Jump to content




Welcome to Unexplained Mysteries! Please sign in or create an account to start posting and to access a host of extra features.


- - - - -

Does space smell?


  • Please log in to reply
117 replies to this topic

#31    MID

MID

    Forum Divinity

  • Member
  • 14,490 posts
  • Joined:06 Aug 2005
  • Gender:Male

  • ...The greatest error is not to have tried and failed, but that in trying, we did not give it our best effort.

Posted 18 September 2007 - 10:37 PM

Quote

Good point. I've often wondered why an astronaut hasn't lifted up his visor and taken a good sniff.



Because he or she  can't Billy...please refer to explanation provided.



#32    She-ra

She-ra

    ~♥ Princess Of Power ♥~

  • Member
  • 10,859 posts
  • Joined:23 Jun 2007
  • Gender:Female

Posted 18 September 2007 - 10:40 PM

Quote

Because he or she  can't Billy...please refer to explanation provided.


I think he's joking Mid. He knows his head would get sucked off or collapse or something really scary yes.gif original.gif Jody


Posted Image


#33    MID

MID

    Forum Divinity

  • Member
  • 14,490 posts
  • Joined:06 Aug 2005
  • Gender:Male

  • ...The greatest error is not to have tried and failed, but that in trying, we did not give it our best effort.

Posted 18 September 2007 - 10:44 PM

Quote

Now, of course we all know space doesn't have any air.. but astronauts are fit. So, I'm sure they could hold their breath longer than the average person.
So, while holding their breath.. one could, quickly take a quick sniff. Just a really quick one mind!
And report back..to Houston describing what spaces smells like... before he/she...suffocates or maybe explodes.
It can be done... we just need the right people made of the right stuff!



Astronauts are generally fit, but not any more than any other fairly fit human  (i.e., we don't see any fat astronauts, but otherwise, they're pretty normal folks).
The ability to hold one's breath has no bearing on smelling.  In fact, holding one's breath prohibits smelling anything, and, in the case of exposure to vacuum, holding one's breath against the negative pressure is mighty harmful, and will swiftly result in bloody damage to the sensitive inner structures of the lungs.


Please read again...


Quote

But the bottom line to "smell" is that it requires organic or inorganic odorants suspended in air. In other words, it requires something (air), which contains something else in it (an odorant), that can enter the nose in order to trigger the receptors which produces the perception of odor.

You've got to be able to breathe in order to smell something.

Now, space is almost completely nothing.
Of course, it's not entirely empty. However, relative to atmosphere here on Earth (where, incidentally the sense of smell evolved, utilizing the constituents of our atmosphere in order to develop the sense), it's absolutely vacant of anything. Thus it has no smell whatsoever, since it isn't anything but vacuum.

Further, attempting to smell space would involve opening your helmet, so you could sniff.

Remember that people who work in space have these really expensive suits they wear. This is because humans evolved and live in an atmosphere which consists of something. They cannot live in an environment that consists of nothing...thus, the really expensive suits which hold someting all around them under pressure so they can live and work in that environment.


Unfortunately, due to the zero pressure outside your suit, the pressure inside your suit would rapidly bleed out of your hat in rapid fashion, and you would find yourself suddenly having the air sucked right out of your lungs...rendering you absolutely unable to sniff, momentarily wondering (in an horrific panic) why you ever thought of such an idea in the first place, unconscious within about 10 to 12 seconds (for physiological reasons I shall not get into here (it's yucky)), and thoroughly dead within a matter of minutes.


So, no, space has no smell, and thus cannot be smelled, because it is actually nothing. It is also incredibly foolhardy to attempt it, and would be a fatal experiment.



No, it cannot be done, and no human is made of the "right stuff" to be able to do it.



#34    MID

MID

    Forum Divinity

  • Member
  • 14,490 posts
  • Joined:06 Aug 2005
  • Gender:Male

  • ...The greatest error is not to have tried and failed, but that in trying, we did not give it our best effort.

Posted 18 September 2007 - 10:48 PM

Quote

So the universe has the potential to smell. But as Questionmark pointed out, our noses are not ideal receptors for this smell, as it would take many years to accumulate enough random molecules for our noses to analyse the scent, by which time most noses would have got bored and wandered off. (they may even have run tongue.gif )

Meow Purr.



Actually, smell requires odorants suspended in air, or some atmospheric component, so we can inhale them into our noses and create the stimulus to perceive odor.


Space has no atmosphere, so it has no potential to trigger a sense of smell in a human being.




#35    Lilly

Lilly

    Forum Divinity

  • 14,665 posts
  • Joined:16 Apr 2004
  • Gender:Female

  • "To thine own self be true" William Shakespeare

Posted 18 September 2007 - 10:50 PM

Quote

No, it cannot be done, and no human is made of the "right stuff" to be able to do it.


Well, someone could try it...but only once...laugh.gif

*disclaimer: do not try this at home kiddies!

