Chapter 3: Neutrons

Experimental Verification

The supermassive galactic stars that die in GRBs should still be visible from earth at extreme red shifts (around ten) corresponding to an epoch roughly thirteen billion years ago. Indeed, as the first luminous objects created after the Big Bang, they mark the very edge of the visible universe. They have been classified by astronomers as Active Galactic Nucleus (AGN) galaxies, and are currently explained as supermassive black holes that are actively consuming matter swirling around them in large accretion disks. True, such phenomena (typically called quasars) do, in fact, generate tremendous energy, and it is also true that the collapse of a galactic star leads to a supermassive quasar as the black hole consumes the remainder of its neutron core. Still, some fraction of these AGN observations should be intact galactic stars. Exactly what fraction depends on the relative longevity of galactic stars and quasars, and that question forces us to consider a rather bizarre possibility.

It is well known that the life-span of a star drops precipitously as its mass increases. For a galactic star of a ten million solar masses, this implies a disturbingly short life, possibly on the order of only years or decades. If that turns out to be true, these objects will be hard to catch in the act. But if one is found, it might be worth the expense to train a telescope on it permanently, on the assumption that it will explode in a GRB in a reasonable time-frame. The current AGN theory, like the current GRB theory, is hamstrung by the notion that galactic stars are physically impossible. Since we now know this is untrue, these huge stars need to be among the primary targets of astronomers’ telescopes.

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