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Apophis

Space Talk Blog - Scott Mansfield

Archived for posterity Posts tagged: #blackhole #beckycross #crossanomaly


06 JUL 2031 - 20:00 UTC

Many thanks to my supporters for another amazing Astro-Con! I'll get the prizes for the raffle winners sent out as soon as I have time to settle back in here. A very special thanks to Dr. Becky Cross for her talk on recent ground based telescope anomalies, it truly was the highlight of the con for me! And on that note, a little space news related to those anomalies. There was enough interest generated by Dr. Becky's talk that NASA has granted time on the Spitzer Space telescope to try and isolate the cause of the anomaly, so hopefully we'll hear more on that soon.

12 AUG 2031 - 17:20 UTC

As you probably already know if you follow my blog, NASA held a conference today about what is being called the Cross Anomaly. Some mainstream news outlets are even picking up the story now, and if you have seen that coverage, let me be the first to say: No. It's not aliens. What NASA said was just that it is not believed to be an error in the observing devices. They are not prepared to speculate on what it is, and nor should anyone else with even less information. So don't put too much stock in all of the armchair scientists claiming that this could be dark matter, or black holes. Just wait for NASA to release their report, and then we can all lose our minds about it together. An exciting upside to all of this is that friend of the Blog Dr. Becky Cross, has been appointed lead investigator, so hopefully we'll get the inside scoop as this unfolds!

18 SEP 2031 - 06:40 UTC

I'm very sorry to have been silent this past month, especially with the rampant speculation, and the ominous scheduled press conferences from NASA, FEMA, and the White House, but as you surely know by now... the Cross Anomaly is in fact a rogue black hole. I received information on this some time ago, but out of respect for my source, I was unable to talk about it. Now that the word is out, I can tell you what I know. NASA and other space agencies around the world are still attempting to work out exactly which galaxy it was ejected from, the best lower bound estimate at this point is about 2 billions years ago, it was the galactic center of a smaller galaxy. That galaxy probably collided with a larger galaxy, and during the collision, this black hole was ejected. It's been sailing through the inter-galactic void ever since. Which is why, even though it is quite large, about 100 million solar masses, any gravitational lensing was not apparent until recently. Unfortunately for us, this rogue black hole is heading toward our Solar System. More details about this will be released tomorrow in the series of press conferences. I'll fill you in where I can since I know my readers will want more scientific rigor than those conferences will give.

19 SEP 2031 - 12:00 UTC

Ok, so there was a lot of fluff in those press conferences, but the facts they laid out are accurate. The rogue Black Hole, (I refuse to use their moniker for it, Dr. Cross does not deserve to be associated with this event in this way) is indeed on a close intercept with our star. And that will have catastrophic consequences for our solar system. The specifics of its intercept will be released by NASA in a few days, so we can wait to talk about that, and analyze just how badly it will disturb our orbit. But the fact is that we are in a pretty narrow habitable zone around our star, and even small disturbances toward the center or out to the edge of that zone will have massive repercussions on our climate and thus, our biosphere.

21 SEP 2031 - 14:30 UTC

Now we know why the space agencies had been so tight lipped about the trajectory of the black hole. It's not just a close approach, it's going to pass right through the inner solar system. There are many different models at the moment as getting an exact position and velocity for a black hole traveling at low, but still relativistic speeds is quite difficult. But they all agree on two things:

  1. As of today, the black hole has passed within the apogee of Pluto's Orbit.

  2. Although estimates vary widely, it will pass within several AU of Sol (with fairly large error bars on these trajectories).

There are conferences going on from every organization imaginable throughout the day today, but be wary of which you listen to, there's loads of misinformation out there. NASA's conference today on mitigation strategies is the one to watch. I'll fill you in on my take on it after it ends in a few hours.

21 SEP 2031 - 18:00 UTC

That was fascinating. If I may, let me sum up those three hours, and then maybe read between the lines. What their plan amounts to, though the ends may have seemed obfuscated due to the technical detail they went into at each stage of the plan, is essentially turning the earth into a space ship. They want to create deep, self sufficient bunkers, that can survive significantly violent events in both temperature, and mechanical stresses. But the absolutely insane technical specs they were discussing leads me to one conclusion: We are on track for a very close approach with the black hole, one that may render the planet uninhabitable, and these bunkers are meant to support colonies of people, on a planet with no biosphere, or even atmosphere. Call me an alarmist, call me a doom-sayer. But I think that's the real objective behind this bunker program.

