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The Andromeda MIR Strain.
March 8, 2001 1:17 PM   Subscribe

The Andromeda MIR Strain. Russia pushed back the MIR deorbit dates by another two weeks on Tuesday. Meanwhile, questions have surfaced about whether the mutant micoorganisms that inhabit the station will survive the fiery decent. Just another sci-fi story? Or should we be worried both about the ISS and Biosphere One (a.k.a. Earth)?
posted by iceberg273 (15 comments total)

 
Excellent tie-in iceberg! That was a great book, and one of the only films I've seen that followed the book very closely (even if was seemed super-low budget).

I don't get this sentence:

Though surprisingly destructive, they give off corrosive agents like acetic acid and release toxins into the air.

Aren't both of these things bad? Isn't this like saying "though very lethal, they ooze cyanide and release aerosol sarin."
posted by OneBallJay at 3:30 PM on March 8, 2001


What really concerns me is that no one is talking about the overall environmental implications of dumping MIR into the Pacific. This is a huge chunk of metal that's going to fall right in the middle of the same ocean from which humans get fish. I don't think this is the last we'll see of MIR. Sooner or later, we'll probably eat it.
posted by amyscoop at 3:31 PM on March 8, 2001


Whoops, I'm having some verb conjugation problems. As long as they don't interfere with my conjugal visits, I'll be okay.
posted by OneBallJay at 3:32 PM on March 8, 2001


Though surprisingly destructive, they give off corrosive agents like acetic acid and release toxins into the air.

Aren't both of these things bad? Isn't this like saying "though very lethal, they ooze cyanide and release aerosol sarin."


Or you could say that humans, or any animal for that matter, give off corrosive agents like sweat and release toxins into the air like methane. No?
posted by redleaf at 4:23 PM on March 8, 2001


Sooner or later, we'll probably eat it.

Speak for yourself, amyscoop.
posted by Eamon at 4:35 PM on March 8, 2001


The point I was making was about the word "though." Usually, I think, it can be used interchangably with "despite" and is used to indicate a contrast. So the sentence makes no sense.

Correct use of though:

Though human beings can be suprisingly sweet at times, they secrete corrosive sweat and choking methane fumes.

Alrighty then, who's up for some cream-filled Mir pies?
posted by OneBallJay at 5:32 PM on March 8, 2001


I see. Though I could be mistaken. Sometimes I start to use though too much and change to but. Although that could be incorrect usage. Newspapers and especially wire services seem to make alot more grammatical errors now that they have to get it out so much faster.
posted by redleaf at 5:39 PM on March 8, 2001


Oy vey ist Mir (or something).
posted by rodii at 7:39 PM on March 8, 2001


Dumping Mir into the Pacific? That's pretty much like saying "Hey, you accidentally dropped that grain of salt into my -- well -- Pacific Ocean!"

Seriously, the size of the Pacific and the size of the Mir are so drastically different as to not amount to even a drop in the bucket (pun intended). If you want to be concerned about environmental impact, try the one hundred thousand other major pollutants which get constantly dumped into our oceans.

It's a damn good thing it's big or else we'd be parking our cars on it right about now...
posted by fooljay at 9:36 PM on March 8, 2001


Metal eating fungi, sounds like a great biological weapon that might get out of hand.


posted by Zool at 9:44 PM on March 8, 2001


Rust?
posted by redleaf at 10:07 PM on March 8, 2001


Guess what -- we dump an external tank every time we launch a space shuttle. We jettison first, second, and sometimes third stages every time a communications satellite is launched to keep our CNN live. We have dropped many, many parts of spacecraft into the ocean before this, and will do so into the foreseeable future. Why? Because there's no other way to get rid of them.

Incidentally, a recent environmentally friendly thing to do is to dump old subway cars in appropriate places where they can serve as reefs for local flora and fauna.

Yes, I think we can all agree that the story ended with a particularly poorly copy-edited use of the concessive clause.
posted by dhartung at 10:36 PM on March 8, 2001


concessive clause

Thanks Dan! I learn something new everyday. Now I just have to look that up...
posted by redleaf at 10:43 PM on March 8, 2001


Hey Dan, don't those subway cars get stripped and sandblasted before they're dropped in the ocean? I remember reading ages ago about the U.S. military doing something similar with old tanks, and recall that they said they were cleaning them up really well before dumping them.
posted by owen at 8:06 AM on March 10, 2001


owen, I present you with the effects of re-entry. Or were you volunteering to go up there and personally sandblast?

As for the "mutant fungus", I noted elsewhere that if this is indeed a differentiated species, and there's no proof of that, it has evolved for a very specific artificial environment: an oxygen-rich atmosphere inside a metal can with lots of plastic and electrical materials. Not much of any of that at the bottom of the Pacific.
posted by dhartung at 10:34 AM on March 10, 2001


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