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Another Expert Agrees With Dark Comet Theory

February 21, 2013 – 11:31 am | No Comment

Astronomer David Asher (from Armagh University) has agreed with Bill Napier and Janaki Wickramasinghe (Cardiff University) that “dark comets” are real and dangerous.
The following quotes are from a paper by Napier and Asher published in Astronomy & Geophysics.
http://star.arm.ac.uk/preprints/2009/539.pdf

We know that about one bright comet (of absolute magnitude as bright as 7, comparable to Halley’s Comet) arrives in the visibility zone (perihelion q<5AU, say) each year from the Oort cloud. It seems to be securely established that ~1–2% of these are captured into Halleytype (HT) orbits. The dynamical lifetime of a body in such an orbit can be estimated, from which the expected number of HT comets is perhaps ~3000. The actual number of active HT comets is ~25. This discrepancy of at least two powers of 10 in the expected impact rate from comets as deduced from this theoretical argument on the one hand, and observations on the other, is …

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Home » Supervolcanoes

Naples Supervolcano – Should It Be Drilled?

Submitted by on May 16, 2011 – 2:43 pm2 Comments

The Daily Mail has an excellent article explaining the pros and cons of drilling into the supervolcano at the edge of Naples, and why scientists are concerned:

Now an international team, including scientists from the UK, wants to drill down inside the caldera to try to better understand exactly why part of it has risen 10ft since 1969. The area at the epicentre of the swelling has seen whole streets of houses crumble and collapse. The threat is imminent. The last time the ground rose like this (between 1430 and 1538) there was an eruption that caused the formation of a new volcano.
There is just a single scientist arguing against the drilling, citing an eruption (caused by drilling) of a mud volcano, in Lusi, Indonesia. The key arguments for the drilling are:
  • The drilling will stop at two-and-a-half miles, two miles short of the magma reservoir.
  • Magma cannot come up the drill hole
  • They safely drilled an Icelandic volcano
  • It is important for monitoring purposes

UPDATE, MAY 2012 – The Mayor of Naples has approved the drilling.

2 Comments »

  • Owen Phillips says:

    Hi, I may be a layman, but it seems obvious as to why the ground is rising around a volcano. It doesn’t take a university degree to work out what would happen if you poked at a balloon with a needle so why would you drill a hole into a volcano that was swelling up. The result seems obvious? Surely these scientists can find something better to do with their time that would benefit mankind rather than playing russian roulette with a volcano. Dumb-dumb-boom. Thanks Owen

  • Allen says:

    Drilling in a volcano is kind of like poking a beehive with a stick, you won’t know how many angry bees you’ve disturbed until they swarm all around you.

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