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Would You Freeze?
A few recent Hollywood films showed people instantly freezing solid when exposed to vacuum. In one of these, the scientist character mentioned that the temperature was "minus 273"-- that is, absolute zero.
But in a practical sense, space doesn't really have a temperature-- you can't measure a temperature on a vacuum, something that isn't there. The residual molecules that do exist aren't enough to have much of any effect. Space isn't "cold," it isn't "hot", it really isn't anything.
What space is, though, is a very good insulator. (In fact, vacuum is the secret behind thermos bottles.) Astronauts tend to have more problem with overheating than keeping warm.
If you were exposed to space without a spacesuit, your skin would most feel slightly cool, due to water evaporating off you skin, leading to a small amount of evaporative cooling. But you wouldn't freeze solid!
Originally posted by kingsnake
Well when we are under immense pressure we are crushed. So on vacuum, where there's no pressure, we expand and break into smaller and smaller pieces until our body fluids and solid remains find a low energy state and occupy a large portion of space. If a human was put on a container, then it would occupy it and stop expanding, creating an atmosphere and thus pressure. If a human is ejected into space it would just keep spraying away.
Tool equals great music, though.
[edit on 29/10/2008 by kingsnake]
Originally posted by schism85
That is a great answer. I could see that happening. I thought maybe we would just eventually be broken down into molecules, considering all the water vapor would just seep right out of us, we would swell up and the ebullism would tear apart our skin and maybe eventually we would just turn to tiny little particles. Just a guess.
Some degree of consciousness will probably be retained for 9 to 11 seconds (see chapter 2 under Hypoxia). In rapid sequence thereafter, paralysis will be followed by generalized convulsions and paralysis once again. During this time, water vapor will form rapidly in the soft tissues and somewhat less rapidly in the venous blood. This evolution of water vapor will cause marked swelling of the body to perhaps twice its normal volume unless it is restrained by a pressure suit.
The key concerns for a human without protective clothing beyond Earth’s atmosphere are the following, listed roughly in the ascending order of mortal significance: ebullism, hypoxia, hypocapnia, decompression sickness, extreme temperature variations and cellular mutation and destruction from high energy photons and (sub-atomic) particles.
Symptoms of ebullism include bubbles in the membranes of the mouth and eyes, swelling of the skin, and bubbles in the blood. Blood circulation and breathing may be impaired or stopped. The brain tissue may be starved of oxygen because of blockage of arteries, and the lungs may swell and hemorrhage. Death results unless recompression is rapid enough to reduce the bubbles before tissue damage occurs
Originally posted by schism85
my question to you, is what happens after the 2 minutes? What happens to the remains, if no one is around to pull you back in?
[edit on 29-10-2008 by schism85]