"Ignorance is ignorance. It is a state of mind, not an opinion." ~MID~

"All that live must die, passing through nature into eternity" ~Shakespeare~ Posted Image

#36    She-ra

She-ra

    ~♥ Princess Of Power ♥~

  • Member
  • 10,859 posts
  • Joined:23 Jun 2007
  • Gender:Female

Posted 18 September 2007 - 10:53 PM

Quote

Well, someone could try it...but only once...laugh.gif

*disclaimer: do not try this at home kiddies!


LMAO and make a sign "Beware of flying body parts" Ewwwwwwww. Ok BYE. original.gif


Posted Image


#37    MID

MID

    Forum Divinity

  • Member
  • 14,490 posts
  • Joined:06 Aug 2005
  • Gender:Male

  • ...The greatest error is not to have tried and failed, but that in trying, we did not give it our best effort.

Posted 18 September 2007 - 10:58 PM

Quote

There might be a medium in space that which we might not know of.. something that can't be detected. Air isn't the only thing that can make smell travel, how about water? How do sharks find a tiny drop of blood in a vast ocean? Their sense of smell can pick it up underwater. The water acts as a medium.

Smells aren't only detectable in air, think about that for a little bit. Space may contain a gas that's invisible like air but with such a microscopic density, mass and volume that it's barely detectable, for now.




If we can't detect it, it doesn't matter.  We know space is a vacuum, and we can't smell in a vacuum.
Smells are detectable in other media, like through water, but not for humans.   We're talking about humans smelling nothing, which is what space largely is...




#38    MID

MID

    Forum Divinity

  • Member
  • 14,490 posts
  • Joined:06 Aug 2005
  • Gender:Male

  • ...The greatest error is not to have tried and failed, but that in trying, we did not give it our best effort.

Posted 18 September 2007 - 10:59 PM

Quote

I think he's joking Mid. He knows his head would get sucked off or collapse or something really scary yes.gif original.gif Jody




I hope he's kidding, darlin'!

I can't tell sometimes...I'm dumb that way!


thumbsup.gif


#39    Lilly

Lilly

    Forum Divinity

  • 14,665 posts
  • Joined:16 Apr 2004
  • Gender:Female

  • "To thine own self be true" William Shakespeare

Posted 18 September 2007 - 11:05 PM

Quote

I can't tell sometimes...I'm dumb that way!


Not really...after some of the things I've read...no, not really "dumb" for not being able to tell.


"Ignorance is ignorance. It is a state of mind, not an opinion." ~MID~

"All that live must die, passing through nature into eternity" ~Shakespeare~ Posted Image

#40    MID

MID

    Forum Divinity

  • Member
  • 14,490 posts
  • Joined:06 Aug 2005
  • Gender:Male

  • ...The greatest error is not to have tried and failed, but that in trying, we did not give it our best effort.

Posted 18 September 2007 - 11:09 PM

Quote

Well, someone could try it...but only once...laugh.gif

*disclaimer: do not try this at home kiddies!




grin2.gif ...I shall not be the one to do so, Lil!

...and PLEASE KIDS, LISTEN TO LILLY...she knows what she's talking about!

I like this analogy (although not completely accurate....):

Tape your nose shut, stick a vacuum cleaner hose in your mouth, turn on the vacuum cleaner, and attempt to breathe!

(it's not entirely accurate beyond a couple seconds because the vacuum cleaner provides continual negative pressure, and will attempt to suck your lungs out.  The vacuum of space will only suck until the pressure between your lungs and the environment equalizes).


Quote

(She-ra)LMAO and make a sign "Beware of flying body parts" Ewwwwwwww. Ok BYE.


Beware of floating blood globules from ruptured lungs, nitrogen bubbles in the blood, and floating bodies!


...this is becoming exceedingly un-attractive, no?









#41    MID

MID

    Forum Divinity

  • Member
  • 14,490 posts
  • Joined:06 Aug 2005
  • Gender:Male

  • ...The greatest error is not to have tried and failed, but that in trying, we did not give it our best effort.

Posted 18 September 2007 - 11:11 PM

Quote

Not really...after some of the things I've read...no, not really "dumb" for not being able to tell.




Sweet, kind, and rational as always, Lil!

(...you're right, of course.  I've read what you've read...in wonder and amazement.   It's enough to make certain neural connections dis-connect!)


#42    Ght

Ght

    Remote Viewer

  • Member
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 512 posts
  • Joined:30 Jul 2007
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Miami

  • Be my slave. Convert to Christianity! :)

Posted 19 September 2007 - 04:03 AM

Quote

If we can't detect it, it doesn't matter.  We know space is a vacuum, and we can't smell in a vacuum.


How can it not matter if we can't detect it. Ages ago people couldn't detect infrared and ultraviolet light, they couldn't detect nothing beyond physical light.. and now that we can it does matter.  And who said you can't smell in a vacuum? If there really is an invisible substance in space which can act as a medium for smell, obviously smell can happen. The molecules would just travel to your nose like in air.

