Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

I want to pour a Sol sized bucked of water on the sun

  1. Dec 17, 2014 #1
    So I don't feel as freaked out as I did before reading the Tips sticky about making sure every bit of science is plausible. I would like to try and keep it believable for the immersion though.

    http://gizmodo.com/could-the-sun-be-extinguished-by-a-bucket-of-water-just-1669914928

    It all started with this article. My brain ran away with the idea of our solar system flying through a super massive cloud of water vapor or ice on it's journey round the galaxy. I suppose it's a given that the cloud is vast and not dense enough for it to form its own star. But there is enough to add significant mass to the sun eventually.

    My main hurdle is I am not sure if an interstellar cloud of anything would breach the suns bow wave and heliopause.
    If there were enough mass would parts of a super massive cloud be able to breach the system?

    I plan on having some fun with this like exploring mass added to some planets in the system, including earth.

    Thanks to anyone who takes time to post on this.

    Cheers!
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 17, 2014 #2

    Bystander

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member
    2016 Award

    Calculate the energy released per kilogram accreted by the sun.
     
  4. Dec 18, 2014 #3

    Bandersnatch

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    I can't help with an answer, but let me clarify the question for other posters:

    It's asking whether it's possible for interstellar medium to accrete onto an active star against the pressure of its stellar wind.
    The title is just a metaphor.
     
  5. Dec 25, 2014 #4

    mfb

    User Avatar
    2016 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    With sufficient density: sure. Especially for neutral particles.
     
  6. Jan 16, 2015 #5

    DHF

    User Avatar

    Is Earth's survival a factor in your scenario? If the ice cloud is dense enough, moving towards the Sol system with sufficient relative velocity, then Earth is likely to experience something similar to the late heavy bombardment period as trillions of comets moved through our system.
     
  7. Jan 16, 2015 #6
    I guess a sufficiently dense cloud of vapor would push through the bow wave like tissue paper.
     
  8. Mar 20, 2015 #7

    CalcNerd

    User Avatar
    Education Advisor
    Gold Member

    If a star were to splash into a large sol sized water droplet, it would be like adding gasoline to a fire. Chemical bonds are insignificant in comparison to nuclear fusion ie H2O bonds would be destroyed and the H2 would instantly become new fuel for the star (as would the Oxygen, but the Oxygen wouldn't have nearly the energy contribution, but would likely shift the color of the star as well). We would likely see the star increase in size and fuel consumption and end its life on a much shorter scale due to the larger the star, the even larger its energy consumption.
     
  9. Mar 20, 2015 #8

    Bandersnatch

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    @CalcNerd that's not the question being asked here, though.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook