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Old 08-01-2012, 10:45 AM   #1341
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Some of the "decay" of a body occurs based on bacteria and chemical processes that the body contains all the time anyway.

I think the biggie would be the vaporization of the water content being pretty destructive to the tissues. When the water is boiled off, all sorts of wacky stuff would happen to the body.

Might be neat to try though. I can name a few peeps on this site that we could use.
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Old 08-01-2012, 12:34 PM   #1342
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If you could believe the large majority of science fiction, a dead body floating around in space would likely be nearly perfectly preserved and frozen?
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Old 08-01-2012, 01:28 PM   #1343
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Some of the "decay" of a body occurs based on bacteria and chemical processes that the body contains all the time anyway.

I think the biggie would be the vaporization of the water content being pretty destructive to the tissues. When the water is boiled off, all sorts of wacky stuff would happen to the body.

Might be neat to try though. I can name a few peeps on this site that we could use.
But those bacteria woudn't be active in space because they'd be... dead.
The water wouldn't "boil" in space, unless it's close to the sun. It's pretty frigid out there.
Even if all the water somehow "escapes"... aren't mummies pretty dried up in the desert and they "survive" for thousands of years?
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Old 08-01-2012, 01:33 PM   #1344
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But those bacteria woudn't be active in space because they'd be... dead.
The water wouldn't "boil" in space, unless it's close to the sun. It's pretty frigid out there.
Even if all the water somehow "escapes"... aren't mummies pretty dried up in the desert and they "survive" for thousands of years?
The water will definitely boil. Boiling is the result of a pressure differential, not temperature. Your innards would collapse and you would suffocate. Beyond that, as long as you didn't encounter any crazy radiation I would imagine the body would survive fairly intact.
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Old 08-01-2012, 02:28 PM   #1345
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But those bacteria woudn't be active in space because they'd be... dead.
The water wouldn't "boil" in space, unless it's close to the sun. It's pretty frigid out there.
Even if all the water somehow "escapes"... aren't mummies pretty dried up in the desert and they "survive" for thousands of years?
I'm not sure how quickly the bacteria that are deep within the body tissues will die. The exposure to low temp and pressure would certainly affect them, but maybe not immediately.

Re the boiling, yes it would. See cowmoo's post. Boiling point of water is dependent on pressure. That's why some baking instructions have "high altitude" addendum. Water boils at a lower temp in Denver than it does in LA. So cooking times need to account for the lower temp. In basically 0 pressure, water will boil to vapor, even in ridiculously low temperatures.

Didn't your HS science teacher ever mess with you by putting a glass of water inside a vacuum dome, dropping the pressure until you can see it boiling and then popping it out and dunking a student's hand in it?

So the question is, when the water inside the cells turns from liquid to gas, what happens to the cells? Can the cell walls still contain the water inside? Or will the cell walls rupture? Will the gas permeate the cell wall?

I don't know the answers to such questions. But I imagine that a body that's 50+ish% liquid water that's suddenly tossed into a vacuum where all it's water flashes to gas won't stay very intact.
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Old 08-01-2012, 02:35 PM   #1346
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I would imagine the cell would rupture, although it is only 1atm of pressure, so maybe not. Even if it doesn't, the cold would freeze you in a heartbeat.
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Old 08-01-2012, 02:37 PM   #1347
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Xcelratr, have you ever disclosed what you do professionally? Just curious.
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I don't see what is ridiculous by robbing with a sword.A sword in one od the most lethal wepon !!!

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A sword is more frightening than toy-looking gun like glock.

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Old 08-01-2012, 03:08 PM   #1348
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This seems relevant here...

http://www.damninteresting.com/outer-space-exposure/?4
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Old 08-01-2012, 03:26 PM   #1349
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I would imagine the cell would rupture, although it is only 1atm of pressure, so maybe not. Even if it doesn't, the cold would freeze you in a heartbeat.
It's interesting, because it would be a race between the low pressure trying to turn the water to gas, and the low temperature trying to turn the water to ice. Since the pressure drop would be instantaneous, while the temp drop would take a little time, I'm just assuming the pressure would win and you'd boil.

Not sure anyone is gonna volunteer for our experiment, though.

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Xcelratr, have you ever disclosed what you do professionally? Just curious.
Not much that helps here, lol.

I paid attention in Bio/Chem/Phys classes in HS. I have a BS in business. I worked in the automotive aftermarket parts biz for a long time, where I got to utilize and learn physics and some chemistry. Then I worked in banking for 8 years, and probably got stupider as far as science goes.

So take anything I post with a grain of salt. Although I do try not to speak up in situations where I don't know what the hell I'm talking about.

