MAY 31, 2017 4:59 PM PDT

Should you freeze yourself to live forever?


Cryonics refers to a super cold (usually −196°C) preservation technique that people with terminal diseases whom contemporary medicine cannot save may undertake, freezing their bodies with the hope that in a long, long time, they may be resuscitated and restored to full health with advances in medicine. Sound a little far-flung? Well there are at least a few hundred people having committed to this process.

But what does the process of suspending life actually involve? When someone reaches the point of no-return in their disease, they will be "de-animated" and cooled rapidly to a super cold temperature so as to minimize damage of body tissues. The body is then placed in liquid nitrogen to remain there until one day...in the far future.

However, there of course is a catch: the science hasn't yet figured out how to "re-animate" people. Because our cells are filled with water, when the water freezes, crystals form. And when those crystals melt...the cells in a body would simply turn to mush. Which isn't exactly the reviving of life that some people are hoping for. Nevertheless, the faith behind the technology is that by the time people are going to be unfrozen, the science will have caught up too!
About the Author
  • Kathryn is a curious world-traveller interested in the intersection between nature, culture, history, and people. She has worked for environmental education non-profits and is a Spanish/English interpreter.
You May Also Like
NOV 07, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Scientists Detect Origin of Fast Radio Burst in Milky Way
NOV 07, 2020
Scientists Detect Origin of Fast Radio Burst in Milky Way
Scientists have identified a burst of cosmic radio waves- intense flashes of radio emission that last just a few millise ...
FEB 19, 2021
Plants & Animals
What can Lemurs Teach us About Love?
FEB 19, 2021
What can Lemurs Teach us About Love?
Although not entirely accurate, romantic sentiments such as "you're my lobster" or "you're my pen ...
APR 09, 2021
Plants & Animals
Speedbumps Reduce Endangered Red Colobus Deaths
APR 09, 2021
Speedbumps Reduce Endangered Red Colobus Deaths
The endangered Zanzibar red colobus is a rare primate that lives only in the Zanzibar archipelago. New research from Ban ...
JUL 03, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Size of Planet Iron Core Depends on Star Magnetism
JUL 03, 2021
Size of Planet Iron Core Depends on Star Magnetism
Researchers led by the University of Maryland have found that the sun's magnetic field is the reason behind the larg ...
JUL 16, 2021
Earth & The Environment
Melting Mountain Glaciers in Asia Release Greenhouse Gas
JUL 16, 2021
Melting Mountain Glaciers in Asia Release Greenhouse Gas
High mountain glaciers that are melting in the Tibetan plateau in Asia contain greenhouse gases and should be counted in ...
NOV 09, 2021
Space & Astronomy
10 Facts You May Not Know About Carl Sagan
NOV 09, 2021
10 Facts You May Not Know About Carl Sagan
Carl Sagan was born November 9, 1934, 87 years ago today. He would go on to become one of the most influential voices in ...
Loading Comments...