We all have seen a number of movies where the actors get into a pod filled with blue liquid and falling into deep slumber only to wake up into a new world. What might seem straight out of a sci-fi can soon be a reality with Cryogenics. However, what is it? Can humans be actually resurrected? You might be amazed to know what we have in store.
What is Cryogenics?
The process where a human corpse or a severed head is frozen in temperature which is as low as -196°C or -320.8°F or 77.1 K and stored with the hope that one day resurrection might be possible in the future is called Cryogenics.
The word “Cryogenics” comes from the Greek word “Kryo” which means cold combined with the short form of the English word “to Generate”. The whole meaning of this world is ‘the generation of temperatures well below those of normal human experience.’ Cryogenics is considered as a pseudoscience. Pseudoscience is the statements, beliefs, or practices that one claims to be scientific as well as factual but do not prove their compatibility with the proper scientific methods. Therefore, the process of Cryogenics is also known to be a fraudulent medical procedure which has no future and is way too advanced to be using on humans.
The Origin of Cryogenics
Cryogenics wasn’t always used for preserving human bodies. In the nineteenth century, cryogenics was used to liquefy the permanent gasses. Michael Faraday, an English physicist, scientist, and chemist, succeeded in liquefying most of the gases known to exist back then in 1845.
The process of Cryogenics can happen only after a person is declared clinically and legally dead. The process of freezing and preserving the body after death starts within minutes of the death. In order to preserve the body, certain cryoprotectants are used to prevent ice formation during cryopreservation. Cryoprotectants are substances that are used to protect the biological tissues from freezing damage. The insects, fish, and amphibians in the Arctic and Antarctic create cryoprotectants in their body to minimize the freezing damage which is usually caused due to the harsh winter and plenty of ice available.
The Four Stage Procedure of Cryogenics
The process in this freezing of bodies has four essential procedures that are used to produce the cryogenic environments. This includes Heat conduction, Evaporative cooling, Cooling by Rapid expansion and Adiabatic demagnetization.
First, let’s talk about the Heat conduction. Heat conduction is a pretty common process known to everyone. When two bodies come in contact, one with the higher temperature and one with a lower temperature, the heat flows from the higher temperature body to the lower temperature body. This conduction can appear between any form of matter regardless of it being a gas, liquid or solid. This process is very important in the production of cryogenic temperatures. Samples can be cooled to cryogenic temperature by putting them in a cryogenic liquid or in an environment that resembles that of the cryogenic pod. As a result, the samples temperature lowers to meet the temperature of its surrounding and lasts longer than anticipated.
The next process is the evaporative cooling. In this process, the molecules having less energy in their liquid state, evaporate and become gaseous and gain more energy from its surrounding liquid. The remining liquid temperature drops and that is why the scientists use evaporation to cool down the liquid in the cryogenic pods. The process is used to drop the temperature of the liquids in the body by pumping away the molecules that evaporate and the remaining liquid is of the temperature that is required for cryogenics. For example, this method can be used to freeze liquid nitrogen or to a lower temperature of liquid helium to 1K which is -458°F or -272°C.
The third process is cooling by rapid expansion which is also known as the Joule-Thompson effect. According to this effect, when a real gas or liquid is forced through a valve or porous plug while keeping it insulated, no heat is exchanged with the environment. Therefore, the gas or liquid experiences a drop in the temperature. Our refrigerators use this effect. The gas is pressurized and cooled to a base temperature by contact with a colder gas or liquid. The gas then expands and its temperature drops as desired. The Cryogenic pods use this same technique by using gases like helium.
The last process is the Adiabatic demagnetization. As the name suggests, magnetic salts are used to absorb the heat from the environment.
Alcor - The Cryogenic Expert
The leading company in Cryogenic is Alcor. The organization offers its customers a chance to preserve their bodies indefinitely until resurrection is possible. Alcor says that they will hold the body for a low price of $220,000.
The founder of Alcor, Linda Chamberlin founded the Alcor Life Extension Foundation back in 1972 along with her now dead husband Fred Chamberlin. Fred is now one of the people that have been preserved in the insulated, stainless-steel preservation chamber. Linda says she often talks to her husband through the chamber and that she has plans on joining him in the chamber as well after her death.
“Our best estimates are that within 50 to 100 years, we will have the medical technologies needed to restore our patients to health and function,” says Chamberlain.
The List of People Who Might Be Resurrected
Corpses subjected to the cryonics process include those of baseball players Ted Williams and son John Henry Williams (in 2002 and 2004), respectively.
PayPal founder Luke Nosek and Peter Thiel have arranged for cryonics upon death. The famous comedian best known for Family Guy, Seth McFarlane, also plans of being frozen cryogenically after his death. Simon Cowell, Paris Hilton and Britney Spears are also interested in preserving their bodies by Cryogenics.
There is a day dedicated Cryopreservation!
The town of Netherland, Colorado, hosts an annual Frozen Dead Guy Days festival to commemorate a substandard attempt at Cryopreservation. This festival is typically celebrated in the second week of March. The event roped in 25,000 visitors in 2019. Due to Covid-19 pandemic, the festival was cancelled in 2020. The official site says that the festival is postponed till 2022 but they will try to host an ice-breaker event called “Melt Down Get Down.” In late summer. The Cryogenics fans also call themselves ‘Frostifarians’.
Well as long as they don’t go killing themselves and others in an attempt to have their bodies