Does that help?
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Old 08-01-2012, 03:33 PM   #1350
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It's interesting, because it would be a race between the low pressure trying to turn the water to gas, and the low temperature trying to turn the water to ice. Since the pressure drop would be instantaneous, while the temp drop would take a little time, I'm just assuming the pressure would win and you'd boil.

Not sure anyone is gonna volunteer for our experiment, though.
Ok so after reading some and thinking about it I'm still confused. Space is fvcking cold, ~3o K, or -270o C. On the other hand, there is nothing there to transfer the heat, so I'm not sure what would happen. The air would definitely be sucked out of you and your insides would collapse, but after that I'm not sure.

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Not much that helps here, lol.

I paid attention in Bio/Chem/Phys classes in HS. I have a BS in business. I worked in the automotive aftermarket parts biz for a long time, where I got to utilize and learn physics and some chemistry. Then I worked in banking for 8 years, and probably got stupider as far as science goes.

So take anything I post with a grain of salt. Although I do try not to speak up in situations where I don't know what the hell I'm talking about.

Does that help?
Why did I think you were a mechanical engineer?
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Old 08-01-2012, 03:36 PM   #1351
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Why am I not surprised wikipedia has an entire page devoted to it?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_exposure

Short version: Boiling blood, hypoxia, eyes, mouth, anything else wet would freeze. Body would stay warm unless exposed to radiation AKA sunlight at which point it would cook.
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Old 08-01-2012, 03:38 PM   #1352
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Sub'd for science. Aerospace Engineering major here
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Old 08-01-2012, 03:40 PM   #1353
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Ok so after reading some and thinking about it I'm still confused. Space is fvcking cold, ~3o K, or -270o C. On the other hand, there is nothing there to transfer the heat, so I'm not sure what would happen.

Why did I think you were a mechanical engineer?
LOL, dunno. I am a bit of an armchair engineer. I've picked up some knowledge along the way of motion and energy and materials. Maybe my brilliant insightful answer in some other thread led you to believe I was an ME, lol.

I do have a lot of experience with car-specific physics and materials because of my former career and the amount of racing I was involved in. So when it comes to an automotive-specific subject, I'm not a complete idiot.

But compared to a real professional, I know squat.


EDIT - nice find on the wiki, will read later.
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Old 08-01-2012, 03:41 PM   #1354
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Sub'd for science. Aerospace Engineering major here
What year? I start school again in two weeks, planning on aerospace master's after a physics BS.
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Old 08-01-2012, 03:51 PM   #1355
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What year? I start school again in two weeks, planning on aerospace master's after a physics BS.
I start my freshman year this Autumn, so I don't have a "formal" education in aerospace, yet. But I've been fascinated by machines and engineering solutions since childhood; started studying engines, transmissions, diffs, etc around elemenrary school and educated myself on aerodynamics (esp in F1 and LMS) around the 8th grade. I'm really into dynamics now.

How've the Physics/Eng majors been treating you?
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Old 08-01-2012, 04:03 PM   #1356
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I start my freshman year this Autumn, so I don't have a "formal" education in aerospace, yet. But I've been fascinated by machines and engineering solutions since childhood; started studying engines, transmissions, diffs, etc around elemenrary school and educated myself on aerodynamics (esp in F1 and LMS) around the 8th grade. I'm really into dynamics now.

How've the Physics/Eng majors been treating you?
Gotcha. I have a BS in civil engineering but hate the field so I'm going back. Honestly? I failed the first physics class I took and had some difficulty in CE, but during my third year I fell in love with physics while taking a fluid dynamics class. Once I learned to see the math in everything I appreciated it and wanted to learn more. I took a few 300 level physics classes for fun and loved them. Both my fluids and standard dynamics classes were a breeze; it's all in what you enjoy. I'm itching to get back now that I know what I want to do.
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Old 08-01-2012, 04:16 PM   #1357
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Did everybody ignore my link earlier?
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Old 08-01-2012, 04:16 PM   #1358
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Gotcha. I have a BS in civil engineering but hate the field so I'm going back. Honestly? I failed the first physics class I took and had some difficulty in CE, but during my third year I fell in love with physics while taking a fluid dynamics class. Once I learned to see the math in everything I appreciated it and wanted to learn more. I took a few 300 level physics classes for fun and loved them. Both my fluids and standard dynamics classes were a breeze; it's all in what you enjoy. I'm itching to get back now that I know what I want to do.
exactly... which is why we're on this thread haha. Sounds good, thanks for the pep talk
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Old 08-01-2012, 06:50 PM   #1359
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Did everybody ignore my link earlier?
Apologies. Didn't ignore it, just never saw it, maybe cuz I was typing my post.

Great link, thanks much for posting it.

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Old 08-01-2012, 08:43 PM   #1360
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Sub'd for science. Aerospace Engineering major here
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What year? I start school again in two weeks, planning on aerospace master's after a physics BS.

To the e46F Aeros!!!
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