04 April, 2011

A-Z Blogging Challenge: C Stands For: Cold

There's a limit to cold.

0 Kelvin degrees (-273.15 C/-459.67 F) is absolute zero, the point where thermal energy effectively disappears, even if the kinetic energy doesn't. Matter begins to act strange at those extremely low temperatures, presenting quantum effects such as superconductivity and superfluidity. This is due to the Bose-Einstein condensate, which is a state of matter of weakly interaction bosons, within a confined external potential.

Basically, "A new form of matter at the coldest temperatures in the universe", if you'd like the explanation from the website.

Phenomenon caused by absolute zero temperatures:

Superfluidity. At temperatures very, very close to absolute zero (they have't gotten all the way down, if that's even humanly possible) matter acts as if it has no viscosity at all, and that allows it to flow literally anywhere--including up, for gravity doesn't affect things with zero viscosity.

An example of superfluid going up and over:

(SOURCE. See the liquid at the bottom? It went up and over the rim of the bowl.)

Superconductivity. This is the state of zero electrical resistance. One fascinating property of this is that if there is electricity flowing through a superconducting wire, it will continue flowing indefinitely, provided the wire stays below a critical temperature.

An example of a magnet levitating due to superconductivity (Meissner effect):


To learn more about cold, go HERE to check out the NOVA program website.




-----The Golden Eagle


Hannah Kincade said...

Very intriguing as usual. :)

jabblog said...

If I remember some of that I shall be doing well:-)

Summer Ross said...

I learn something new everyday! I didn't know a magnet could do that. :)

Holly Ruggiero said...

Very cool post, I mean very cool. ;)

Deborah Walker said...

I used (near) absolute zero in a story once. I love the extremes of phyics, strange things happen.

Siv Maria said...

Your mind works in a fascinating way and I am compelled to keep reading. Learning new ways of thinking about things is wonderful. Thank you.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Wow. My mind is reeling from all that info. :-)

Tiger85 said...

Awesome post, I love learning new facts. i'll definitely check out the nova website. Thanks. =)


Michael Di Gesu said...

Fascinating... Who would have thought. Golden, your mind is truly a wealth of information.


Old Kitty said...

I'm glad for the sun!

Cold is so amazing and scary - that supefluid thing has a mind of its own!!

take care

ali said...

You are so cool Golden. (or should I say COLD?) Thanks for helping me exercise my brain cells today!

Angie said...

Intersting! I love this kind of stuff.

Nate Wilson said...

I once knew a kid named Kelvin who was an absolute zero, always overflowing his clothes and easy to shock. And now it all makes complete sense. It was SCIENCE! :)

Thanks, Golden!

Charles Gramlich said...

These are some fascinating phenomena and they could revolutionize our ways of communication and travel

Grammy said...

Hi, I love reading new stuff, and yours is definitely new to me (well, maybe not, but it has been 45 years since I finished college, and I am sure I learned a lot of that then. thanks for the renewal of chilling facts.

the writing pad said...

I think I might be begin to act strangely at that temperature too! Intrigued by things flowing upwards in zero gravity ... V interesting post :-)
All best

Sarah McCabe said...

Really interesting stuff. Perhaps I should have taken physics back in high school after all.

Carol Kilgore said...

Thoughts? I have none about this. Way beyond what my little brain can comprehend at the moment. Right now all it wants to know is if it can have a cookie.

Anonymous said...

I love science presented in understandable language, especially because it makes it easy to imagine using it in stories. Thanks for an intriguing C-post :)

taio said...

mereu interesant

Brian said...

That was good, but made my whiskers shiver!!!

Madeleine said...

Impressive information. :O)

Tomara Armstrong said...

Wow. I had never really thought about this. Now the thoughts are churning.

M Pax said...

Excellent post. I loved reading this. :)

Jayne said...

My thoughts are mainly I should have listened more to the teachers during science so I'd have something intelligent to say right now! I really enjoyed your post (and the pics!) Thanks!

L'Aussie said...

Wow, now that I understand some of what 'cold' means could you do H for Hot in a similar way. That'd be fascinating too!


L'Aussies Travel Blog A - Z Challenge Posts

Mara Nash said...

Loved this post, and love learning something new (although I'm sure at some point I was supposed to have learned this in high school physics, but w/o a daily use for it, I didn't remember it...lol).

mist of the blossom rain said...

I was learning about superconductivity in science, it is so incredible. In fact, the second picture you posted was the one they used in my text book, LOL.:)

Laura said...

Great post-I find reading pieces like this just spark the imagination - fab!

Emma said...

Very interesting :) I love the pictures, they're absolutely mind boggling. You sound very intelligent!

Heather said...

This is really interesting! A great choice for C.

The Words Crafter said...

That's just awesome! I would have thought that at absolute zero, things would be so cold they would just be inert....who knew?!!!

I love the sciency stuff you teach us:)

li said...

I love science posts! C is for cold for me as well - a massive head cold :)

Liz P said...

