Asteroid Hits Earth! How the Doomsday Scenario Would Play Out

We can't protect ourselves from incoming ordnance, but we have a pretty good idea of what a big hit would be like

  • Share
  • Read Later
Getty Images

Space is an exceedingly random place. Everything in the known universe may be governed by some pretty hard laws of physics, but so are BBs in a jar when you shake them up and down. That doesn’t stop things from getting very chaotic inside. The same extreme arbitrariness is worth keeping in mind as we contemplate our planet’s close brush with an asteroid this week.

(FROM THE ARCHIVESAsteroids: Whew!)

As TIME reports in this week’s issue (available to subscribers here), astronomers have known for the better part of a year that asteroid 2012 DA14—a medium sized, 150 ft (50 m) rock weighing 143,000 tons—was closing in on us. They knew that it would miss us too, by 17,200 miles (27,700 km).  That seems like a big number, but in a solar system measured in billions of miles and a universe measured in billions of light years, it vanishes to inconsequence. The fact is, the odds of our getting clobbered by the rogue rock were in some ways the same as its missing us—at least when you fold into the equation how little it would have taken to change both its course and its impact. So what would those x-factors have been that would have turned a near miss into a true disaster, and what would the nastiness that resulted have looked like?

Let’s start by making 2012 DA14 bigger—though it hardly needs the extra bulk. At its current size, it would produce a blast equivalent to 2.4 megatons, or 180 Hiroshimas, after it entered our atmosphere.  A significantly bigger asteroid would produce a significantly bigger blast and there’s no shortage of those cosmic missiles out there. Astronomers estimate there are 2,400 objects in the vicinity of Earth that are at least 0.5 km (0.3 mi) across and 860 of those are a full 1 km (.62 mi.). A 0.5 km rock would produce a 5,000 megaton blast—not to mention a 7.1 Richter-scale shock. Let’s split the difference then, but err on the size of conservatism: Our death rock would be a comparatively modest 100 m, or 330 ft., across.

(MORE: The Committee to Save the Planet: Who Watches the Asteroids?)

The speed of the object would make a difference too. Over the course of the past several months, 2012 DA14 has been clipping along at a brisk 17,450 mph (28,000 k/h), and that’s what packs it so full of energy. Just like a baseball that’s tossed lightly at your chest doesn’t hurt you but a fastball thrown by a pro player would crack your sternum, so too does velocity turn a nuisance rock into a unguided missile. But the speed of 2012 DA14, not to mention its angle of flight, saved our hides too. A difference of a few centimeters per second—faster or slower, depending on when and where the force was applied—would have been enough to shift the asteroid’s trajectory and put us in its crosshairs. A random bump from a smaller bit of space rubble could have done that trick, as could a gravity tug from a larger object the asteroid passed. So could the light of the sun.

Solar energy becomes heat energy when it strikes an asteroid,  and that can exert a physical force all its own. A rock with a bright surface reflects more light away and feels less of an effect. A darker surface absorbs more and gets nudged more. And solar flares—which occur unpredictably—can mix things up further, exerting a sudden pressure that compounds the sun’s the slow, steady one.

“Heat can push these bodies around,” says Paul Chodas, a research scientist in the Near-Earth Object (NEO) Program Office at NASA‘s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena. “We can determine future trajectories out to about 100 years, but there are uncertainties like this that make it difficult to forecast as reliably for the smaller objects.” Asteroids that have traces of water—and in a cosmos as heavily  hydrated as ours that’s not uncommon—can outgas tiny amounts of vapor, which act as small, natural thrusters that perturbs the flight path further. Given all of those x-factors, it’s hardly unreasonable to say that 2012 DA14 might have easily gotten nudged our way.

The first word of the incoming missile would likely come from one of three main observatories NASA has assigned to scan the sky for cosmic ordnance all day, every day. But amateurs and academic observatories around the world could spot it too (it was an amateur who discovered 2012 DA14, in fact). We also might not see it at all. Like fighter planes taking advantage of natural blind spots in the sky, asteroids can approach from the direction of the sun, making them impossible to see until it’s way too late. “The smaller ones aren’t even visible until they’re on the way back out,” says Don Yeomans, head of the NEO office.