22 SEP 2031 - 13:00 UTC

I hope you all caught my discussion with Dr. Cross about the latest estimates released on the black hole's position and velocity. Isn't she just the best for giving her time for us to ask questions? Anyway, starting some time around the beginning of this month, the outer planets in our solar system which are on the side facing the black hole, came under the sphere of influence of the black hole, rather than of Sol. This is really striking news, and this will give us the first concrete evidence to track. Over the next several months we will be able to watch as their orbits peel off of their normal trajectories, and begin to fall towards the black hole. This is really astounding to think about, but any doubt that we've seen in the media about this actually happening will be dispelled as we begin to track these orbital deviations.

05 DEC 2031 - 12:00 UTC

There is no doubt now, Jupiter's orbit is incontrovertibly deviating from its nominal path. Honestly, I feel relieved. I think NASA's bunker program will finally get the full resources it deserves. There is a press conference tomorrow to inform the public on the progress so far. In other news Dr. Cross will be visiting Seattle this weekend and we plan to meet up for another in person podcast, and discuss what's going on, so stay tuned for that!

10 DEC 2031 - 12:00 UTC

I apologize for no podcast this past weekend, Becky and I did not have time to get one recorded, but we did discuss many incredible things, and I will try and write up some posts about our discussions in the coming weeks.

01 APR 2032 - 12:00 UTC

My earlier fears that the world would not take this seriously have proven false. Now that the UN has established the office of Bunker Program Coordination (OBPC), every nation in the world is establishing their own national bunker program. NASA donated their designs to the UN office, and they are being shared with any organization that wants them. As was just announced today, NASA's program is now: The North American Bunker Program. And the resources being devoted to this program in particular are truly prodigious. I've seen it likened to 100 Apollo projects in mainstream media. That's not quite right, Apollo at its height accounted for about 2% of annual GDP, which would mean this project was 200% GDP, and that obviously is not the case. Current estimates released by the OBPC projects it to cost around 25% of the USA's GPD this year. With Canada and Mexico contributing further resources, not yet quantified. In exciting news for fans of the blog, friend of the blog Becky Cross, will be moving from NASA to the UN's OBPC to help the rest of the world with their projects.

13 JUN 2032 - 12:00 UTC

Things are moving fast now! But maybe too fast. While there are many credible bunker programs out there, don't be fooled my dear readers! "Converting" an old gold mine, or digging a bunker in your backyard, is nowhere NEAR sufficient! NASA's published spec indicated a median depth of half the thickness of the earth's crust in your area. In the US that's about 40 miles thick, which means the median depth of your bunker must be, wait for it... 20 MILES deep! So no, covering your swimming pool and calling it a bunker does not count. Additionally, it must be located in a seismically stable region, which is why there are no bunkers being planned anywhere on the West coast of the US for example. The current prime candidates in the US are: Minnesota, North Dakota, and Southern Texas. So please stop buying into private bunkers in your home towns, they are worse than snake oil.

17 NOV 2032 - 12:00 UTC

Jupiter has left the solar system. To be exact, its orbital trajectory hit an inflection point, and it is now heading away from the planets of the inner solar system. The UN's Body of Black Hole Observations released new data today on the position and velocity of the Black Hole, or should I say Apophis, since that seems to be the name that has stuck in popular culture. Never mind that we already had an asteroid named that, but I digress. If these numbers are right, things are going to start to move quickly here. Becky told me that the various bunker programs around the world were caught somewhat off guard by the new estimates, and they are now initiating a crash program to ready the bunkers in time by any means necessary. Reading between the lines here: there is about to be a lot of corner cutting in the construction of these vessels.

01 JAN 2033 - 12:00 UTC

New years. Everyone knows what the means: the last year. I just wanted to post a quick update about the bunker selection process. Yes we all know there isn't enough room for everyone, not by a long shot. And yes there's all sorts of conspiracy theories about the selection criteria. I'm not here to defend any of that. But I am here to defend the UN OBPC's decision to not announce their selections until just before the event. If it were announced far ahead of time, society would fall apart. I mean more than it already is. People would be killed for their spots, people who weren't picked would give up, and we can't do that, not with the bunkers still so far from completion. So stay strong my readers, they are doing the best humanity can.

