Is there any harm from comets …

American scientists from the National Aeronautics and Space Michael Mumma found that comets emit X-ray flux, which is known to have harmful effects on living organisms, including humans.

Tailed guest

This is, in general, the expected discovery was made after studying information from space satellite «ROSAT», equipment which was designed specifically to fly past Earth comet Hyakutake.

It has long been believed that comets negative impact on the development of human civilization, and, simultaneously, are harbingers of wars, earthquakes, floods, and other social and natural disasters. In ancient times, only one kind of comets in the night sky very nervous people went crazy.

"Medieval surgeon Ambroise Pare on the comet, flying past the Earth in 1528, wrote: The star was so terrible that the mere fear of people getting sick and even die. It was a huge star the size and color of blood. At the top of it was visible condensed hand holding a long sword, the blade end of the light of three stars. rays on both sides of the comet grouped axes, knives and swords, stained with blood, and among them stood out from the horrible human face vsklochennymi beards and hair standing on end. ""

Such a vision, of course, to influence people and convince them that the apocalypse is imminent. Thank God, the end of the world yet to come, however, as stated by scientist Michael Mumma, people have learned a century ago with radiation, as even a measly dose of radiation or X-rays emanating from the comet, violate the vital activity of living organisms.

Comets are constantly received colorful descriptions in the legends and historical chronicles. "It shone daylight and dragged a tail, like a scorpion's sting," — said the chronicler of ancient Babylon on the comet in 1140 BC.

Scientific foundation for the phenomenon first tried to Aristotle. Not noticing any regularity in the appearance and movement of comets, he suggested that they consider their atmospheric flammable vapors.

Aristotle's view was generally accepted. But because of the uncertainty, the lack of consensus and explain the phenomenon of "tailed stars" of the people for a long time continued to regard them with something supernatural. Impressions from the appearance of bright comets were so strong that even the prejudices yielded enlightened people, scientists, for example, the famous mathematician Bernoulli said that the tail is a sign of God's wrath.

Brilliant astronomer Johannes Kepler spent comets special work, the Italian Giovanni Borelli and Pole Hevelius realized that comets may move not only for closed orbits, but with open paths.

Briton Edmund Halley, which is named in honor of one of the largest comets was not its discoverer, but was the first one in 1705, to understand the connection between the comet he saw in 1682, and several other reported occurrence of comets, separated from each other at intervals of 76 years.

Calculated the orbit of Halley comet series, based on a recently published theory of Isaac Newton. Noticing the similarity of the orbits of comets observed in 1531, 1607 and 1682., He predicted the return of the comet in 1758-59 years. That really happened, but after his death.

"Antikometnye" spells

Doctors claim that with the entry of comets in the solar system in humans has been a surge of mental activity, many times greater than a similar phenomenon during the full moon. Often, these mental processes are in the past cause all sorts of riots, revolutions and wars. And, to turn the emerging social cataclysm, the ancient rulers resorted to even human sacrifice.

For example, the Roman emperor Nero in 60 AD so afraid of civil unrest caused by the appearance in the sky of a heavenly body, named after Halley, that he gave to the slaughter of the richest of its citizens, not sparing with no women, no children, just to save myself.

"Many monarchs kept at their courts astrologers, defining the nature of disasters brought by tailed guests." For their false predictions, of course, is death. So, the Emperor Tiberius Astrologers drowned in the Tiber. "

Later, with the advent of Christianity, the monarchs of the sacrifices and executions forecasters refused, taking on faith the priests that from harm, accompanied by the appearance of comets, protects the ringing of temple bells, the Scriptures and church curse!

In 1453, the Turks captured Constantinople Christian, cut infidels and desecrated the temple of St. Sophia, turning it into a mosque. Three years later, in the sky there was Halley's Comet. Pope Calixtus III saw in her brightest raised over Europe Turkish scimitar.