(MORE: Duck! Close Shave With an Asteroid Coming)

But imagine we saw our 100-meter asteroid when it was, say, eight months away. NASA would first send out word to the rest of the world’s astronomers, who would begin training their telescopes on it too, something they do already even for benign rocks. They measure light output, rotation rate and trajectory, conducting their own plight-path calculations to help confirm what the NASA software is spitting out. Radio-telescopes at Goldstone Observatory in the Mojave Desert and the Aricebo Observatory in Puerto Rico would swing into position as well, bouncing signals off the rock to determine distance, velocity and doppler shift—or the stretching or compressing of the signals reflecting back to determine the degree to which the object is moving toward or away from the observer.

“There is a small army of worldwide professionals and amateurs doing this,” says Yeomans.

The good thing about so much crowd-sourcing is that when hundreds or thousands of astronomers reach a conclusion, you can be pretty sure it’s a solid one. The bad thing is that when that conclusion is one you don’t like, there’s no court of appeal. In this case, let’s imagine that the conclusion is a truly bad one—that our football-field sized rock would be targeting a populated area. And for the sake of doomsday pizzaz, let’s make that populated area New York City.

(MORE: Deep Space Industries: The Company That Wants to Mine Space)

The five boroughs that comprise the city have a total area of 469 sq. mi., including 164 sq. mi. of water, and are home to 8.3 million people. A rock barreling in from space would likely be made of some kind silicate—the overwhelming majority of asteroids are—which means it wouldn’t survive the blazing heat of entry intact and instead would explode in the sky. Trajectory analysts at NASA and elsewhere would be able to forecast the exact date, time, place and angle of entry, so imagine Central Park, at high noon, on a work day, at an angle of entry that maximizes the possible explosion.

As it happens, we have a very good idea of how things would unfold in a situation like that since an extremely similar scenario played out before, on June 30, 1908, near the Tunguska River in Central Russia. At 7:14 that morning, a massive blast from what is calculated to have been a 100-meter asteroid occurred somewhere from 3 to 6 mi. (5 to 10 km) above the surface. The region was heavily forested and lightly populated—which was a very good thing—but the devastation was nonetheless stunning. Roughly 80 million trees were leveled or incinerated in a footprint of destruction extending 830 sq. mi. (2,150 sq. km). The energy released by the blast is estimated to have been 30 megatons—or 1,000 Hiroshimas.

An 830 sq. mi blast ring has a radius of 14.4 mi. (23.2 km). Position that over New York City and you’d have destruction reaching deep into Queens in the east and Staten Island in the South; west to Paterson and Montclair, NJ; and north to Yonkers and New Rochelle, NY. Manhattan, the Bronx and Brooklyn would be swallowed whole. Evacuation in advance of the blast would be a massive challenge, since the array of bridges and tunnels that connect the boroughs are natural choke points. The many months of notice the residents would have before the big day arrived would make things a bit easier, but fleeing from an asteroid is very different from fleeing from other kinds of disasters. People evacuating in advance of, say, a hurricane can usually just load up their cars and go, since even after a superstorm like Katrina, most of them will simply be turning around and coming home. After a Tunguska-like blast, most people would not have any home left at all.

(VIDEO: How to Save Earth From Killer Asteroids By Using a Paintball Gun)

As with a nuclear blast, the devastation would be greatest at the epicenter of the event and fade the farther away you moved, and while there would be no radiation to contend with, the immediate destruction would be pretty much the same. In a 6.5 mi. radius, all that would be left of most buildings would be the foundations, though some sturdier, reinforced structures like stocky old banks might survive. Out to 11 or so miles, multi-story buildings would be skeletonized—their curtain walls stripped away and only their frameworks left standing. Small, individual family homes would be destroyed completely. It would not be until about 20 miles away that most tall buildings would survive—windowless, to be sure—and some single-family dwellings would too. The economic damage—nationally and globally—would be incalculable.

Tunguska-type hits are rare—even smaller asteroids like 2012 DA14 strike the planet only once every 1,200 years or so. Bigger objects—on the order of 2 km (1.25 mi.)—hit only every 100,000 years or so. The stakes being what they are, though, that’s little comfort. When you’re dealing with something like asteroids, all it takes is one. That’s something the dinosaurs of 65 million years ago could tell you—if an asteroid hadn’t killed them all, of course.

TIME MAGAZINE: (Very) Close Encounter

115 comments
ChristopherDack
ChristopherDack

God ?! . Sigh .. You claim to know what "your " god loves and does Lynnhooker ? . Science is about finding out no matter how we dont like the results sometimes. God is about sticking your head in sand and saying " no matter what im right your wrong "

ekantarovich
ekantarovich

If we added planets to Earth, then we'd be bigger than any asteroid.

