2012 Apocalypse and Two Suns?


Please...someone tell me that this is a joke, a hoax, pseudoscience...

I invite perspectives from astronomers, physicists, etc.

According to The Huffington Post:

According to Prof. Brad Carter, Senior Lecturer of Physics at the University of Southern Queensland:

for at least a few weeks, we'd see a second sun, Carter says. There may also be no night during that timeframe.

The report explains:

But doomsday sayers should be careful about speculation on this one. If the star does go super-nova, Earth will be showered with harmless particles, according to Carter. "They will flood through the Earth and bizarrely enough, even though the supernova we see visually will light up the night sky, 99 per cent of the energy in the supernova is released in these particles that will come through our bodies and through the Earth with absolutely no harm whatsoever," he told news.com.au.

In fact, a neutrino shower could be beneficial to Earth. According to Carter this "star stuff" makes up the universe. "It literally makes things like gold, silver - all the heavy elements - even things like uranium....a star like Betelgeuse is instantly forming for us all sorts of heavy elements and atoms that our own Earth and our own bodies have from long past supernovi," said Carter.

UPDATE: To clarify, the news.com.au article does not say a neutrino shower could be beneficial to Earth, but implies a supernova could be beneficial, stating, "Far from being a sign of the apocalypse, according to Dr Carter the supernova will provide Earth with elements necessary for survival and continuity."

I am skeptical.


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Betelgeuse is around 640 light years away. If it started to go supernova tomorrow, we would certainly not see the effects of it by 2012.

By cavanaugh (not verified) on 22 Jan 2011 #permalink

But, Cavanaugh, if it started to go supernova 639 years ago, we would not know until next year.

The fact that this was on the Huffington Post is all you need to know in order to conclude it's garbage. To be fair to professor Carter, as Phil Plait points out (emphasis added)

Whatâs worse, the HuffPo article attributes the date to Dr. Carter himself, but in the original article he never says anything about it; the connection is all made by the article author.

Point taken, but I would not suggest painting The Huffington Post with such a broad brush. After all, I am a regular HuffPost blogger :); although, every reader is welcome to his/her opinion. I have read many well researched articles on HuffPost, although I suspect that this "two suns" posting is not one of them.

"oint taken, but I would not suggest painting The Huffington Post with such a broad brush. After all, I am a regular HuffPost blogger :);"

I readily admit to that point evading me. Still, I have no faith at all in HP's general science coverage. Possibly too harsh, but their history of discussion of vaccines does not give them a good reputation (no does the other woo coverage).

The huffington post- hardly an authority on the subject!

By office furniture (not verified) on 27 Jan 2011 #permalink