Comic 15 - COINCIDENCE THREE (A Weak Grasp of Timing)

19th Jan 2014, 12:49 PM
COINCIDENCE THREE (A Weak Grasp of Timing)
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alschroeder 19th Jan 2014, 12:49 PM edit delete
If you want to get some idea how the nucleosynthesis, the formation of hydrogen and helium after the Big Bang is affected by the weak force, you can go here for a fuller explanation.

We only have one example of life in the entire universe: Earth's. It's hard to make generalizations on one example, but we have to assume the Principle of Mediocrity--that the evolution of life on Earth isn't Atypical, isn't freakishly short or long...that we're not at the extreme far end, extremely longer than normal, or extremely short end, extremely shorter than normal.

But a helium star only lasts under a million years. Not enough time for any lifeform similar to ours to evolve--about the only intelligent life in science fiction that MIGHT evolve in that short a time would be the neutron star-dwelling beings of Robert L. Forward's DRAGON EGG. Maybe.

Multi-celled life is much older than we used to believe (we used to believe 600 million years old, but recent discoveries pushed it back to two billion years) but what little there was, was not complex at all.

A helium star only lasts a relative short while by cosmic standards. Ten-thousandth the time a hydrogen star lasts--and three-thousandth the time it took you and me to evolve to walk the earth.

Half the time, I could believe. One tenth, possibly. But one three-thousandth?

The weak force constant range in which both Coincidences Two and Coincidences Three could happen--where type two Supernovas could happen (to spread higher elements to form planets and complex lifeforms) and stars lasting long enough for complex life to evolve--is very, VERY narrow.

Next time we'll address some recent speculations on a "Weakless" universe, a universe totally without the weak force. Then--Coincidence Four.