LynnHooker
LynnHooker

Frankhy you really do not have a clue. This "god" you keep dissing is not who your little brain thinks he is. First of all, He never sent anyone to hell for eating certain foods. Secondly He is holy and we are not. But He didn't leave us in that lost condition-He sent His son to pay the price for our sins , and yes we all have sin. That sounds like a pretty loving God to me. Would you lay down your life for the wicked? Or even for anyone to save them? Yet, many will reject Him. The sad realization will come to those who reject Christ when they stand before God Almighty and explain why we didn't think we needed Jesus and we were a "good" person. His standards of holiness are way above ours and no sin will be allowed in His presence. I pray God wakes you up before it is too late. 

JasperJohns
JasperJohns

All this recent asteroid business reminds me of this novel I just read called THE MYOSHI EFFECT which is about an asteroid headed toward earth and how everybody reacts and the government tries to find a way to deflect it. Granted the novel is humorous, like Dr Strangelove or Douglas Adams or something, but how we just reacted to these last 2 space rocks is almost taken from the pages of the book. Fiction and fact are fast becoming one.

raypeterson30
raypeterson30

Asteroids is gonna keill us awl faster than 9/11

luissaavedra
luissaavedra

It's "Arecibo" telescope not "Aricebo" ;)

anonymitty
anonymitty

Wrong about light pressure, Mr. Kluger. A bright, reflective surface will be pushed more by sunlight hitting it than a dark surface that absorbs the energy and then reradiates it. 


Asteroids spin. They don't turn any one face toward the sun. Energy that strikes the side of an asteroid that's facing the sun is like BBs hitting the asteroid, shot out from the sun. If it sticks, and then later pops off in a random direction, then only the initial impacts contribute to the overall momentum of the asteroid. The subsequent off-poppings cancel each other. But if the BBs  bounce back toward the sun, they count double. Overall momentum, as always, is conserved, but the BB's momentum wasn't just pretty well zeroed out, it was reversed.


Those toys with black and white panels inside a bulb demonstrating solar energy work because the dark panels are heated and the heat propels the bit of gas that's left in the bulb away from that side. It's a different phenomenon.

giuliano
giuliano

How can a destruction footprint be 2.150 square kilometeres if the radius of the circle is 23.2 Km? according to my geometry, that would give a 1.690 square kilometer circle

rocknrobert
rocknrobert

Google Planet X. As it comes near us every 3600 years or so, it is large enought to affect the path of asteroids and even our magnetic fields.

FredTurtle86
FredTurtle86

The Arecibo** Observatory in Puerto Rico; not "Aricebo". :)

VincentWolf
VincentWolf

There is a big dinosaur killer asteroid somewhere out there with our name on it you can be sure of that.  And it won't matter what it's trajectory is once it's here that's it were history.  Man does not have the capability right now of deflecting a 6 mile wide meteor.  We don't have have the capability of deflecting a 100 foot meteor because we don't have our heads in the right place.

JuliusRobinson
JuliusRobinson

Here is the ultimate irony, if that rock had missed 65 million years ago, we wouldn't be here. Something else, smarter, dumber, but not us. 

lafikdadi
lafikdadi

Let it be known that second coming of the Son will be likewise; in a second everything we will be doing will just come to a perpetual end and will be no more

