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Old October 10th, 2007, 11:29 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by John F Miller View Post
I ought to reveal my nerdy alter ego. For my sins, I have a PhD in physical chemistry - heavily laced with some thermodynamics. This is a very interesting thread!

The link you provided is reasonable esp regarding the comment about the temperature being warmer as you go deeper into the crust. I think the pivotal part of the equation is the about of heat tied up by the oceans. Water can absorb a lot of energy. The ocean temperature as a function of depth needs to be taken into account when determining just how much residual heat there will be in the atmosphere after the sun has set for the last time.

There are some interesting numbers in this article (try to ignore the political spin on some of it!):

http://www.oco.noaa.gov/index.jsp?sh...&nav=universal

and this one:

http://www.windows.ucar.edu/tour/lin....html&edu=high
Quite the read, I'll have a look at it soon.

So do you think the time frame should be longer... not just a few days?

Sorry if I'm misreading your post.

Mike
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Old October 11th, 2007, 08:08 AM   #47
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Hmm... so how long before things get so cold that everything shuts down. A week maybe?
I thought about this again and looked up the weather averages for Honolulu, which has about as mild a climate as you could hope for given the latitude and being surrounded by water. In their hottest month the average high is 89 degrees F and the average low is 75, with a record low of 63. So let's say the temp drops to 75 in the first 12 hours and ~60 after 24 hours, then another 10 degrees every 12 hours would put them close to freezing within three days. For dramatic effect let's say 10 degrees every 24 hours gives them several days of above-freezing temperatures, and then the weather becomes more like that of Anchorage, Alaska, which has an average low in the dead of winter of 9 degrees F. Now say they get a few days like that before slipping into polar conditions which cause most infrastructure to shut down, putting an end to the radio broadcasts and any supply of heat to your star character. As a viewer I might believe a few weeks of survivability under such a scenario, so there you go.

P.S. Enjoy filming in Honolulu... :-)
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Old October 11th, 2007, 08:55 AM   #48
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P.S. Enjoy filming in Honolulu... :-)
LOL! Thanks.

That actually sounds pretty good. I'm going to go with a base of 9 days before the basic infrastructures start to fail. A few days more and most people will be dead. I'm hoping that sounds plausible? I know, I may be stretching things a tad.

The way I look at it... the environment will gradually start to get colder, then once it gets to a certain point and the heat from the worlds natural resources has declined it will accelerate dramatically.

A least, that's what I'm probably going to run with.

I want to thank everyone for all of their help.

Mike
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Old October 11th, 2007, 09:30 AM   #49
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Kevin's scenario is definitely plausible - and prolongs the agony (good for a movie!)

It assumes that there are fuel sources to generate some heat otherwise I suspect most would perish within the first week (just think of the elderly people who die in their homes during the winter because they cannot afford the heating bills).

Now, being Hawaii, there's an extra twist - volcanoes. Talk about a good source of geothermal energy! That could make things drag on even longer. Hot spring water, hot rocks to cook the meat of the frozen carcasses of livestock and other animals...All the dead and frozen animals on the island could provide food for quite some time.

And what if the inhabitants didn't know what had happened. i.e., they all went to bed one night and the sun never came back up.....
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Old October 11th, 2007, 11:15 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by Mike Horrigan View Post
That actually sounds pretty good. I'm going to go with a base of 9 days before the basic infrastructures start to fail. A few days more and most people will be dead. I'm hoping that sounds plausible? I know, I may be stretching things a tad.
The more I think about it the more I can see it being plausible, considering that people and cities survive weeks of bleak conditions near the arctic circle in winter. Things would be bad in your scenario, but it's conceivable for the infrastructure to survive several days at least.
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Old October 11th, 2007, 11:31 AM   #51
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IMO I think if this was the case, humans would destroy themselves from greed long before they froze to death. Chaos would be evident almost as soon as news spread that there would be no sunrise... Everyone would fight over the "hot" spots on earth. Resources would be fought over by the armed and dangerous, the rest would perish almost immediately. The infrastructure of any civilized modern society would crumble instantly, who the heck is going to sit at the power stations when death is promised very soon. Knowing the sun isn't coming back is motivation enough to abandon any job and go either try to survive or have a last whooorah.