01 JUN 2033 - 12:00 UTC

This is a somber post for me to make. We've all had three years to get our get our heads around what's going to happen to our solar system, but it hasn't made it any easier. I was indeed selected for one of the Minnesota Bunkers (though we have been told not to reveal which one) and am now residing in it. I know that is cold comfort to any who were not selected, and I'm at a loss of words for you. All I can say is I will try to continue with what I've always done, trying to engage the world in science, and I hope that will be of some help, or at least comfort, to know what is happening as it happens.

16 JUN 2033 - 09:00 UTC

It's here. The black hole has entered the inner solar system (no matter how you define that, it's impossible to deny now). Tomorrow at 01:30 UTC Mars will make its closest approach as it slingshots around the back of the black hole. It's hard to say exactly what will happen, but some internal estimates provided to me by Becky indicate that it will be a very close approach. Potentially even inside the Roche limit of the black hole. We'll see.

17 JUN 2033 - 19:00 UTC

Mars is entering its final descent toward the black hole now. Observation will be difficult until it exits out the other side. We know it'll be moving very quickly, but it's hard to say exactly what will happen. I will keep you updated.

20 JUN 2033 - 19:00 UTC

Mars has finished its close approach around the back of the black hole, it was closer than even our closest estimates, we're still collecting data, but early numbers indicate that it experienced somewhere in the vicinity of 600 PetaWatts of heating from tidal forces. Observation was difficult due to the extreme gravitational lensing, but what could be seen and corrected for, along with simulations that the UN's Office of Black Hole Observation (OBO) is running indicate that as Mars began its sling shot around the black hole, surface temperatures reached over 5000f, turning the surface to lava. As it began to exit the closest part of the approach, the tidal forces overcame its gravitational cohesion, and it was ripped apart. What we're seeing now is essentially a shotgun blast of molten debris heading away from the black hole at nearly relativistic speeds. I know. This is terrifying. You could hear a pin drop in all of the bunkers right now. Even though the worst estimates have us passing much further from the black hole, it's hard to imagine we'll come out of this alright.

25 JUN 2033 - 19:00 UTC

As has been widely reported for the last several weeks, Earth is indeed still in Sol's sphere of influence. But that is missing the larger point. Sol itself is now, and has been for a while, in the black hole's sphere of influence. And today, we have irrefutable confirmation that our system, Sol, Earth, Mercury, Venus, have begun our final plunge towards the black hole. As with Mars before us, things are going to begin to move quickly from this point on. Starting with this post, I will be including the OBPC's average surface temperature and tidal heating readings for our planet.

Tidal heating: 3.7 TW Surf Temp: 72f

27 JUN 2033 - 19:00 UTC

Our system is accelerating toward Apophis, and today we have the first readings on the affects of our approach, as we begin to move into the sling shot around the black hole, we will experience greater and greater tidal forces, much like the forces experienced by the end of a whip. This will cause truly massive seismic disturbances. But the main bunkers were built with that in mind. However there is a larger problem. As is apparent in the last few days, our orbit around Sol will be massively disturbed. We will fall under the sphere of influence of Apophis, and be pulled toward it, instead of around Sol. The good news is that earlier estimates that we may be pulled into Sol itself have been corrected with new information. We will stay clear of our home star, but not by a lot. As Sol dives towards its sling shot behind Apophis, we will pass behind Sol, on our way to our own sling shot around Apophis. And that is our biggest danger. As we approach Apophis, we will make a close approach to Sol, in just over 24 hours we will pass so close to Sol, that it is expected to burn off most of our atmosphere. I know this isn't exactly new information, especially for my readers, but this is no longer an estimate or a guess, we are quite sure of this now.

Tidal heating: 166 TW Surf Temp: 72f

28 JUN 2033 - 14:00 UTC

We are diving down toward Sol now. Expect Tidal forces to increase greatly, as we have already seen today with the earthquakes across the planet. Becky is sending me up to the minute sensor readings from her Bunker in Siberia. She is in perhaps the safest region in terms of seismic activity, so we can rest easy knowing she will continue to send us data. The greatest threat is still the heating we will begin to experience starting tomorrow from thermal radiation as we dip close to the star.