RodVenger
RodVenger

This is an incredibly nonsensical and irresponsible bit of journalism. Some scientists have done some extrapolations to come up with the Tunguska data...it's size, mass, speed and height, but change any of those (be incorrect) and the rest of them must change as well. Further, NASA cannot even say with certainty where a satellite that they are guiding will come down. They guide it down into the atmosphere where physics says it will likely land somewhere in the pacific, but that's the best they can do. Not all re-entries are created equal and if a satellite starts to tumble, everything changes. So, we can do away with the notion that NASA or anyone else could say with certainty that a rock is going to come down and detonate over NYC. Not going to happen. At best it's one set of thousands of possibles. They can know the trajectory and entry point a few minutes before entry...they can tell us the path it will take, but that can change depending on the shape of the rock as well as it's angle. Even a rock entering straight down at a 90 degree angle to NYC would not necessarily continue on that path. A flat surface facing downward, versus a rounded or angled one, could easily cause the rock to tack north or south, east or west. You're going to evacuate NYC days or weeks ahead of a hit only to have that rock change direction inside the atmosphere and then impact the evacuees in some spot 100 or 500 miles away? Smart move, eh? The thing could have been weakened over the millenia and could bust up long before it hit earth, splitting into dozens or hundreds of chunks, shotgunning the entire Northeast with surviving chunks. Or those chunks could in turn redetonate over and over over a few second time and nothing survives to hit the ground. The whole thing could survive and slam into the ocean in which case the whole NE seaboard could be awash with tsunamis, or it could splash down a thousand miles out to sea and jeopardize the entire Atlantic...fish, crustaceans, mammals, plus the landborn people and animals on all affected coastlines all the way out to Africa...all wiped out by the waterborne shockwave and tsunamis. Fact is...it's not possible to "prepare" for a land event since its not possible to actually predict one with any certainty. The article serves only to make people nervous about the what-ifs and also to pry money loose from governments world wide for asteroid watching. That's already big news, with chicken little's all over the world screaming that we have to do something. This "once-in-100-year event" is only being called that because someone did the math between this event and the Tunguska event...but did they look back to the previous 100 years and the 100 years previous to that? You'd need at least 500 years of data, possibly more, to accurately label this a once in a 100 year event...another could hit tomorrow for all we know, and now that I think about it, we've seen some pretty big rocks fly overhead in the atmosphere just in our lifetimes. I can think of 2 that I have seen myself, whoppers, both. Only their angle kept them from being destructive, both came in, flew through, and kept on going. The sky may or may not be falling, but even if it is, we are in no position to responsibly evacuate ANYONE from ANY spot on the planet since we are just as likely to move them into the margin of error created by an irregular object coming into a thick atmosphere from space. Ask any mortorman or artillery officer about that margin of error. Sometimes, you do more damage than good just by trying to do good.

Dreiah
Dreiah

A recently published book called "Comets and the Horns of Moses" does a great job of explaining the history of comets and asteroids and their interaction with our planet. The book also provides evidence that major impact events are by no means "rare" in human history. It's a 'must read' for those who want to get up to speed on this increasingly important topic. Your life, or the life of a loved one, could depend on it!

Truth786
Truth786

These are the drones from Almighty. USA, please stop the drones on innocents otherwise, there is one that is suffice to eat the innocents in US also..

Ephesians618
Ephesians618

Seems Familiar:

But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed. Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. - 

2 Peter 3:10-13

The_Myth
The_Myth

How it will play out? It hits earth...that's how. 

ColinMarcus
ColinMarcus

"Solar energy becomes heat energy when it strikes an asteroid,  and that can exert a physical force all its own. A rock with a bright surface reflects more light away and feels less of an effect. A darker surface absorbs more and gets nudged more."

This is completely incorrect. It's actually the exact opposite - a perfectly black (absorbing) surface would simply absorb the photon momentum inelastically, giving a force F, but a perfectly reflecting surface interacts elastically - it reverses the photon's momentum, meaning it would experience a force 2F.

ZacPetit
ZacPetit

@VincentWolf We are an incredibly resilient species. I do not doubt that we would survive even a 6 mile wide monster. There would be far fewer of us, sure, but I think as a species we would live on.

elhamb3166
elhamb3166

@RodVenger You might consider a structural change to your post--like a paragraph or two or three or---you do know what a paragraph is. don't you?  Maybe not.

topscientist
topscientist

@RodVenger *** This "once-in-100-year event" is only being called that because someone did the math between this event and the Tunguska event...but did they look back to the previous 100 years and the 100 years previous to that? ***

Oh and yes, dimwit, they did. The studied the whole history of known impacts, looked at the density of impacts on the moon, considered the distribution of known objects in orbits that intersect the earth. Unlike you, they know what they're talking about.

topscientist
topscientist

@RodVenger You have no idea what you're babbling about. Predicting satellite re-entry is tricky because it's not certain when it's going to happen. It's a slow process of an orbit decaying due to atmospheric friction. A meteor impact is nothing like that. It can deflect a bit due to the atmosphere, but the point of impact can be known pretty well in advance.

RodVenger
RodVenger

@Dreiah Yeah that's it...fuel more paranoia. It's good for the soul, don't ya know?

Frankhy
Frankhy

@Truth786 So why did this a-hole you call "Almighty" injure innocents civilians in Russia? Is it the same guy who sends out the tsunamis and earthquakes?  If indeed there was an entity named "Almighty" shooting rockets at innocents, I'd like to see him or her brought before brought to justice sooner rather than later because I am fed up with his murder lust.

