Time

Time is a measure of non-stop, consistent change in our surroundings, usually from a specific viewpoint.

While the concept of time is self-evident and intuitive – the steady passing of events before our eyes; the orbit of the Moon around our planet – describing its fundamental nature is much harder.

Even physicists aren’t sure what actually happens when time passes. Although they do have a few hypotheses.

The concept of God’s Time has been discussed here on this blog as it is written in Greek in the New Testament. Chronos is chronological time (10:03 am). Kairos is “when it’s time”, not tethered to a clock.

Relative time is the scientific concept, largely proven, that gravity curves space and time: The stronger the gravity, the more it curves space-time, and the more time slows down.

Similarly, the space-contorting volume beyond the horizon of a black hole also distorts perspectives of time.

In our Universe, we have freedom of space and can move around as we like, but we’re forced to march along time’s arrow in a linear direction.

Calculations show that crossing over a black hole’s horizon would swap those freedoms. So we’d no longer have to follow time’s strict arrow of direction, but we’d lose the freedom to move around in space, allowing for time travel (of sorts).

While these scenarios help us better understand time’s nature, both light speed and black hole travel have constraints that prevent us from using them as practical ways to reverse time.

One thing is certain – our time here on Earth is finite. Use what time you have wisely.

 

Flying to a Comet

 

A Video from the Surface

of a comet

Rosetta,  the comet-chasing European Space Agency (ESA) probe that deployed (and accidentally bounced) its lander Philae on the surface of Comet 67P brought us this gif, made up of images Rosetta beamed back to Earth. They have been freely available online for a while.

 

Saturn’s Core

Is Saturn’s core a big, diffuse, rocky, slushball? (h/t Claudio)

The models that fit the data place Saturn’s core-envelope boundary a significant distance from the planet’s center, roughly 60 percent of the way to the surface. That’s a radius of nearly 60,000 kilometers or over nine times Earth’s radius.

Jupiter? What about the King of Planets?

Based on gravitational measurements of the planet and the generally accepted understanding of the early solar system, scientists believe that the core of the planet is a mixture of rocks swept up by the condensing mass as it orbited the sun and hydrogen that has been so compressed (>4000 Gpa) that it has undergone a phase transition and become a liquid metal.

Up until recently, estimates have been that the core of Jupiter is about 15 times the mass of the Earth and is about 5% of the mass of Jupiter. However, scientists have been able to create metallic hydrogen in the laboratory. They were able to do it at lower pressures than expected (about 270 GPa). This means that the sea of metallic hydrogen on Jupiter may be more vast than we expected.

That said, you might not want to swim in that ocean.

 

SpaceX Starlink

Musk’s satellites are said to be responsible for over half of close encounters in orbit. He’s not stopping, he’s launching lots more…

 

Machines

New Indian Army anti-drone weapons system

Back in WWI

We’ve come a long way…

 

Steel Beach Picnic

Sound off (like you have a set) if you’ve ever been to a steel beach picnic. In the photo, above, the CO of a nuclear attack-type submarine (name not identified here) wets a line. SSBNs don’t do this but in some situations, an SSN can. Sometimes the boat ships pipe hitters (as supercargo). They usually swim while only some of the bubbleheads partake. There’s almost always a BBQ with burgers and brats. I guess there are women now, too. I wasn’t around long enough to see that happen. My guess is that they are toxic to your career and survivors don’t fraternize.

 

Insurrection?

The FBI now says that the January 6th event at the Capitol was not a planned insurrection.

In that way,  they don’t need to disclose their hand in organizing the violence that plagued the gathering.

Slick.

38 COMMENTS

  1. The FBI’s silence speaks volume’s. What little credibility they had left has been swept away like dust in a Kansas wind storm. At least in my circles.

    • I’ve written on this blog a little about my experiences working with (not for) the FBI. I supervised FBI special agents – sorta. They were a subset of the task force I ran for four years. I was partnered with an FBI special agent for five years. He later became deputy director over the enterprise drug division. He remains a very good friend of mine. I have many stories of really wonderful people who worked at FBI.

      Then there is the flip side of that agency, which transitioned from a law enforcement agency to one with an intelligence mission that became premier, post 9/11. Today you’d do best to avoid the FBI and NEVER to trust that agency or its employees. For what it’s worth, they cut their own employees’ throats with as much pleasure as they cut yours.

      • Our senior high school class had one graduate who made a career with the FBI. If their vetting system couldn’t spot a weasel like him it was because they wanted weasels. I’ve never trusted any Federal law enforcement. Let me add my numerous LEO relatives agree.

        • The FBI training process is geared toward turning out weasels whose function is first and foremost to defend the FBI. FLETC (Georgia) is different and much of the federal law enforcement workforce are regulators. It’s a world apart from police work.

      • My experience working with FBI, DEA, ATF, Postal Police agents is they rely heavily on the local members of whatever task force they belong to, and spend most of their time generating reports and not doing actual law enforcement.

        Considering how totally frucked up most every fed agent I ever met was, probably a good thing they stayed in the office most of the time.