Seeing the panic covers villages, towns and entire states, the pontiff tried to reassure his flock special "antikometnoy" prayer "Angelus", "Lord Almighty, the Turks and the comet deliver us …"

This perception of the comet remained at a later time. Prayer Calixtus III lived up to XX century and was read widely throughout Europe and even in the United States of churches in 1910, when Halley's Comet again visited the solar system, to show people in all its deadly beauty.

Yet thousands of people who are not believing in the power of church spells, said goodbye to his family and friends, go to the doctor with a request to give them the antidote to the poisonous gases that are thought to have to envelop the Earth. Pupils stay at home, adults do not go to work. Farmers were shooting lightning rods, they are not attracted to electrical discharges.

The U.S. has become a mass psychosis. Miners in Pennsylvania and working in the silver mines in Colorado refused to go down under the ground of fear of being bombarded. In Virginia and Kentucky moved people from their homes in caves to avoid the "wrath of the comet."

Thousands of residents of San Francisco, rain barrels filled with water and got into them in order to escape from the heat of the comet's tail. Residents of the houses located on the shores of large lakes, leaving them out of fear that the comet will suck air over the lake and cause huge tidal wave.

In the days of panic increased dramatically suicide, who preferred to die on their own, rather than waiting until they "roasted" comet.

In Russia, where panic about the next appearance of Halley's comet did not happen, but, nevertheless, many are also expecting the apocalyptic consequences of the clergy, to reduce the temperature of "evil spirits", distributed leaflets among the people with the following spell: "You are the devil, Satan, Beelzebub hell, do not pretend the stars of heaven, you can not hide your hvostischa bogomerzkih, for there is the tail of the stars of the Lord … "

"Character" of the comet depends on the color of its tail

Fear of comets in the past was quite understandable and justified. They were afraid because they could not find enough clear and logical explanation for this phenomenon. In fact, a clear sky — the embodiment of eternity, stability and peace. And then it comes out of a clear sky wow, bright, caudate, terrible, like nothing on earth. Why? Why? Clearly a warning about something, probably not good!

Greeks head with her hair appeared in the sky, any sufficiently bright and visible to the naked eye comet. Formed and hence the name: The word "comet" comes from the Greek "kometis", which means "hairy."

"Julius Caesar was killed in the 56-year life and was numbered among the gods, not only the words of decrees, but the conviction of the crowd, — wrote the historian Suetonius. — During the games, which in honor of the deified Julius gave the Emperor Augustus, tailed star shone in the sky seven nights in a row, being about the eleventh hour. And all believed to be the soul of Caesar, ascended into heaven. "It strengthened belief that comets come for the souls of the ruling royalty, rulers of Rome and comets were afraid."

Comet in 1456 coincided with the famine and plague epidemic that struck Europe. One hundred years later another comet before Emperor Charles scared that he abdicated the throne and locked himself in the monastery of St. Justus. Queen Elizabeth in 1580, ordered to read in the state special prayers that save from comets.

Arab astrologers, perfectly studied these celestial objects, believed that the effects of a comet depends on the shape and color of its tail, and the sign of the zodiac, in which she appeared. Tails of comets with divided into seven classes, meet two luminaries and five classical planets, it was very convenient for their interpretation.

"With the help of astrologers rulers in the past, during a routine flight over the earth comet guessing" to life and death. "Most" favorite "a celestial body of magicians and soothsayers was the same comet Halley, regularly visiting the solar system. 912 in it" Prophetic Oleg foretold death, in 1066 — Norman Conquest, and in 1378 — the Battle of Kulikovo. "

The next appearance of Halley's comet close to Earth occurred in 1607 — a period of great Russian turmoil, various political upheavals, a sea of innocent human blood and accession to the Russian throne lzhemonarhov.

"Kiev chronicler Nestor describes the Scourge of God in 1067:" … there was a sign on the west, the star privelikim rays was as if the blood, went back in the evening after solntsezakata was 7 days

It took another three hundred years, and the next bright comet, lighteneth on our horizon, "prophesied" the French invasion of Russia, led by Napoleon.