Frankhy
Frankhy

@famulla5 It's a different one. They did not see this one coming. Space reasearch is horribly underfunded around the world. 2012 DA14 was discovered by amateur astronomers, becuase the publicly funded agencies don't have enough resources to do more than a puny fraction of what is needed. Meanwhile, mankind is spending 1000 times more on following the Kardashians latest antics, and eating popcorns and buying Prada bags. We all sure got our priorities right, eh.

Frankhy
Frankhy

@Ephesians618 That "Lord" you speak of really do enjoy genocide and slaughtering of innocents, eh? Seems like a great guy. Really. Tell me, how is he different from Hitler?

HermNelson
HermNelson

Okay, it is making more sense.  Since a photon clearly has energy greater than zero, mass M, while a small number, is actually greater than zero also.  Bottom line, the bright rock gets repelled more by radiation than the dark rock.  Of course, gravitational force from the star would act in the opposite direction at the same time.  What else?  It seems like there is certainly room for some Kentucky windage when you try to calculate the trajectory of these things. 

HermNelson
HermNelson

I was puzzling over this.  Are you sure that is how it works?  Since photons are massless, the basic equations like F=MA and P=MV2 do not apply like they would for billiard balls.  The blackbody would gain energy as heat, but this would be re-radiated as low-energy (infrared?) photons, correct? 

Dreiah
Dreiah

@topscientist@RodVenger "Oh and yes, dimwit, they did. The studied the whole history of known impacts, looked at the density of impacts on the moon, considered the distribution of known objects in orbits that intersect the earth. Unlike you, they know what they're talking about."

Yes they did look back, and unfortunately you didn't go any further than that. What they found were longer extinction cycles and shorter impact cycles. Of course most of the scientists who came to these conclusions were silenced and took the route of writing books on their findings in which case many are saying the same thing. You can come to your own conclusions as to why this might not be the best thing to be public knowledge.




RodVenger
RodVenger

I never 'babble' though I do tend to stretch out my explanations. I have my own style...sorry if it bothers you. No matter. Please back up your assertion...your very surprising assertion...with some data. I'll need to see the dates and times of these predicted impact events, along with their predicted impact points, along with the actual impact points. It'll be interesting to see what variances there are in the data versus the predictions.

That should be a fairly simple request to fulfill if they can actually "be known pretty well in advance.". -Rod-

RodVenger
RodVenger

@topscientist@RodVenger I never 'babble' though I do tend to stretch out my explanations. I have my own style...sorry if it bothers you. No matter. Please back up your assertion...your very surprising assertion...with some data. I'll need to see the dates and times of these predicted impact events, along with their predicted impact points, along with the actual impact points. It'll be interesting to see what variances there are in the data versus the predictions.

That should be a fairly simple request to fulfill if they can actually "be known pretty well in advance.". -Rod-


Dreiah
Dreiah

@RodVenger@Dreiah Fireball sightings have increased by a factor of 4.5 (450%) since 2005 - the curve looks exponential. And now this Tunguska-like event. It has been shown that the earth goes through periodic bombardment by comets and their debris fields. These have been linked to the collapse of historic civilizations. 

The book has hardcore documentation on earth's history of comet bombardment. It isn't about a one time fluke as everyone is making it. This is a very real phenomenon that has happened repeatedly, and there is plenty of evidence to come to the conclusion that it is happening again. This ties into all of the crazy weather we have been seeing around the planet lately, along with the platonic movements, which have resulted in earthquakes, volcanoes, and sinkholes. All someone has to do is look at the national news on a daily basis, without their rose colored glasses, to come to the realization that something really is going on here!

rohit57
rohit57

@Frankhy @Truth786 I notice that this "one with murder lust" is allowing you to kill cows and eat beef, he is allowing you to use the internet and shout curses at him, etc.

CariJBennettDukes
CariJBennettDukes

Seriously, get it right, I do not watch Kardashians, I watch Cougar Town, I do not use Prada, I myself love Coco Chanel, ad its not popcorn, its a good bag of dorito's and a cold coke!!

