The Atlantic

Blueberry Earth: The Delicious Thought Experiment That's Roiling Planetary Scientists

“A roaring ocean of boiling jam, with the geysers of released air and steam likely ejecting at least a few berries into orbit.”
Source: Kyselova Inna / Shutterstock

Updated on August 3, 2018

Hey, it’s summer! It’s blueberry season! Can I offer you a thought experiment on what would happen if the Earth were replaced by “an equal volume of closely packed but uncompressed blueberries”?

When Anders Sandberg saw this question, he could not let it go. The asker was one “billybodega,” who posted the scenario on Physics Stack Exchange. (Though the question was originally .) A moderator of the usually staid forum closed the discussion before Sandberg could reply. That didn’t matter. Sandberg, a researcher at Oxford’s Future of Humanity and then that he posted to arxiv.org, a repository for physics preprints that have not yet been peer reviewed.

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