Now, if your saying that humans possibly don't have the capability to smell it physically (i.e. Nose), then yes I agree, but to say that it's not there is impossible. We wouldn't know about smell being able to travel through water if it wasn't for the research we have done on marine animal life.

Yes, there is a chance smell could exist in space. There's a chance it can't. We'll find out later in the future.


Who are you to judge the life I live? I know I'm not perfect and I don't live to be. But, before you start pointing fingers, make sure your hands are clean. - Bob Marley.

#43    MID

MID

    Forum Divinity

  • Member
  • 14,490 posts
  • Joined:06 Aug 2005
  • Gender:Male

  • ...The greatest error is not to have tried and failed, but that in trying, we did not give it our best effort.

Posted 19 September 2007 - 10:13 PM

Quote

How can it not matter if we can't detect it. Ages ago people couldn't detect infrared and ultraviolet light, they couldn't detect nothing beyond physical light.. and now that we can it does matter.  And who said you can't smell in a vacuum? If there really is an invisible substance in space which can act as a medium for smell, obviously smell can happen. The molecules would just travel to your nose like in air.

Now, if your saying that humans possibly don't have the capability to smell it physically (i.e. Nose), then yes I agree, but to say that it's not there is impossible. We wouldn't know about smell being able to travel through water if it wasn't for the research we have done on marine animal life.

Yes, there is a chance smell could exist in space. There's a chance it can't. We'll find out later in the future.



Ghost,

You really must read and research what's being said carefully.

When I said it didn't matter, that referred to the fact that it cannot be smelled, not that it is detectable or not.  
Comparing light sensing to scent sensing is irrelevant to the discussion.  We do not need air in order to see something, and instruments that can represent other wavelengths of light than the visible spectrum require no air either (they're not human).


Who said you (meaning humans) can't smell in a vacuum?
I did.  Additionally, science did as well.

Please read again...it is impossible to smell without odorants being suspended in air.  The human sense of smell is dependent upon those two factors in order to function.


You say..."If you're saying humans possibly don't have the capability to smell it physically (i.e., the Nose), then yes I agree..."

I am saying that human's can't smell what's not there to smell.  Vacuum is nothing.  Space does not contain the constituents necessary to trigger the sense of smell in humans. It's not a possibility.  It is an impossibility to smell space.

Smell is a physical capability.  There's no other way for humans to smell save with physical organs that are designed for the task (noses, scent receptors, and brains).  


This is exactly what we're talking about;  the human sense of smell being used to smell space.   That is impossible.  


Further, dwelling on "scent" being transmitted through water, and the capabilities of fish to smell something like blood is also irrelevant.  A fish's smell evolved to pick up odorants suspended in water.  Our's evolved to pick up odorants suspended in air.  We can no more smell blood in water than fish can smell roses in air.  

And neither of us (the fishies, or us humans...or just about any other living organism on this planet) can do anything in vacuum...except die.

We cannot smell nothing.  
We cannot breathe without air.
We must be able to breathe in order to smell.
There is no air in space.
We can't breathe in space.
Therefore, we can't smell.




#44    ships-cat

ships-cat

    Alien Abducter

  • Member
  • 5,121 posts
  • Joined:03 Apr 2007
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Nottingham, UK

  • ..it's all too confusing for the working Cat to understand.... :(

Posted 19 September 2007 - 10:23 PM

We're going in circles here...

quick recap.

"space" is NOT a vacuumn, there ARE particles of matter there (mostly - though not exclusively -  Hydrogen ???? ).

Therefore space DOES have the POTENTIAL to "smell".

But our noses lack the ability to smell it, as they are geared up to Terran atmospheric pressures in order to operate properly. You wouldn't expect an aeroplane to work properly underwater. You wouldn't exepct a flower to bloom underground in solid rock.  You wouldn't expect your noses to work in outer space. it's about the operating environment.

Meow Purr.

A cat stretches from one end of my childhood to the other.

#45    She-ra

She-ra

    ~♥ Princess Of Power ♥~

  • Member
  • 10,859 posts
  • Joined:23 Jun 2007
  • Gender:Female

Posted 19 September 2007 - 10:27 PM

Quote

grin2.gif ...I shall not be the one to do so, Lil!

...and PLEASE KIDS, LISTEN TO LILLY...she knows what she's talking about!

I like this analogy (although not completely accurate....):

Tape your nose shut, stick a vacuum cleaner hose in your mouth, turn on the vacuum cleaner, and attempt to breathe!

(it's not entirely accurate beyond a couple seconds because the vacuum cleaner provides continual negative pressure, and will attempt to suck your lungs out.  The vacuum of space will only suck until the pressure between your lungs and the environment equalizes).
Beware of floating blood globules from ruptured lungs, nitrogen bubbles in the blood, and floating bodies!
...this is becoming exceedingly un-attractive, no?


YES - OH GAWD...Okay enough space and astronomy lessons for me today...yak! original.gif

PS: good one Mid original.gif


Posted Image





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users