Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Pull Me Stranger

When thinking of the forces of nature, one hardly questions their validity or their absolute effects on things in this universe. We all take comfort in the fact that if a tree falls in the woods and no one is around to hear it, at the very least we know that fucker is down for the count. How that poor, former sap(ling) goes down is actually coming into question. At least in space, that is.

Back in the 70's, we launched two probes to study Jupiter, Pioneer 10 and 11. Since then, they have been escaping our solar system, slowing down a bit from the Sun's gravity. But apparently they are slowing down a little more than expected. You can actually call it a small acceleration toward the sun.

This pioneer anomaly; as it's being called, originally I believe the scientific term was "Holy shit! What the fuck is that?", has no explanation whatsoever. Theories are as mundane as a measurement error to as extraordinary as the power of love (okay, that last one was mine).

If it's any explanation in-between, however, it could mean that our understanding of the fundamental forces of nature must change, and that life is not as simple as what goes up, must come down.

Just one more lesson on how whatever we think we know, we really have no idea.

- This post took longer than it should have, cause I douched it on my iPad.

No comments: