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Perhaps Gravity Does Not Overcome Electron Shields!?

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Posted by Mikey Pearson on July 31, 2003 05:42:28 UTC

If I go to the river, grab a handful of mud and stuff it in a gallon of water, shake it up and set it down for a week, when I come back I'll find gravel at the bottom, sand above that, several layers of different size dirt particles, and clay at the top.
So, in the solar gravitational field, why isn't all of the gravel (uranium) and sand (iron)(and etc) at the "bottom" (the sun's core)?

Thanks Rick,
Subject to explanation by someone who actually has a grasp of the terms, I guess the following:
1) the heavy elements (which were not manufactured in the star, by the way, but in supernovae), have never arrived at the core of the star.
2) The heavy elements, you'll remember, have more protons and neutrons and electrons. The star's gravity is a well for letting things fall to its bottom...but the tendency to "fall" is countered by the larger elements' atomic & electron forces which, like friction, happen to be pushing and pulling in all their own directions...so they resist slightly the sifting to the bottom of the "well"....
3) This tiny difference is enough to give an advantage in the race to the bottom of the well TO the smaller atoms of lighter elements.
In this model, these ligher atoms are sorted selectively to the center. They are compressed and fused to make somewhat heavier atoms which tend to float upward.
4) A related example might be frost heave in soil.Rocks are gradually forced up through dirt to the surfact, even though the rocks are more dense (like a heavier atom) than the soil.

See if this can be a conversation starter when asking someone to explain it. I have only modest training in these matters. Sorry if I wasted your time.
Mike

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