How to destroy The Universe: Part 1
I don’t have a part 2 ready yet; it’s just so that at some point down the road I can reuse the title and not feel shame for my lack of creativity 🙂
How can we use science and video games to destroy the Universe? Simple.. we just need that big mouth of yours! 😛
You can destroy the universe if you’re the Dovahkiin. That voice of his, which isn’t as fantastic as Fred Kennedy’s dreamy voice, is all you’d need to destroy the world.. and the Universe.. all within a few microseconds. However, first we need a history lesson. Back in a different article of awesomeness called The Biggest Boom we learned about pressure waves, explosive force, and supernovae. Well, that’s a form of energy, and energy is what your voice is producing. A pressure wave is how we hear things. This is the reason why “no one can hear you scream in space” because there’s no pressure wave travelling to beat the eardrum which we is how we hear. If you’re out in space without a space helmet however, you have other things to worry about.. but you’ll probably be screaming anyway 😛
So, what is it about shouting that causes damage? Well, like any pressure wave, be it from a shout, or an explosion, when it hits something, the energy is either bounced off (an echo) or it tears it apart and goes through it (an explosive wave). That’s a lot of energy required to destroy a building per se, but could you shout loud enough to destroy a wall? No. The problem is that you’re made of gooey bits that don’t like being put through explosive waves. If a bomb went off, and the initial fire didn’t make you have a really bad day, then the wave expanding outwards at the speed of sound (~340 metres per second at sea level) will permeate your skin, and make jello of your internal organs, and then go out the back side. On the outside, you’ll look like nothing happened, but on the inside, it looks like you were put in a comically oversized paint can shaker for a few hours. Back in World War 2, there were casualties caused from bombing runs where doctors wouldn’t even see a drop of blood on the corpses, and they had no idea how they died. Later, after autopsy, it was found out that that was the reason as to what happened. This is also why most weapons are detonated above ground level, so the pressure wave can clear out debris and cause substantially more damage. Physics isn’t always awesome unfortunately 🙁
So, back on topic, you’re Dovahkiin now suddenly.. which is awesome.. and you shout: Fus Ro Dah. What’s the first thing that happens? Well, inside your body where the vocal cords are, are shred instantly. The resulting pressure wave travels outwards in a spherical pattern, hitting your heart and lungs, collapsing them. You have an instant heart attack and can’t gasp for air. Sorry, you’re dead before your target even hears the Dah. Oh, wait, you’re invincible, right? Well, the pressure wave as it leaves your mouth is so great that a trail of fire and plasma follows behind it. It’s moving so fast, faster than the speed of sound, that the vacuum forming behind each individual wave, is also causing a larger wave to radiate off of it. This is causing substantial damage to things like the ground you’re standing on, and the air around you. It’s being moved out of the way so fast that the air itself is separating. Nitrogen is being forcibly flowed in where oxygen is being displaced out. So now you’re suffocating things within 340 metres. As soon as that pressure wave hits the person you’re shouting at, they will go flying (hey, like what happens in Skyrim!). You don’t care about that though, you started reading this article because you’re an evil mastermind in a secret volcano lair that wants to destroy the Universe.. right? Right!
Sound is measured in decibels, named after our boy Alexander Graham Bell. To put things into perspective, a mosquito buzzing about a metre away from your ear is about zero decibels. A normal conversation between two people outside is about 65 decibels. That idiot with a stupidly loud stereo booming down the street is about 100 decibels. A noise at 145 decibels can vibrate the fluid in your eye socket, 165 will cause your ears to rupture, and anything beyond 195 is no longer a sound wave, but a pressure wave (Fus. Ro. Dah.). The volcano Krakatoa erupted in 1883 at 181 decibels, and anyone within 25km ruptured their ear drums. It was said to be heard over 3000 km away! With those fun facts in mind, know that in order to destroy the entire universe, we’re going to have get louder.. much louder.
The energy required to create a shockwave large enough to engulf the entire universe (and we’re talking about beyond the observable universe bit here people..), is a measly 10 watts. With 98 more zeros tacked on to the end. I’m not about to tap that out on this keyboard here. That energy roughly converted is about 1100 decibels. That’s 478 Tsar Bomba‘s detonated at the same time, within 1/10th of a second delay between the first and last bomb. Oh I forgot.. there’s also 77 additional zeros at the end of that number (I’ll stop this soon lol).
NASA says that the total amount of energy in the entire Universe that we know about right now is 4 x 10^69 Joules of energy, and our shout just caused 1 x 10^97 Joules. That’s more than all of the energy in the Universe, so in doing that, you’d create a black hole. That black hole would be 165,300,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000km big. That’s 1.747 x 10^37 light years across. The observable universe is 93 billion light years across, our black hole is over 5 times the size of the observable universe!
Let’s further put this into perspective. The sun is 1,391,000,000 km in diameter (on average)., and if it collapsed into a black hole, it would only be about 3km in diameter. That’s a reduction of 4.64 x 10^8 reduction!