If we all behaved, I'd still only give the earth a few weeks before it froze into a solid dark iceball...
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Old October 11th, 2007, 12:49 PM   #52
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IMO I think if this was the case, humans would destroy themselves from greed long before they froze to death. Chaos would be evident almost as soon as news spread that there would be no sunrise... Everyone would fight over the "hot" spots on earth. Resources would be fought over by the armed and dangerous, the rest would perish almost immediately. The infrastructure of any civilized modern society would crumble instantly, who the heck is going to sit at the power stations when death is promised very soon. Knowing the sun isn't coming back is motivation enough to abandon any job and go either try to survive or have a last whooorah.

If we all behaved, I'd still only give the earth a few weeks before it froze into a solid dark iceball...
I have this covered as well.... :)

This sort of thing will definitely be hinted at in my movie. Making things seem even more bleak...

Mike
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Old October 12th, 2007, 06:47 AM   #53
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Mein President, we could construct huge underground shelters for the leading political and military minds....

Animals could easily be raised and SLAUGHTERED for food.... Mein Feuhrer.

Sorry, Mein President.

-inaccuately quoted from Dr. Strangelove.
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Old October 12th, 2007, 10:49 PM   #54
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Mein President, we could construct huge underground shelters for the leading political and military minds....

Animals could easily be raised and SLAUGHTERED for food.... Mein Feuhrer.

Sorry, Mein President.

-inaccuately quoted from Dr. Strangelove.
One of my all time favourite movies.

My wife doesn't get it...


Cheers,

Mike
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Old October 13th, 2007, 02:05 AM   #55
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I really think the earth would freeze too fast for people to prepare to survive such a thing...but in film, you decide how the physics of the universe operate right? ninjas could battle the cold and win!
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Old October 13th, 2007, 12:10 PM   #56
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How long do you think people could last IF:

a. They lived next to a volcano or geo-thermal vent
AND b. there was a COSTCO nearby ...

hmmm ...

Add in an REI and you might have people surviving quite a long time. Add some irony by having "An Inconvenient Truth" on sale at one of the stores.
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Old October 13th, 2007, 01:07 PM   #57
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There's a lot of science involved for the sun to "stop shining".

According to current science, the sun will eventually expand to swallow the earth then turn into a dwarf star before it "stops shining", so chances are we won't know about it when or if it does.
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Old October 13th, 2007, 01:28 PM   #58
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I read in some discussion of 'Sunshine', the idea was some sort of subatomic particle is causing the sun to 'shut down', slowly growing colder.

I forget what the particle was called (strangelet?), apparently there is some actual science behind the particle. Whether it would cause the sun to stop shining, I'm guessing that was Danny Boyle taking some license.

Of course, all sorts of implausible movies have proven to be very successful. Flesh eating zombies to superheroes, if you get the audience to care about the characters, they will be pretty forgiving of whatever the premise is.

Well, the flesh-eating zombies are real, but the superheroes, that's kiddie stuff.
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Old October 14th, 2007, 10:42 AM   #59
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There's a lot of science involved for the sun to "stop shining".

According to current science, the sun will eventually expand to swallow the earth then turn into a dwarf star before it "stops shining", so chances are we won't know about it when or if it does.
I guess you missed the religious aspect of my movie. The title and poster for this short imply that science may have nothing to do with it. I linked to it earlier in this thread. I'm just using the "science" part to determine what the effects would be if the Sun were to suddenly "stop shining".

Cheers,

Mike
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Old October 14th, 2007, 07:47 PM   #60
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another random thought....

Sometimes you have to give the audience what they THINK will happen, not what's scientifically accurate, to get them to go along.

If the sun stopped shining, I think things would get cold. I haven't a clue how long it would take. If it happened instantly, I'd say 'Nah, that's too fast.' If a century has gone by and nothing has changed, I'd say 'Nah, things would have gotten really cold by then.' If things get steadily colder over days/ weeks, ok, sounds reasonable.

As long as something doesn't totally blow your credibility, the audience ought to go along.

Of course, once the spiritual/non-scientific nature of the event is shown, well, how can anyone contradict you? The film obeys whatever you set down.
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