Reel Physics: Indiana Jones 4: Crystal Skull - Nuking the Fridge

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Indiana Jones 4: Crystal Skull - Nuking the Fridge

This week we find out if Indy really could have survived that nuclear blast.

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Hey everyone, thanks as always for watching and supporting the show.

This week is our biggest episode yet and we go into quite a bit of research. I look forward to your feedback because this episode yielded interesting results, some of which are contrary to what you might believe ahead of time.

We had a blast making it. If you don't normally check out the outtakes, spend a moment at the end watching these. They're pretty good.

If you like our series, remember to share it with your friends so they can discover the show as well! And check out all of the great shows here at the Escapist to discover some of the best content on the net!

Jason Dean
REEL PHYSICS

Oh! I finally get it!
It's like Reel, like a film reel.

Like physics that only works on a film reel.

I feel so dumb, it took me 9 episodes to get that!

It's also shocking that that scene is 66% plausible.
I can't believe it but 2/3 of the proof is in the pudding.

So, from what you guys showed, even I could survive being nuked if I'm in a fridge? Cool, now where to find a lead lined fridge and a place to get nuked! sounds like a thrill ride.

So, could one survive transferring from starship to starship like was shown on Titan A.E. ?

Wow, I would have bet a large amount of money that this would have ended in certain death.
Great episode, your best one yet imo. Only gripe I may have, is that even though you always listed the metric and imperial units on the tables in the video you did jump around between the two systems when you talked, but besides that minor issue great video!

Admit it. We wall watched this movie. We all thought this scene was kind of cool, even if it really became the new "jumping the shark."

And now I know that I could theoretically survive a nuclear blast inside a refrigerator. No more "put your hands between your knees and kiss your butt goodbye" for me...

Capcha: "I like people." That's just what a computer planning on the extermination of the human race would say...

If I'd been asked to call this (ignoring the car scene) I'd have called it wrong. Huh.

Now to get me a leadlined fridge in preparation for whenever WW3 breaks out...

Colby, it's pronounced New Klee Er, not New Cool Er. You sound like Sarah Palin.

Great episode guys! This may be my new favourite... I have some nerd arguments to re-ignite. And I have science!

Ha, I mention about that scene on here a few episodes ago!

So he does survie it (mostly) but I'm sure he would of gotten some broken bones or two!

As for suggestion for future episode ideas, a recent one occur to me is that scene at the start of The Dark Knight Rises. Is it possible for that big cargo plane to carry that smaller private ish plane with no problem? Granted I don't think they were flying at super speed but still it does seen far fetch.

The impact of the fridge from that height going that fast would crush every bone in his body the second it slammed to the ground. Then there's the issue of the nuclear fallout bathing him in radiation. Also, I was curious how hot it would get inside the fridge; lead-lined or not, it looks like it would get superheated like an oven and roast him alive.

Why am I over-thinking this movie? Ugh. ALIENS.

AlexanderPeregrine:
Guys, it's pronounced New Klee Er, not New Cool Er. You sound like Sarah Palin.

Actually.... it's only two syllables. NEW-CLEAR.
:)
Jason Dean
REEL PHYSICS

Mikeyfell:
Oh! I finally get it!
It's like Reel, like a film reel.

Like physics that only works on a film reel.

I feel so dumb, it took me 9 episodes to get that!

It's also shocking that that scene is 66% plausible.
I can't believe it but 2/3 of the proof is in the pudding.

Well when that fridge hits the ground 3/3 of the ancient movie star will also be pudding :P

The Gentleman:
Admit it. We wall watched this movie. We all thought this scene was kind of cool, even if it really became the new "jumping the shark."

Really the worst part was when it flew over the Russians in the car. And there is no way you can just get up and walk right after being subjected to instantaneous 5 G acceleration. At the very least Indie would have felt some... whiplash.

DVS BSTrD:
Really the worst part was when it flew over the Russians in the car. And there is no way you can just get up and walk right after being subjected to instantaneous 5 G acceleration. At the very least Indie would have felt some... whiplash.

Not technically a pun. You get away today...

AlexanderPeregrine:
Colby, it's pronounced New Klee Er, not New Cool Er. You sound like Sarah Palin.

You know, I briefed Jason on this before this episode. New Clear, New Clear, New Clear. Then I went and said it wrong. What a doof. In my defense, I do live in the armpit of Texas and despite a life of bitter war against colloquial pronunciations, it looks like I lost that battle, ya'll.

It realy hurts my ears every time you say "nuquelar". It's nuCLEAR, not nuquelar. :S

Otherwise great show, keep them coming!

Trishbot:
The impact of the fridge from that height going that fast would crush every bone in his body the second it slammed to the ground. Then there's the issue of the nuclear fallout bathing him in radiation. Also, I was curious how hot it would get inside the fridge; lead-lined or not, it looks like it would get superheated like an oven and roast him alive.