Tidal heating: 309 TW Surf Temp: 72f Average Atmospheric Pressure 1.0Atm

29 JUN 2033 - 01:00 UTC

Final approach now, godspeed my fellow travelers. I will transmit again if any of us make it out the other side.


Automatic Bunker Sensor Array System

Significant event detected, sensor readings marked for further analysis.

Event Duration: 26 hours

30 JUN 2033 - 14:00 UTC - Sensor Reading

Tidal heating: 7 PW Surf Temp: 252f Average Atmospheric Pressure 1.26Atm

30 JUN 2033 - 21:00 UTC – Sensor Reading:

Tidal heating: 6.6 PW Surf Temp: 492f Average Atmospheric Pressure 0.95Atm

30 JUN 2033 - 22:30 UTC - Sensor Reading:

Tidal heating: 6.4 PW Surf Temp: 1,500f Average Atmospheric Pressure 0.723Atm

01 JUL 2033 - 01:00 UTC - Sensor Reading:

Tidal heating: 6.4 PW Surf Temp: 1,700f Average Atmospheric Pressure 0.6Atm

01 JUL 2033 - 03:00 UTC - Sensor Reading:

Tidal heating: 4.2 PW Surf Temp: 1,660f Average Atmospheric Pressure 0.6Atm

01 JUL 2033 - 14:00 UTC - Sensor Reading

Tidal heating: 1.71 PW Surf Temp: 1,350f Average Atmospheric Pressure 0.6Atm

01 JUL 2033 - 16:00 UTC - Sensor Reading

Tidal heating: 1.71 PW Surf Temp: 1,100f Average Atmospheric Pressure 0.6Atm

Surface conditions now suitable for antenna deploy.

Bunker communication reestablished.


01 JUL 2033 - 18:00 UTC

We're alive! Many bunkers are still off the net which is to be expected. Our sensor network is still collecting what data it can as bunkers come back online. We're still waiting for Becky's bunker to connect as it had some of the most extensive sensors in the network, but what we can see now is devastating. As we made our closest approach the oceans boiled away, nearly flash boiled in places. Much of the gas was energetic enough from the thermal heating and tidal forces, that it managed to escape our gravitational influence. Our measurements appear to be showing it stabilizing at around half of our original density 0.6ATM. The story with the surface is worse however. All life outside of our bunkers has been incinerated. Although on average the surface temperature was not high enough to liquefy the crust, many places around the planet due to the geometry, geography, or other factors, did in fact liquefy. There are currently fields of lava around the globe, slowly cooling. We do expect that from the higher heating, and massive seismic disturbances experienced, several of the less well prepared bunkers around the world may not have survived. I will strive to keep you updated.

Tidal heating: 1.70 PW Surf Temp: 1,000f

02 JUL 2033 - 19:00 UTC

Our main bunker telescope array is partially back online, just in time to watch Mercury make its closest approach to Apophis. It passed closer than we will, but not as close as Mars. Its surface liquefied early this morning, and it appears that the planet is beginning to fall apart in large chunks. Tomorrow is our turn. Let's hope the models are right and we've already seen the worst of it.

Tidal heating: 1.90 PW Surf Temp: 750f

03 JUL - 05:00 UTC

This is it. We've begun our dive toward Apophis. Our planet had begun to stabilize from our pass by Sol. The ocean beds are perfectly dry now, the last remnants of deep pools having evaporated due to the surface temperature and low pressure. But the fields of Lava have mostly solidified now. I've been lending my time to the communications team here in my Bunker, trying to establish communication with more bunkers. Very few have come back online it turns out. Becky's is still offline.

Tidal heating: 331 TW Surf Temp: 435f

04 JUL 2033 - 04:00 UTC

Today is the day we sling shot around Apophis. Everyone is running around like mad trying to finish repairs. Many more major seismic evens are expected. I'm still working on the communications problems. Everyone else seems to have given up.

Tidal heating: 2.54 PW Surf Temp: 435f

04 JUL 2033 - 11:00 UTC

Things are really falling apart here, we've been hit by major earthquakes just about every hour today. Levels 43-72 are out of communication, possibly destroyed. I don't know if I'll be able to post again. Good luck to anyone who receives this.

