Hundreds of years of technological development have brought earth-shaking changes to people’s lives. Everything in this world has two sides, and while bringing benefits, it will also be accompanied by certain crises. The same is true of technology. It makes people’s life quality higher and higher, and also gives mankind a new understanding of the world and the universe.
However, with the continuous improvement of human cognition of the universe, we have also seen many crises. These crises come from the earth itself, from within human beings, and from the universe beyond the earth. The crisis of the earth itself, such as the periodic ecological changes, will bring about the mass extinction of the earth every time.
Human internal crises, such as possible nuclear wars in the future, once it happens, human science and technology civilization may directly go back to the original era. The crisis from the universe beyond the earth makes us even more afraid, because although the probability of a crisis outside the earth is very small, as long as it happens, it will be the real destruction for the earth and mankind.
There are also many possible threats to the earth in space, such as the impact of a large asteroid, 65 million years ago, an asteroid with a diameter of 10 kilometers hit the earth, triggering a mass extinction of living things, and dinosaurs who ruled the earth for 160 million years. Extinction disappeared. In addition, the explosion of the sun’s super energy may also cause devastating damage to human technology.
Among the threats and disasters in the universe, the gamma-ray burst is undoubtedly the most terrifying. Once it occurs, it will become a forbidden zone for life within thousands of light-years. If there are living planets in this range, gamma-ray bursts It will end, so gamma-ray bursts are also called the end of life. It is extremely unfriendly to life, as long as it encounters it, it will be merciless and harvest everything.
A gamma-ray burst is a super-strong ray that may appear when a constant star celestial body reaches the end of its life and a supernova explosion occurs, which can burst out with powerful energy in a short time. The most important thing is that it spreads very far away, even if it is more than 5,000 light years apart, it may be swept by it, which will cause huge damage to the ecological environment and even end life on the planet.
Are there many such powerful energy rays in the universe? From the perspective of the universe, there are many gamma-ray bursts. Scientists have also observed a lot of gamma-ray bursts, but they are all very far away from us, which has exceeded the scope of its damage.
But if the earth is in the range that gamma rays can harm, that is definitely very bad news for humans. So will such misfortune happen to the earth and mankind? In 1998, scientists discovered a star in the universe. Its mass is about 30 times that of the sun, and it is about 8,000 light-years away from us.
Scientists named this star WR-104. Through observations, it was found that WR-104 has reached the end of its life, and the entire star shell has been continuously expanding. According to its quality level, the end of life will usher in a supernova explosion, which is a process in which a massive star evolves into another celestial body.
Because it is far away from the earth, although scientists have discovered this star about to explode in a supernova, they do not think it will have any impact on the earth. However, in the process of observation and research, scientists increasingly felt that something was wrong with WR-104. Two phenomena have attracted the attention of scientists. One is that it rotates very fast, and the other is that one of its two poles is facing the earth. .
If a star with a fast rotating speed has a supernova, it may cause a gamma-ray burst. Such speculations scared scientists into a cold sweat. If WR-104 is just a supernova explosion, the distance of 8,000 light-years will not have an impact on the earth. But if a gamma-ray burst is triggered, it is another level of energy rays.
The power of gamma-ray bursts, even if they are 8,000 light years away, may have a bad effect on us. Scientists have established a model based on the current observational data. According to this model, the probability that it will release a gamma-ray burst at the same time as a supernova explosion occurs.
Gamma-ray bursts usually shoot out from the poles of celestial bodies, and WR-104 happens to have one pole facing the earth, which means that at that time WR-104 will transform into an “interstellar cannon” with the muzzle facing the earth. The results of such simulations scared scientists into a cold sweat. You must know that gamma rays are known as the end of life. Will life on Earth still survive by that time?
After the scientists issued a warning about this, many astrophysicists also joined the exploratory research on WR-104. Through research, scientists are also divided into two camps. One camp believes that if gamma-ray bursts have an impact on the earth, the angle between the rotation axis of WR-104 and the earth should be less than 10°. And if it is greater than 10°, a gap of tens of light-years will be created at a distance of 8,000 light-years, and the earth will be able to escape this catastrophe.
However, this result does not satisfy people. It is necessary to know that human observation technology is not particularly advanced, and the distance of 8,000 light-years will inevitably produce some observation differences. The current observation results believe that the angle between it and the earth is greater than 10°, even if a gamma-ray burst occurs, it will have no effect on the earth. But the real result may be less than 10°, so we can’t think that it has no effect on the earth and mankind. We have to plan for the worst.
If the WR-104 supernova really triggers a gamma-ray burst when it explodes and it is directly facing the earth, what should humans do? Astrophysicist Brian Thomas pointed out that if a gamma-ray burst is to have a devastating effect on the earth, the source of the burst must be within 6,500 light-years of the ball.
WR-10 is 8,000 light-years away from the earth, far exceeding the threshold of 6,500 light-years. It will have an impact on the earth, but the impact will not be as big and terrible as people think. Some scientists also pointed out that even if a gamma-ray burst 8,000 light-years away arrives on the earth, it will only cause some damage to the ozone layer. Although it will increase the ultraviolet rays on the earth for a period of time, human technology will not have much impact as long as we do a certain amount of protection.
Of course, whether this star will trigger a gamma-ray burst during a supernova explosion is still only some guesses of scientists. Even if it is determined that a gamma-ray burst will occur through more detailed and precise observations in the future, then we don’t need to worry too much. Because that is at least thousands of years or tens of thousands of years away.
At the speed of human science and technology development, as long as we give us thousands of years of development time, it may already be unavoidable to become an interstellar civilization. At that time, it will no longer be difficult to cross the galaxy. If the gamma-ray bursts brought by WR-10 will have a devastating impact on the earth, as long as we become an interstellar civilization, we can move ahead and stay away from the damage range of the gamma-ray burst.
Therefore, although the disasters in the universe are terrible, as long as human beings are strong enough in science and technology, they can deal with all dangers. And to develop to such an advanced stage, what mankind needs most is time. It has only been hundreds of years since human civilization has entered the era of science and technology, and the time is too short. It is a very remarkable thing to be able to have current scientific achievements in such a short period of time. As long as we give us more development time, mankind will not fear any cosmic disasters.