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NASA gizmo aboard ISS to create coldest atoms in known universe -- what might happen?

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posted on May, 20 2018 @ 06:48 PM
This new experiment is the best bet YET for the kind of break-through physics that theoretical physicists have dreamed of all their lives. The long-shot-but-awesome-payoff apparatus got manifested via creative accounting by the ISS science office which, because other on-board gear was functioning longer than expected, so funds allocated for repairs and replacement parts weren't spent, and this candidate proposal with mature flight hardware 'in the hip pocket' was an attractive quick-add. The atoms will be cooled even closer to absolute zero than intergalactic dust. At the exact opposite dimensional scale from the Hubble, this device may make equally-enormous breakthroughs -- worth trying, worth risking, worth hoping. ISS made it possible.

posted on May, 20 2018 @ 08:26 PM
a reply to: JimOberg

The atoms will need a jacket..

That’s my guess.

posted on May, 20 2018 @ 08:30 PM
a reply to: JimOberg

Good thing they are doing it in space. The math predicts that when a sufficient number of bec's are created they can all occupy the same space through entanglement creating mass multiplication. They aren't using a lot of atoms though, so it shouldn't be a problem, as it would be on a mass concentrated rock, like say our planet.

Cheers - Dave

posted on May, 21 2018 @ 06:10 AM
A deformation that should not exists that would create a infinite big hole in space that will suck everything in.

posted on May, 21 2018 @ 08:53 AM
We might make really cold Icecream?

posted on May, 21 2018 @ 09:14 AM
a reply to: JimOberg

They will be able to physically see and move the atoms with their fingers.

edit on 21-5-2018 by scraedtosleep because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 21 2018 @ 01:55 PM

The Cold Atom Laboratory (CAL) is a compact instrument about the size of a beer cooler, and it uses lasers to generate a super-cooled environment 10 billion times colder than the vacuum of space. It's so cold inside CAL that atoms become nearly motionless; CAL then uses magnets to trap the slowed atoms so that scientists can observe their movements and how they interact.

The vacuum of space is cold, about minus 455 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 270.55 degrees Celsius). But temperatures inside CAL will be even colder: nearly absolute zero (absolute zero is minus 459.67 degrees F, or minus 273.15 degrees C).

At that temperature, atoms slow down so much that they begin to enter the same quantum state, exhibiting the same amount of energy as one another, NASA representatives explained. Their behavior becomes more wavelike, and they start to synchronize like a line of dancers — a phenomenon known as a Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC).

And in the microgravity of the ISS, atoms are expected to retain this state of matter for up to 10 seconds, offering researchers the possibility of observing quantum behavior never seen before, according to a CAL mission description.

CAL can trap three types of atoms for scientists to study — rubidium and two isotopes of potassium — cooling them to near-immobility in seconds and holding them in magnetic traps for observation by scientists back on Earth. - This Box Could Become the Coldest Spot in the Universe.

What might happen? I might be putting my Coors Light in there!! Might? I totally would!

They will get to see quantum wave functions in action for 10 seconds. That is pretty cool science in and of itself. Since most quantum states are incredibly short, they should be better able to predict and measure theoretical models which will make real world devices that much better when run here on earth.

Who knows, maybe see what gravity actually is and finally add that back into the equations... maybe let that "quantum magic" thing out of the bag and BAM! We will be living in a Star Wars world overnight.

posted on May, 21 2018 @ 02:01 PM

BAM! We will be living in a Star Wars world overnight. 

That's no moon... It's a ... space station!

posted on Dec, 21 2018 @ 01:41 PM

Seven months after its May 21, 2018, launch to the space station from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia, CAL is producing ultracold atoms daily. Five teams of scientists will carry out experiments on CAL during its first year, and three experiments are already underway.

The process to create the cold atom clouds starts with lasers that begin to lower the temperature by slowing the atoms down. Radio waves cut away the warmest members of the group, further lowering the average temperature. Finally, the atoms are released from a magnetic trap and allowed to expand. This causes a drop in pressure that, in turn, naturally causes another drop in the cloud's temperature (the same phenomenon that causes a can of compressed air to feel cold after use). In space, the cloud has longer to expand and thus reach even lower temperatures than what can be achieved on Earth—down to about one ten billionth of a degree above absolute zero, perhaps even lower., Dec. 21, 2018 - The coolest experiment in the universe.

An update, a little overview, and, a deeper explanation of all that went in to preparing CAL (in the article).

I have not seen any articles pop up so they are still running experiments.

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