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Compress nothing

  1. Jan 5, 2006 #1
    Hi all,

    I was wondering what would happen if one had a whole lot of nothing, and he would try to compress that. So, you have a space with nothing, you reduce the space, but keep the contents. What contents would emerge from that? And how much space would you need to get something?

    Kind regards.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 5, 2006 #2

    Your question made my head explode. I'm going to cheat and say that unless someone invents something akin to a Faraday cage for gravitational waves it's impossible to have a box with "nothing" in it.
  4. Jan 5, 2006 #3


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    That is non sequitur. If the space is empty then it has no contents.
  5. Jan 5, 2006 #4
    Well, then make it a thought experiment o:) Well, maybe a related question would be 'what can emerge from nothing'?
  6. Jan 5, 2006 #5
    That would imply, I think, that 'nothing' has no contents, nothing can emerge from 'nothing', and that compressing it has completely no influence on anything in its environment?

    And furthermore, if you would have a place A with nothing, and a place B with compressed nothing, would you notice anything difference if you go from A to B?

    And, the last one, what would happen if you would continue compressing?

    Just a few thoughts, maybe I'm way off :blushing:
  7. Jan 5, 2006 #6
    The only thing i know that can emerge from nothing are some very small sub atomic particles and only for an instant. I would have to say that when you compress a vacuum the only thing acomplished is filling the vacuum.
  8. Jan 5, 2006 #7


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    If you put a compressor or vacuum pump of some sort into outer space and turned it on, it would just spin. It would not create any pressure unless a stray molecule or atom happened by and went into it. I suppose if enough molecules went it it might eventually build up some pressure, but you need some sort of matter to do that. Without matter, pressure can't increase.
  9. Jan 5, 2006 #8


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    This is not a "thought experiment", it is just playing with words. What did you mean by "nothing" and "content" in the original post?
  10. Jan 5, 2006 #9


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    Holy Smokes that is a difficult one. How can you already compress a vortex?
  11. Jan 5, 2006 #10


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    You also can't have a vortex unless something is there, and that something has to have angular momentum to form one.
    The only way that I can make any sense of the initial question is to think that Wave! wants to force the vacuum fluctuations of a large volume into a smaller one, to create a 'denser' cloud of virtual particles. I don't think that it can be done. If it could, though, you'd have yourself one awesome little spontaneous antimatter bomb. :bugeye:
  12. Jan 5, 2006 #11
    If "nothing" implies the space then compressing it would be like something happeneing at the center of a black hole as it is believed "churning the space time"- if i am not mistaken. You can expect to see some gravitation related effects may be some anti-particle ......
    But if the "nothing" just means nothing, you might have NOTHING
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