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Artificial Stellar Evolution

  1. Mar 2, 2010 #1
    Hi there, I'm new to the forums and I came here for a specific purpose. I am not in school at the moment, but rather I am writing a science fiction novel and want to make sure that my science is as close to accurate as possible (though I understand that this may be impossible in some respects).

    If this is the wrong forum, you have my apologies :).

    1. If the evolution of our sun were to be artificially advanced - i.e. specifically if a technology was able to siphon mass from the star - would it follow standard evolution?

    Generally, the idea is that an advanced species is stealing mass from our sun in order to create another in a different part of, and a different time in, the universe.

    That Sol would become a red giant as it would naturally is a plot device in the story that forces humanity to evacuate Earth and I am hoping that such a large artificial acceleration would end in the same results, or at the very least that it could appear that it was becoming a red dwarf to those on Earth.

    To ask as simply as possible: if you were to watch the sun artificially evolve over 5 years, would it be equivalent to watching a natural 14 billion year time lapse compressed into 5 years?

    Thank you so much for your help! I am able to provide as many more details as necessary if I didn't explain myself well enough.
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 4, 2010 #2
    firstly, i would like to point out that your story is very good. the problem is that the premise of your story can be stolen by anyone reading this post. I do not mean to scare you, but what is stopping me (dont worry, i dont write science fiction) or someone from saying "holy monkey balls, that is a cool premise. i think i will write a story with such a premise". You need to be more careful when discussing material that has not been copyrighted. I would copyright your premise, and then ask for advice from the scientific community.

    Secondly, if you steal mass from the sun, i think that would mean that our sun will go through its hydrogen fuel faster, so instead of lasting another 4 billion years, it would last may 3 billion years. I suppose if the aliens were really advanced, then they could steal all the hydrogen at once, thereby causing the star to either enter a quick red giant phase or, more likely, collapse right into a white dwarf. I think the latter would be more correct.

    Good luck
  4. Mar 5, 2010 #3
    Thank you for your kind words and advice, Magnus. I'm not too worried about someone taking the idea but I suppose it's not really worth the risk, is it? So I suppose I will edit my OP.

    Your answer is essentially what I wanted to hear - it wasn't so important that it would enter a "real" red dwarf phase, but rather just that it appear as though it might, enough so that it would pose a perceived threat.

    Thanks again =)

    EDIT: Looks like I can't edit the OP so I guess I'll just have to hope that my version is better if someone steals it :). On the other hand, at least I have proof that I posted the idea at a certain time.
  5. Mar 6, 2010 #4
    Things would be different. Simulating mass loss is done in computer simulations of stars and it makes a big difference for high mass stars. Also you have binary systems which are complicated because mass can move back and forth between stars.

    What would really change the evolution of the sun is if some evil aliens started dumping helium or strange stuff in the middle of the sun. Taking mass away from the outer layers of the sun really doesn't change it very much, but if you could do something that changed the nuclear engine like put in a beam that increased the nuclear reaction rates, you could change the sun's behavior pretty quickly.
  6. Mar 6, 2010 #5
    I know some professional science fiction writers and they tend to talk a lot about their story ideas even to other professional writers, because if you talk about your ideas, then you get input from other people and you usually end up with a better story.
  7. Mar 6, 2010 #6

    Wow thank you for that, it's given me a bunch of great ideas
  8. Mar 9, 2010 #7
    Stephen Baxter did something similiar to the Sun in one of his books from flocks of creatures made of Dark matter. Increasing the Sun's age artificially happens in at least one of his books maybe even in a few of them.
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