The exosphere and the melting point of aluminum

I felt like talking temperature, heat, and the melting points for various metals today (or at least one metal anyway). Most may not know this, but I spent close to three years as a welder for the oil industry before the bottom fell out. During my time as a welder I spent roughly an entire year of that time welding aluminum specifically.

So, here is the thing… NASA has me scratching my head once more.

And here’s why:

heat

Now, before I get into my little rant… here is the NASA link that talks about the atmosphere layers. Here is a NASA link that gives the specs of the ISS. Here is a NASA sponsored link talking about the ISS in relation to those atmospheric layers.

Now, did you know that both satellites and the ISS orbit the earth in the highest layer of the atmosphere called the exosphere? The temperature in the exosphere varies greatly and can range from 0 to over 1700 degrees Celsius. It is colder at night and much hotter during the day. With that said, 1700 degrees Celsius equals roughly 3092 degrees Fahrenheit (if you didn’t already know that little bit of information). With this in mind, please note that aluminum melts at roughly 650 degrees Celsius, or roughly 1200 degrees Fahrenheit. But don’t take my word for it. Here is a chart of various metals and their melting points. I find that rather strange.

And guess what – the ISS is mostly made up of “aluminum”. But don’t take my word for it. Just ask Robert Forest, Operations Directorate for NASA.

With that in mind, here are the questions – One, how in the world does the ISS handle both 0 degrees and 3000 degrees. According to this information this drastic change would occur every 12 hours. How could anyone survive that? How does the ISS not melt? How do the computers, oxygen, and water (humans are made up of mostly water) not freeze? When metal heats, it expands. When metal freezes, it becomes dense. How does the ISS handle this constant 12 hour rotation of expansion and depression without completely coming apart? No offense, but I’m not buying it. Humans can not exist in those conditions regardless of how fake your super human comic book based fictional aluminum is.

If the ISS were in the exosphere as NASA claims, it would have melted already killing everyone on board. This is not conspiracy. This is logic and common sense. But, what do I know? I’m just an ignorant person. Look this stuff up for yourself.

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2 thoughts on “The exosphere and the melting point of aluminum

  1. Pingback: Metal Expands and retracts under varying temperatures |

  2. Pingback: Science fact, or science fiction? |

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