The very same Bonaparte, who believed implicitly in the heavenly signs, another comet in 1821, "foretold" death — the exiled French Emperor really died a month after her arrival.

A few decades later, "back" of the distant space travel familiar to us Halley's Comet. And soon after that first broke out in the world in the twentieth century, World War I, which claimed millions of lives.

"They are terrible, but only because of our stupidity"

In 1664, a large comet scare the people of Paris. Talking about the Flood. Wrote Russian researcher J. Golovanov, "the monks were advised not to delay the transfer of the monasteries, that such an act score? Charity in the hereafter. It seemed obvious that the days of Louis XIV numbered, but scared to death the king found the strength to encourage scholars from different countries to find out what exactly threatens the French throne, what to expect and how to defend.

Louis a few soothing words of the scientist Pierre Gassendi, who said: "Comets really terrible, but only because of our stupidity. We invent the most unselfish way things instinctive fear and, not content with their real disaster, we add to them even imagined. "

Astronomers have gathered from all over Europe and as they could, calmed the king. A comet in the meantime "prigasla", flew to Germany, and Louis XIV finally found peace of mind, and with it the entire French nation.

Of course, someone will say that to any major cataclysm occurred on Earth, you can "pull the ears" anything, including Halley's comet. But as it turns out that it was from her appearance in the solar system on the planet, to this relatively "quiet and peaceful", is something extraordinary out of the ordinary. The latest example of this — the worst in human history technological disaster — the explosion of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, which occurred almost immediately after the next visit Halley area of our planet.

"According to the calculations of astronomers, the next time Halley's comet in the solar system is expected in 2061, so we can settle down for a while. But with respect to the celestial body. Indeed there are others — no less famous and mystical. Example, Hale Bopp, one of today's "signs", predicting an end. the West, some believe that the Hale-Bopp — a dark angel sent from God to us. ""

"Span comets near the Earth in March 1997, has not passed in vain for many people. Specifically, in Rancho Santa Fe, Kalifopniya, 39 people committed mass suicide, believing that earthly creatures can be captured by a group of living beings", which are on a spaceship and travel side by side with the comet Hale-Bopp. "

And if it falls to Earth?

Another trouble that constantly threatens humanity — is if any of the comet, which appeared close to our planet, not just a fly in the sky, blazing a long tail, but also manages to fall to the Earth! Then indeed: write — gone!

Director of the Institute of Applied Astronomy of the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAH) Andrew Finkelstein at a recent press conference, the agency ITAR-TASS reported that the Institute of Applied Astronomy, a register of potentially dangerous for the future of the Earth comets and asteroids.

"He said that in the space catalog included information on more than three hundred asteroids and periodic comets may pose a risk of collision with the Earth. '"

Information base includes calculations of the orbits, the photometric parameters, information on the size, the physical properties of asteroids and comets. Separately, the data on rates of celestial bodies relative to the earth, the calculations of the potential energy of collision with our planet.

"Finkelstein said that during the day with the earth moving closer to at least one of the nearly 100,000 small planets known since the discovery of the first of them in 1801." According to him, the problem to be solved to scientists in the coming years — the definition orbits of at least 90% of all asteroids the size of a kilometer in diameter and more than that, changing the orbit can close closer to the Earth. ""

How, for example, approaching our planet asteroid Apophis, which can hit it in 2036.

"By 2029 Apophis will approach the planet at a distance of geostationary satellites, and then making a few more turns, could collide with the Earth," — he says. "

"He adds that there is a definite possibility, and if its trajectory will pass through the gates of approximately 1.5 km, then in 2036 he definitely dolbanet for us." "

Speaking about the possible means to control the asteroid and how humanity can prevent the catastrophe, Finkelstein said that funds are now ready yet, although there are different productive ideas …

Gennady Fedotov

Category: Astronomy and Space

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