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Re: Hydrogen fusion killed the dinosaurs?



In article , Michael Simpson wrote:
> To hear Aldo Aulicino, you?d think this was not so far-fetched. He believes
> we had them here first ? as long as 65 million years ago.
> 
> Aulicino, a Canadian-born, self-taught researcher, has produced a brand new
> theory, after what he says has been seven years of probing, to explain why
> all our dinosaurs disappeared back then.
>
       I recall reading this brand-new theory, and enjoying it, in a science 
fiction anthology over 20 years ago.
       
> These smart lizards, Aulicino concludes, were working 65 million years ago
> at taming hydrogen fusion ? the kind of reaction that makes hydrogen bombs
> go off and that keeps the sun burning. But they goofed and blew themselves
> up. The bang was big enough to make a cloud of dust that shut out sunlight
> long enough to freeze all kinds of life forms.
>
       Where's the crater?
       Where's the explosion ejecta?
       What isotopic signatures does he predict for the re-impacted debris? I 
would think off the top of my head that a violent run-away of a fusion 
reactor would result in high (if brief) neutron fluxes, so I'd predict an 
excess of neutron-rich species in the stable isotope profile for the ejecta. 
But I'm not a nuclear physicist, so I'll defer to one (do any of the 
academics here know a nuclear physicist who they can ask over lunch on 
Monday) on that. 
       
> But a few of these smart dinosaurs, he figures, fled to the ocean, which
> would hold its heat longer than the land, and they jumped in.
>
       This is directly contradicted by the observed fossil history of the 
Cetacea. As well as by their ankle bones and blood. Since this developing 
story has been one of the "poster children" of palaeontology for the last 25 
years, then either Aulicino is deliberately writing a fiction (see my 
previous comment about enjoying dinosaur SF, even that East of Eden dreck by 
the Harry 'Rattus ferroinoxidans' Harrison), or has been living in a barrel 
for the last 25 years.
       
> I have found no dinosaur expert who thinks much of this idea, or who
> believes any of the dinosaurs were mammals.
>
       I think it's a good basis for an interesting SF story. It shouldn't 
exceed Dodgson's "six impossible things before breakfast" credibility limit, 
so there's a reasonable chance of it being more entertainment than the 
average quantum cryptanalysis paper (which typically require 10 or even 12 
pre-prandial impossibilities). 
       
> But not to worry. We
> can handle it because we?re smarter than any lizards ever could have been.
> Right??
>
       I've seen "2 Million Years BC" - you'll never convince me that a stone 
age race with TB vaccination could ever be eaten by a 40m long chameleon.
       
-- 
 Aidan Karley,
 Aberdeen, Scotland,
 Location: 57°10' N,  02°09'  W (sub-tropical Aberdeen), 0.021233
 Written at Sat, 16 Jul 2005 10:35 +0100



        
        
                
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