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Lock him up!
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# 183743 28-Oct-2015 17:56
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Is there a place here for extremely random questions? I was wondering how big a cockroach could get if there was no limit on atmospheric oxygen. Could it be as big as a hippopotamous? How much oxygen would be required to achieve that? If it could be achieved, would the atmosphere catch on fire? If it did, would a self-correcting process take place as oxygen combusted? Would the fire go out when the level of oxygen reached 21% and would cockroaches return to normal size?




I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


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mdf

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  # 1415678 28-Oct-2015 18:45
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I'd start with http://what-if.xkcd.com/. I haven't seen the answer to that particular query, but there's some pretty outlandish stuff on there (with impeccably researched answers).



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  # 1415683 28-Oct-2015 18:59
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Thanks for the link. Exactly what I needed. If I get an answer I will post it here.





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


 
 
 
 


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  # 1415695 28-Oct-2015 19:31
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If you search on cockroaches in oxygen rich atmosphere you will find that they apparently take longer to grow to the same size. Dragonflies get larger so you need to swap insects.

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  # 1416903 30-Oct-2015 12:10
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Rikkitic:
Is there a place here for extremely random questions? I was wondering how big a cockroach could get if there was no limit on atmospheric oxygen. Could it be as big as a hippopotamous? How much oxygen would be required to achieve that? If it could be achieved, would the atmosphere catch on fire? If it did, would a self-correcting process take place as oxygen combusted? Would the fire go out when the level of oxygen reached 21% and would cockroaches return to normal size?


We need more randomness like this around here! :-)

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  # 1416907 30-Oct-2015 12:14
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What about Stack Exchange? They have "world building" questions like that:

http://worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/questions/20946/at-what-oxygen-levels

I have spent far too much time reading some of the interesting answers.

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  # 1417012 30-Oct-2015 14:02
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mdf: I'd start with http://what-if.xkcd.com/. I haven't seen the answer to that particular query, but there's some pretty outlandish stuff on there (with impeccably researched answers).


Great. It's not like I had anything else to do today....



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  # 1417044 30-Oct-2015 14:30
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There's a subreddit for stuff like this. I see if I can find it.

Edit: This might be what you're after: reddit.com/r/theydidthemath

 
 
 
 


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  # 1417054 30-Oct-2015 14:41
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Not sure how cockroach growth had anything to do with oxygen percentage of atmosphere?




Involuntary autocorrect in operation on mobile device. Apologies in advance.


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  # 1417059 30-Oct-2015 14:50
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joker97: Not sure how cockroach growth had anything to do with oxygen percentage of atmosphere?


This should answer your question, although as Bung wrote earlier cockroaches seem to behave differently to the other insects.



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  # 1417079 30-Oct-2015 15:22
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Leave it to me to pick the wrong insect.





I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney
 


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  # 1417098 30-Oct-2015 15:37
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Yeah, but you ain't gonna see insects the size of cats or anything,  :)

According to this study even at an oxygen concentration equal to the highest known, dragonflys were only 15% bigger than regular

http://www.wired.com/2010/11/huge-dragonflies-oxygen/

JWR

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  # 1417283 30-Oct-2015 19:13

Rikkitic:
Is there a place here for extremely random questions? I was wondering how big a cockroach could get if there was no limit on atmospheric oxygen. Could it be as big as a hippopotamous? How much oxygen would be required to achieve that? If it could be achieved, would the atmosphere catch on fire? If it did, would a self-correcting process take place as oxygen combusted? Would the fire go out when the level of oxygen reached 21% and would cockroaches return to normal size?


They certainly could never be as big as a hippo.

Their exoskeletons and legs would never support the increase in body weight.

Strength of limbs etc. is proportional to cross-sectional area - which a squared (x^2) relationship with size.

But, volume/weight increases as cube (x^3) relationship with size.

e.g. 100 times longer ... 10,000 times more limb strength.. but a million times more weight.

There never will be giant insects that size.

The same relationship would hold with Oxygen uptake too.

If you want to grow really big, then you need stubby legs and slowed metabolism.

mdf

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  # 1417300 30-Oct-2015 19:44
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Rikkitic: Leave it to me to pick the wrong insect.



What exactly were you planning? And should the rest of us be concerned?

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