Tidal heating: 4.5 PW Surf Temp: 313f


Automatic Bunker Sensor Array System:

04 JUL 2033 - 21:00 UTC

Closest Approach to rogue Black Hole, 1.2 AU

Tidal heating: 6.58 PW Surf Temp: 331f


03 JUL 2033 – 07:00 UTC

[Internal Bunker Communication] Power is back online, but we have no connection with the remaining bunkers. We have no idea who else survived. We managed to get our telescope online just in time to watch Sol make its closet approach, sling-shotting behind Apophis as we did, its Chromosphere being torn away in brilliant and violent arcs and spews. The stars luminance is going crazy, massive solar flares, followed by historic minimums. However this beautiful violence is of no danger to us. We are on our own now. Our sling shot around Apophis has granted us escape velocity from itself, and our sun. In fact as far as we are able to tell right now, every planetary body of our original solar system is now a rogue planet. Sailing off on their own into the darkness of space. Apophis has done its work on us and is now heading off on its own path. I haven't slept in days. I'm going to head back down to communications and try to help get our array back online, I have to talk to the other bunkers.

Tidal heating: 5.55 PW Surf Temp: 300f

09 JUL 2033 - 02:00 UTC

[Internal Bunker Communication] We're truly on our own now. We're just about 1AU from Sol and speeding away. Planetary heating from both solar radiation and tidal forces will continue to drop from here on out.

Tidal heating: 55.4 TW Surf Temp: 216f

12 JUL 2033 - 15:00 UTC

[Internal Bunker Communication] Everyone including myself is busy with repairs to the silo, so I'll keep this brief. Surface temps have finally fallen below 100f for the first time since our close approach with Sol. We expect the temperature to continue dropping as we move further away from our star.

Tidal heating: 15.3 TW Surf Temp: 98f

16 JUL 2033 15:00 UTC

[Internal Bunker Communication] As the temperature finally begins to drop outside, clouds are beginning to form from the evaporated oceans. They are raining back down into the ocean beds from where they came, but even when this process is complete, there is far less water than there used to be on our planet. This rain will barely fill the deepest canyons, still leaving most of the ocean beds dry.

Tidal heating: 7.4 TW Surf Temp: 42f

16 JUL 2033 17:00 UTC [Internal Bunker Communication] We're seeing a precipitous drop in temperature today, we think a lot of coincident heating effects are beginning to cool off all at once. We are far enough from Sol now that both radiation and tidal heating is becoming insignificant. The crust of the earth as well is cooling more rapidly due to our drastically reduced atmosphere.

Tidal heating: 6.2 TW Surf Temp: 28f

20 JUL 2033 12:00 UTC

[Internal Bunker Communication] Since the temperature stabilized on the 16th, it's been hovering around 15f. Surface cameras show a very dim world. Something similar to dusk, but at the brightest part of the day.

Tidal heating: 1.6 TW Surf Temp: 15f

15 AUG 2033 - 05:00 UTC

Tidal heating has dropped below 1TW for the first time today. Things are going to get colder. In the first bit of good news in a while, we have re-established all of the major functions of our silo, and even redeployed our network array. Two other bunkers are online. This is probably the extent of the surviving bunkers though. Each bunker has a broadcast system to let the rest of the network know if major functions have been compromised. Most of the other bunkers are transmitting critical failures. All of the Siberian bunkers have failed. There is no one left there.

Surf Temp: 16f Tidal heating: 933GW

15 SEP 2033 - 12:00 UTC

The only significant heat remaining is our molten core, that will cool slowly for a very long time.

Surf Temp: 9f Tidal heating: 52.6GW

03 DEC 2033 – 12:00 UTC

Glaciers have crossed the Canadian border today.

Surf Temp: 0f Tidal heating: 8GW

03 JUN 2034 – 12:00 UTC

As far as we can tell, the earth is officially an ice ball again, for the first time in 635 million years.

Surf Temp: -34f Tidal heating: 30MW

24 DEC 2034 – 03:00 UTC

I must end my transmissions as of today. Our base is diverting the majority of its energy to heating from here on out. With the total system failure in Brazil-02, there is only one bunker left besides us. We will go on as long as we can. But this is the end for me. It has been the privilege of my life to help inform you on what was happening to our world. But I can't find the will to face you, or anyone anymore. We must pass into this cold dark night, each of us alone, as our planet now is. Good night.

Surf Temp: -42f Tidal heating: 258 KW