        • They leave the office when it’s time to put in for premium pay (sort of overtime for federal law enforcement), or when they’re shopping for a car, household appliances, a new flat screen TV, etc., or when it’s breakfast time or lunch time.

          • With COVID, I’m guessing that they turned into “no-show” jobs where the employees stayed home – and nothing changed.

            It’s not exactly a ‘welfare job’, but it sort of is too.

    • Yes, rank does have its privileges.

      I’m waiting for EdB to join in since his son was recently Chief-of-the-Boat on a nuclear attack boat. COB is a very responsible position. I don’t know whether or not you could enjoy a steel beach BBQ if you were COB.

        • I would predict yes if he’s a COB.

          In some commands, the master chiefs can hang out in the goat locker, but not a COB.

        • I sent the link of this to my son hoping for his response.
          He’s the one who, with a coffee cup attached to his hand, responded to a suicide attempt (via m4) by a young sailor while under way and was the first responder.
          With that coffee cup on his hand, he applied pressure to the wound and directed those around him.
          Then, at the direction of his skipper, with the coffee cup firmly affixed and blood soaking his uniform, drove the boat at high speed up the Thames river in a storm to a tug waiting at Fort Trumbull, where the men made a tunnel of raincoats as the sailor was transferred to the tug.
          The letter he received from the navy forgot to mention the coffee cup.

  2. I was on a boomer and we too had a couple of steel beach picnics. For the Atlantic boats it was usually after completing an annual TRE off of AUTEC in the Bahamas (at least if we did well, no steel beach if things didn’t go well). My boat was transferred to Pearl Harbor for decomm in the 90s but we did get a day of steel beach while surface transiting in the Pacific. One of the guys set up a bit of astroturf and made his own driving range off the back there – I saw a picture he saved although I don’t have it and that was pretty cool. The only thing more unique I know of submarine-wise was a guy I knew on one of the 637s who took his mountain bike aboard for a “Northern Run” and rode his own bike at the North Pole.

  3. Space: God’s laboratory. Fascinating on all fronts. And Earth had a trillion, trillion, trillion…etc..chance of life, but here we sit. Good stuff LL.

    Our orbit is getting crowded, like the top of Everest when you spent $100k to summit only to find a traffic jamb on the last bit. No thanks. Starlink…as long as MY particular satellite doesn’t get into a fender-bender up there, otherwise I’ll have to go back to that used car level Verizon Jetpack, which sucks.

    We already knew Jan 6th was a psyop, now confirmed, thusly swept under the rug, like the Whitmer “plot”. If a black SUV shows up with a couple of suits “not asking”, “Can you come with us, we just want to talk, and no, you don’t need a lawyer present.”, TELL them to get off your property, shut the door in their face…then activate Hydra 6 for good measure.

    Matthew 10:32-39 offers perspective in our crazy times…if we choose to see and accept Him.

    • Matthew 24 (the entire chapter) addresses much of what we see.

      We know today that there are a number of elements that apparently MUST be present for life as we know it to exist. The radiation belts exist because we have a dynamic liquid core. Tectonic plates exist to subduct carbon. They move slowly (hopefully) but they exist. Too much carbon and we end up like Venus. The Moon keeps the core of the planet churned up and the tides help in the process oceanic circulation. The Sun must be somewhat stable. We must be the correct distance from Sun (Goldilocks Zone), and on and on. Gas giants in the outer solar system tend to vacuum up comets. Too many comet strikes and the planet dies.

      • I’ve admittedly been shying from Matthew 24 despite all the signs pointing in that direction, and Christian friends believing we are “there”, mainly because I think God has other plans for this time despite the tribulation we find ourselves as we view the world through a narrow timeline lens as generations have before. I guess we’ll find out. In the meantime life is forward.

  4. Crowded orbits are the reason SpaceX is lowering their satellites to a closer orbit, so it’s easier to deorbit malfunctioning satellites.

    And defining and understanding ‘Time’ is rapidly approaching the level of either “We don’t know” or “That’s the way God made it.” Both answers are quite appropriate.

  5. I always thought “time” was the “distance” between two events. Don’t recall where I heard it, but it was a long time ago. Or, as Delany wrote, “Time Considered as a Helix of Semi-Precious Stones”, an interesting short story.

    The comet looks like a place I wouldn’t care to go. A bit too cold, it appears.

    Never went to a USN Steel Beach picnic, but went to plenty in my “Feather Merchant” days. “Pipe Hitters” is a new one to me.

  6. Without wishing to get into a timely🧐 discussion, either mathematical or theological (both certainly exceed my capacity for total understanding), I feel that the penultimate paragraph should come with an advisory: “at the moment.”
    I certainly won’t be around to see the research or results, but I have great faith in the inquisitiveness of the human race (to look upon the face of G-d?).

  7. Good insurrection call, spotted.
    But time… for God, the theologians tell us, it’s a simultaneity, eternity. Interesting to see physicists consider this. So for God, all times are one present moment and that end/telos is established, ie, if we’re going to heaven we’re there now, or not.

    Does this somehow contradict free-will? No, because present knowledge of a contingent event doesn’t make that event any the less contingent.

    Still, implacable Providence can be unsettling, to put it mildly. Thank God for mercy.

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