Very cool! Get it? Cool?


Great post!

C. said...

I love that I learn something every time I read your blog. Its like a really interesting mini- course in everything & anything, minus the worksheets and tests ;)

Jules said...

Well this is above my grade level, please tell me come May there will be NO quiz :)
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

Lynda R Young said...

How cool!
(excuse the horrible pun..hahahaah)

Alleged Author said...

Whoa! I knew I should have studied science a bit more in college!

Pearson Report said...

I'm stumped on finding a "C" word, momentarily, that will express my amazement and bewilderment simultaneously - so cool will just have to do!

Now...next lifetime, I'm so coming back as a science mind - it truly is all mind boggling and utterly fascinating.

You write in such a way I feel like I get it - I don't really, but I feel your presentation is, well, straight forward and without a lot of extra stuff thrown in to confuse me.

And finally, you totally made my day when you said my site was worth following - thanks so very much I do appreciate it.

Smiles, Jenny

Trisha said...

Now my brain hurts! lol

Jai Joshi said...

I love watching Nova. Thanks for this post, Golden Eagle. That stuff about gravity not affecting things at zero viscosity was fascinating.


Kari Marie said...

That was a lot of science for 10 p.m.! I feel smarter just looking at the page. Very cool (pun intended).

Simon Kewin said...

I think it's fascinating. Science reveals such marvels to us.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting especially about the liquid.

laughingwolf said...

stranger than fiction... well done, ge :)

Talli Roland said...

Cool! Who knew blogging could be so educational?

....Petty Witter said...

Thanks for this post, it took me right back to my chemistry lessons.

The Golden Eagle said...

Hannah: Thanks!

Jabblog: 0 is pretty much the heart of it--0 Kelvin, that is. :)

Summer: I didn't know it, either!

Holly: LOL. Thank you! :D

Deborah: That sounds very interesting! There are so many possibilities with absolute zero.

Siv: You're very welcome! I'm glad you're enjoying my posts. :)

Shannon: Hope I didn't pack too much in there. :P

Tiger86: Thank you!

You're welcome--I hope you found something interesting there!

Michael: Well, most of it's Wikipedia and the Internet. :P

Old Kitty: That's what I thought when I first heard about absolute zero. Get me some sunshine!

It does!

Ali: LOL. :)

You're welcome.

Angie: I do, too--science has so much potential!

The Golden Eagle said...

Nate: Poor kid. :P

You're welcome!

Charles: On that line of thinking: I've heard of ways superconductivity could be used for getting electricity to homes--it's much, much more efficient than the usual metal wires, and energy could travel faster.

Ruby: You're welcome! :)

Karla: I wouldn't have thought it possible, even with zero viscosity--it's still matter, after all--but it does.

Thank you!

Sarah: Just watch NOVA. They have some awesome science programs. :D

Carol: It is complicated stuff . . . the part about liquid flowing upward and the Meissner effect I'm still a bit foggy about. :P

Madison: You're welcome! :)

Taio: Thanks!

Brian: And it made my wings shiver. ;)

Madeleine: Hope you find it useful for something--story, maybe?

Tomara: It's pretty impressive that there's a limit to cold. Definitely not something that usually comes to mind!

Margaret Hall said...

Well, I feel again that I am truly learning something new each day and especially at your blog...thanks for the information...I say "cool"...

The Golden Eagle said...

M: Thank you! I'm glad you did. :)

Jayne: You're welcome!

Denise: Here's some information on it:


Mara: I'm glad you enjoyed it!

I don't have a current use for it either--unless I get some story idea, which isn't impossible. :D

Emily: Wow. But, I guess that makes sense since it does clearly show a magnet hovering in midair. :P

Laura: Thank you!

Emma: I'm glad you liked them!

Thank you. Although, it's probably more like "nerdy", since I love science-y stuff. :)

Heather: Thanks!

The Words Crafter: Quantum effects--quanta keep throwing wild cards when it comes to expected results. :D

I'm glad you like it!

Li: I hope you feel better soon! No fun being sick. :(

Liz: LOL.

Thank you!

The Golden Eagle said...

C.: I'm glad you enjoy my posts! I love knowing that people find something in what I write. :)

Jules: Nope, no quiz! LOL.

Lynda: Thanks! ;)

Alleged: It's interesting stuff, isn't it?

Jenny: Thank you! :)

I try to make it understandable, without a lot of jargon and extra scientific words--as far as I understand what I'm writing about. Some "quantum" things still boggle my brain . . .

You're welcome!

Trisha: You may want to avoid my "T" post, then . . . just kidding! ;)

Jai: I do, too!

You're welcome!

It's such an interesting phenomenon.

Kari: Thank you! :)

Simon: It does!

Niki: Incredible the way it defies gravity, isn't it?

Laughingwolf: And perfect for fiction. :)

Thank you!

Talli: Thanks!

Tracy: You're welcome!

The Golden Eagle said...

I'm glad you find something worthwhile in my posts, Margaret. :)

Thank you!