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Several Ideas for Surviving the End of the World

Plamena M.Plamena M.

Scientists are categorical that after 500 million years at the most, the conditions on planet Earth won't allow even for cockroaches to survive. Humans might die out even earlier, by destroying themselves with nuclear war for example.

And yet there is hope for humanity after all. Scientists from Columbia University have come up with an analysis of the possibilities facing man.

According to the calculations of astrophysicists Michael Han and Daniel Wolf Savin, the Sun begins to glow 10% brighter every 1 billion years. This leads to a decrease of the carbon dioxide in Earth's atmosphere. As a result, plants begin to gradually die, after which oxygen reserves also decrease.

The glowing Sun raises the temperature on Earth's surface. The heat and scarce oxygen will gradually depopulate the planet in about half a billion years. Only microbes will be left on Earth at that point.

This is just one of the possible scenarios about what might happen with the human race. Our planet could also be hit by an asteroid, wiping off every last one of us. Or we could die during the merging of the galaxies, when Andromeda begins to swallow up the Milky Way. We could even be engulfed by the Sun itself, which may begin expanding after about 5 billion years.


One of the ideas scientists have come up with is for humanity to build a gigantic solar sail, 20 Earths in diameter. This will in theory allow for sunlight to move the planet farther from the Sun, without it leaving the habitable zone.

Another idea is to move Earth's orbit cardinally. If we allow an asteroid 62 mi (100 km) in diameter in elliptical orbit, it will pass near Earth every 5000 years. This will in theory move our planet's orbit farther from the Sun with the help of gravity.

Scientists are still hoping however, that by the time the end of the world rolls around, humans will have developed ways of integrating the consciousness of the brain into machines. This would allow us to endure even tougher conditions. But if our planet is irrevocably destroyed, we would be forced to look for a home in new galaxies.