Why am I over-thinking this movie? Ugh. ALIENS.

It's not that high, he passes over quite close to the car and it doesn't look like he went much higher, and if he survives the 5G acceleration.

I don't know how good lead is at absorbing radiation and if they mentioned it I missed it, so that would have been fun to find out. But looking at this advice page, it suggests you can survive the radiation in a leadlined suit, which must be a lot thinner than a leadline fridge, so he really was completely protected from the radiation
http://www.realhomesafety.com/nuclearblast.htm

Out of curiosity, what rules do you guys use to decide whether some G-force is survivable? In the Flying Tank episode, you said (without hesitation) they'd experience about 3 Gs on landing which would be totally survivable. Here, you seemed a little less sure about Indy surviving 5.5 Gs, like you were thinking, "yeah, he'd survive, but he'd be pretty messed up, or would be if he hadn't previously drunk from the Holy Grail."

Also, if the fridge were that heavy, the scene has a morbidly hilarious outcome where Indy survives the blast and landing but has a 25% chance of the fridge landing with the door facing down, in which case he subsequently dehydrates or asphyxiates because he can't lift the half-ton fridge open.

BrotherRool:

Trishbot:
The impact of the fridge from that height going that fast would crush every bone in his body the second it slammed to the ground. Then there's the issue of the nuclear fallout bathing him in radiation. Also, I was curious how hot it would get inside the fridge; lead-lined or not, it looks like it would get superheated like an oven and roast him alive.

Why am I over-thinking this movie? Ugh. ALIENS.

It's not that high, he passes over quite close to the car and it doesn't look like he went much higher, and if he survives the 5G acceleration.

I don't know how good lead is at absorbing radiation and if they mentioned it I missed it, so that would have been fun to find out. But looking at this advice page, it suggests you can survive the radiation in a leadlined suit, which must be a lot thinner than a leadline fridge, so he really was completely protected from the radiation
http://www.realhomesafety.com/nuclearblast.htm

He is talking about the fallout radiation, i.e. the radiation around the place once he gets out of the fridge, which would most likely give him cancer if not another mutation based ilness.

OT: well didn't see that result coming.

He slams into the ground, unrestrained in a massive fridge, flying such a huge distance at 145 KPH, and walks away?
You should compare that 145 KPH with car crash data, because I am not buying it.
When you hit something that fast you're dead in two minutes from internal heamorhaging imho.

Hang on a sec. The fridge is accelerating at 53.73 metres per second squared, and it weighs about 707 kilos with Indy inside it. That means it'll hit the ground with about 38,000 newtons of force if I'm understanding this right- how the hell does Indy survive that?

More of this, please! Let's see how much force it'd take to launch an Iron Man suit!

You based the g-force calculations on 1/4" of lead, and said an unlined fridge would result in about 25g.

Where did that quarter-inch figure come from? If it was 1/8" or 1/16", that would result in much higher force being exerted, making the blast less survivable.

RobotDinosaur:
Out of curiosity, what rules do you guys use to decide whether some G-force is survivable? In the Flying Tank episode, you said (without hesitation) they'd experience about 3 Gs on landing which would be totally survivable. Here, you seemed a little less sure about Indy surviving 5.5 Gs, like you were thinking, "yeah, he'd survive, but he'd be pretty messed up, or would be if he hadn't previously drunk from the Holy Grail."

5g is about the limit for untrained people to handle g-force pulling downwards before passing out. People are much better able to withstand g-force perpendicular to their body, though.

Wow im surprised that it was survivable and im also surprised that there hasnt been alot of rage on the forums with people trying to debunk you guys in a frothing rage.

This was my first episode, but man was it ever worthwhile to watch!

Excellent and fun inspection of what might go on in that type of situation!

I figure I'll contribute some of my own Math to the "would he survive the landing?"

So we have an ageing movie star in a fridge travelling at 40ms-1. The fridge appears to roll to a stop when it hits the ground rather than stopping dead, so let's say that the fridge decelerates over the space of twenty seconds, which gives us a deceleration of 40/20=2ms-2. Using F=ma again, we can calculate the force on Indy during this deceleration (200lb = ~91kg) F=91*2=182N Which equates to about 182/9.81=18.5 kilograms of force. Which probably wouldn't be particularly enjoyable, and Indy might have a couple of broken bones but he should definitely be able to walk away.

This is only taking into account the horizontal velocity of the fridge and not taking into account any extra velocity it picked up from gravity. I'm only an A-level physics student, so feel free to point out my mistakes call my mathematics a load of rubbish.

Hold up a second though, Google says Harrison Ford is 6'1" so the fridge would have to be closer to 5'7" tall, probably 5'9" on a good day. Granted, he was hunched over while emptying it, but if he stood up straight next to it, he'd be at least one head length taller than the fridge.