CariJBennettDukes
CariJBennettDukes

Oh oh I got this one... he differs for a few reasons... God gave people free will.. so should we choose to screw the earth up with our modern advancements, and pollutions, its our problem, He has shown many times over to be a bit more on que than science, and ... well he is simply special.. where does he differ from Hitler.. God gave free will. Hitler took it ;)

anonymitty
anonymitty

@HermNelson There's room for a lot of work. You've got the gravity from the sun, the gravity from the earth, from the moon, from the other planets, light pressure, solar wind, maybe even magnetic effects. But when you're 8 months out, the small effects don't have time to add up. It's pretty much sun gravity, earth gravity, moon gravity, and maybe light pressure. 

anonymitty
anonymitty

@HermNelson Photons are not massless. Because of E=M c squared, they have some mass. They also have momentum, being masses going fast. The basic equation, by the way, is P=MV. Say a photon has p worth of momentum, and the rock has q. After a nonbounce collision, the photon is gone and the rock has p+q. After a bounce collision, the photon has momentum -p and the rock has 2p+q. 

topscientist
topscientist

@HermNelson Photons are only "massless" at rest. Which they never can be. At light speed they do have momentum.

ColinMarcus
ColinMarcus

@HermNelson Photons do indeed have momentum. The relativistically correct way of writing the energy of an object is:

E^2=(mc^2)^2+(pc)^2

For a photon m=0, so we get E=pc. This can alternatively be written as p=h/wavelength. You can use this momentum in the same way as the newtonian momentum, i.e. in elastic and inelastic collisions.

In general a blackbody does re-radiate any absorbed heat after it reaches equilibrium temperature. This generates additional photon pressure out along the Sol-asteroid vector, since the side facing the Sun is much hotter than the dark side.

RodVenger
RodVenger

@anonymitty @RodVenger @topscientist I'd suggest you do the math and see what that deflection is. I used to be a benchrest and tactical shooter, competing with medium caliber rifles over long and often unknown distances, shortest 100 yards, longest out to around 800 yards. Ballistics are fairly basic when you know speed, , time of flight, direction and range. Your 10 miles or air resistance gives you the range, you have the speed and direction in this case needs to be thought of in terms of your deflection. (In truth, the reason for the deflection is vital because the shape of the rock could make it more than you think, acting as a virtual rudder).But in this case, let's just say the initial deflection is 1/10th of a degree. A little knowledge of ballistics or some algebra/geometry will give you a surprising answer. Not trying to put you on the spot, anonymitty, but Topper's gone strangely quiet. I was hoping he'd be up to finishing the game...he can't answer because are is no data and no examples to cite. Nothing he suggested has never been done with an actual meteoroid impacting the planet.  lol

anonymitty
anonymitty

@RodVenger @topscientist The premise of the story is that a big rock is coming in at 17000 mph or so, aimed straight at NYC and coming straight on, not at an angle. Half the atmosphere is within 3 miles of the surface, so let's be generous and say the rock faces 10 miles of serious air resistance. At a speed of 17000 mph, it'll take 1 part in 1700 of an hour to get through to near the ground. That's a little over two seconds. In two seconds it won't be deflected much.

Dreiah
Dreiah

@topscientist  If you are a "Topscientist" as your name entails, then I'd assume you have to be somewhat familiar with the electrical theory of the universe.

In short the scenario plays out something like this: The upper atmosphere becomes loaded with cometary debris, which causes a grounding effect that ever so slightly slows the rotation of the earth, which results in an opening up phenomenon. There is more to it than that, but nuff said.

Frankhy
Frankhy

@rohit57Yes, but if I dare eat some pork or anything from the sea or something with more than four legs, I will burn in hell after death, or get fried on Judgement Day (whatever comes first), unless I am part of the Christian flavour of his disciples, in which case it has been decided by my ancestors that I am allowed to cherry-pick which of his commands apply and which can be ignored. However, in either case, while I am allowed to eat beef, I will still burn in hell for eternity if I am using his name in any way that might offend him. Yeah. Like I said, seems like a great guy. Not psychotic at all. 

Frankhy
Frankhy

@CariJBennettDukes How is it "free will" if his policy is: "Do what you want, but if you don't do what I tell you, I will punish you with burning in hell for eternity". Anyway, what we were discussing here was his intended plans, according to @Ephesians618 and the  bible, of "The Lord" to slaughter everyone in a great genocide at the end of days (just like he has, again according to the "holy" bible they follow, already done repeatedly in the past). If this guy,"The  Lord", actually existed and wasn't imagined, he should be stopped, arrested and impeached, not worshiped. What you just described with free will is no different from what atheists are saying (namely that God doesn't do anything). That's fine. But this post what was the bible and it's followers are saying.

anonymitty
anonymitty

@ColinMarcus @HermNelson But the side facing the sun will not remain facing the sun. These things spin. So at least some of the energy reradiated after being absorbed as heat will be in the form of photons going off in the "wrong" direction.