Scientist can get any work done in zero gravity, because of the effect of zero gravity on the breasts of the women scientists around them.
    It is just far too distracting
    --
    There is that which is known.That which is known to be Unknown. The unknown that is unknown to be unknown... and that which is thought to be known, but is actually unknown.
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  5. #4  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope MagiMaster's Avatar
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    I think the question here is, what is the difference between a free fall situation, an actual microgravity situation, and a hypothetical no-gravity-at-all situation on the human body. I can't actually answer the question, but Numsgil is right about the general health problems any of the above would cause.
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  6. #5  
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    Thank you for your replies but you misunderstood my question. I am interested in the importance of gravitation as one of the four fundamental interactions, not the importance of gravity on Earth's surface.

    If inside that hypothetical sphere any of the other fundamental interactions ceased to apply all hell would break loose. If the electromagnetic interaction stopped atoms would no longer interact with each other and electrons would go flying everywhere. If the strong interaction stopped - well I can imagine that the space station would vanish in a poof as nuclei would break down.

    So what would happen if the gravitational interaction stopped?
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  7. #6  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScienceWizard
    So what would happen if the gravitational interaction stopped?
    Apples would no longer inspire geniuses.
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  8. #7  
    Forum Masters Degree Numsgil's Avatar
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    Well nothing so dramatic would happen. You know, except for the whole all stars in the universe exploding at once thing. But gravity isn't a force needed for life necessarily, like with the other forces. It's just that we've adapted to gravity and so we sort of need it the same way we adapted to an oxygen rich atmosphere and need that. Although again, not quite so dramatic.
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  9. #8  
    Forum Freshman deadcat's Avatar
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    I think we would be forced to evolve if there were enough people otherwise they would get fat, lazy underexercised poor blood circulation/heath etc... they would need to at least exercise, if they did that then I don't see what other effects it could have but that doesn't mean there aren't any.
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