Not saying it'd make a huge difference, but then I'm not a physicist and my brain would dribble out trying to work all the calculations you guys do, just saying.

It's possible Indy would have been dead anyway. Prior to the Refrigerator Safety Act of 1956 (which didn't even take effect until October of '58) many refrigerators had latches that couldn't be opened from the inside.

After watching that my biggest question is still how in the world does the fridge stay closed?

zerragonoss:
After watching that my biggest question is still how in the world does the fridge stay closed?

good old fashioned american engineering

ColbyDane:

AlexanderPeregrine:
Colby, it's pronounced New Klee Er, not New Cool Er. You sound like Sarah Palin.

You know, I briefed Jason on this before this episode. New Clear, New Clear, New Clear. Then I went and said it wrong. What a doof. In my defense, I do live in the armpit of Texas and despite a life of bitter war against colloquial pronunciations, it looks like I lost that battle, ya'll.

Of all the various pronunciations and accents there are, why does Nuclear annoy people so much?

Orbot_Vectorman:
So, from what you guys showed, even I could survive being nuked if I'm in a fridge? Cool, now where to find a lead lined fridge and a place to get nuked! sounds like a thrill ride.

So, could one survive transferring from starship to starship like was shown on Titan A.E. ?

You could probably get something similar from a safe manufacturer.

That said it doesn't surprise me that the scene is more or less plausible, barring the most minor element (the safe moving faster than the car).

The reason why it doesn't surprise me is that when this first started being mocked in the nerd subculture, I remember reading some justifications/explanation about the scene. Apparently it's based loosely on reality, and the key to that is what indie takes out of the fridge (milk, fruit, etc...). Apparently during real nuclear tests the guys conducting them wanted to test the results of a nuclear blast on differant kinds of food if it was stored. This lead to them creating storage devices that could survive the blast and "shield" the food intact so they could see what would actually happen to it. The idea more or less being that since they were still learning all of this stuff, that if someone was in a heavily shielded bunker, had their food in storage, and a nuke exploded right outside, would the food actually be okay/edible/etc... or would something in the blast damage or taint your milk, fruit, etc... that they hadn't accounted for.

What Indie is supposed to apparently be crawling into is not just supposed to be a normal fridge used as a testing prop, but basically a special module (for lack of a better term) intended for an associated test. The idea being that the fridge would be thrown clear, they could find it, open it, and test the stuff inside.

Since allegedly this was actually done successfully, the basic idea was that if some fruit or whatever could survive this, a person probably could. They didn't put the kind of thought Reel Physics did into it, but it was based on enough reality where it seems crazy, but stretches disbelief a lot less than you would normally think.

How true all of this is, I do not know, but the story made me suspect the outcome of this feature's number crunching.

Also as I said above, if you ever really want something like this and aren't simply looking for a full bunker, go with a safe manufacturer, they make all kinds of crazy custom things (though they get crazy expensive). Refridgerated safes for medical supplies and such actually do exist as well, so you know... if you wanted it to be cold in there it could probably be arranged. The wierdest part of such a request would probably be having it made to look like a fridge from the outside, thought with a custom order they probably wouldn't ask too many questions with the huge amounts of money you were throwing their way.

Some day perhaps a celebrity billionaire daredevil will build a lead lined fridge, frighten the world by getting a blackmarket Russian nuke, and as the world gasps in fear contemplating what act of terrorism he has in mind, he simply performs this stunt for real to see if it will work.... some day... yeah... I'm sure... any day now. Maybe it's what Justin Bieber will decide to do with his forune one day. :)

Kenjitsuka:
He slams into the ground, unrestrained in a massive fridge, flying such a huge distance at 145 KPH, and walks away?
You should compare that 145 KPH with car crash data, because I am not buying it.
When you hit something that fast you're dead in two minutes from internal heamorhaging imho.

In that kind of car crash, what kills you isn't, as the saying goes, the speed - it's the sudden stop. If the fridge was moving at 145 KPH with most of the velocity parallel to the ground, and on bouncing it retained a lot of its speed, the bounce could be survivable. It wouldn't be fun, and you'd need many such bounces before coming to a safe stop, but it's plausible.

zerragonoss:
After watching that my biggest question is still how in the world does the fridge stay closed?

That was one of my biggest questions during that scene. One would assume he would be holding it shut from the inside, which is possible. But Indy wasn't attached to anything on the inside to pull the door against the fridge very well.

So that leads me to the conclusion that the fridge door locks itself automatically whenever it closes and unlocks after a nuclear blast.

Wow, I did not see that coming. There's actually a hint of truth in one of the most ridiculously over the top scenes from the past decade. Hmm.

I also found a great one in the movie Sunshine: There is one scene where they have to travel through open space without suits, only a thin layer of isolation. Would that be possible?

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