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the void as an ocean. Scientifically plausible?

shamguy4

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Magic gets introduced later on in my book, as a sort of hidden thing… As such I want to keep it somewhat scientific till that point. This is integral to my plot.

My world is set in a very futuristic setting.
There are planets, and originally I had panned on calling them realms, and travel was quite simple. There are teleport stations, so you can simply go shopping down the block or across the galaxy in seconds.

Then I decided I wanted space travel, because it opens a lot of doors, to wars in the void as well as space pirates and all sort of fun things that are coming into my head. So I made it that the teleporting is short ranged and limited…

Because my story is truly magical later on, I wanted the void to be like the ocean... i found this:
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/SpaceIsAnOcean

I got this because I like stories where the characters seem to be able to breath out in the void filled with colors and debris flying through their hair… ahhh! sailing among the stars…

The problem is, I need it to sound scientific in the beginning as magic is not yet introduced.
Can I possibly get away with saying, the debris and stars emit oxygen and allows people to breath?

Perhaps this is too fake…
Does this even sound plausible?

My other idea was to make pockets of air or streamers that you can breath in. So its not everywhere… Coincidentally these streamers perhaps can help with FTL travel…
I dunno I think I could use some help here…
Im looking for a way to have starships be able to attack each other by swinging across ships! definitely cooler than a tractor beam…
 

tinkerdan

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I'd suggest that you look up pressure suits in relationship to space exploration and take what is there and (arg) science it: a lot.
Then mostly make reference to the important areas on the body that need extra padding to resist the effect of vacuum to explain certain lumpiness that might occur with the suits. That keeps the science at the beginning and then maybe later someone might magic them to make them trimmer.

Currents of oxygen that would be survivable would be difficult in a number of ways the first that it would be difficult to control them so the swinging ship to ship would only work if a ship is lured into the stream. But I'd love to see the science behind that strange affectation and the explanation as to how we haven't noticed them yet.

Of course this could be an alternate universe where nearly anything is possible.
 

cgsmith

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For there to be a survivable atmosphere in this void of yours (right pressure, temperature, composition, etc) would require quite a contrived and complicated bunch of explanation. Why not have whatever environment you want for your ships - assuming that you want them to sail the void - and leave the humans in space suits. That is more plausible if you ask me, and there all sorts of dramatic things that can arise from damaged suits and things.
 

shamguy4

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So I'm looking at either the stream idea. Or the spacesuit. Butbitbwouks need to be a slim sexy suit...
The space suits in reality that we have are nerdy nerdy!!!

What does a space suit require? What's composition?
 

cgsmith

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So I'm looking at either the stream idea. Or the spacesuit. Butbitbwouks need to be a slim sexy suit...
The space suits in reality that we have are nerdy nerdy!!!

What does a space suit require? What's composition?
Well if your void has a sort of atmosphere, still don't know on that one, you can have a bit of fun with the suits I guess.

The guy from Guardians of the Galaxy just had a breathing mask deal and that was believable enough - although I have heard some people saw it wasn't plausible, coincidentally I'd just researched effects of exposure to space because of a scene in Gravity so I bought it.

Apparently you can survive for a little bit in space with no protective gear. Like a minute or so or something ridiculous - space doesn't just rip you to bits like I always thought it did. I guess the most important thing would be air supply so some sort of mask would be a definite. Temperature is another big factor, space is cold.

I think pressure would have to be dealt with to make it properly believable, why not have a pressure layer, like a single molecule thick sort of thing, I have been looking for the word but I cant find it.

If you had a super thin pressure layer and a breathing mask then everything else wold be optional. Like near a star doing work on the outside of the ship might not require much thermal protection, a bit farther out you could even use a thick coat. Armor for battles, jet packs for flying, anything you can imagine.
 

cgsmith

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Ray McCarthy

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The space suits in reality that we have are nerdy nerdy!!!

What does a space suit require? What's composition?
There are skinny suits possible. (prototypes are over 15 years ago!)
http://www.projectrho.com/public_html/rocket/spacesuits.php

I know enough about space, physics, engineering to know this is very good site.
Which is why I started a thread here on Writing Resources:
Writing stuff with SPACE?

Streams of oxygen in space isn't plausible unless it's a completely alternate reality with different physics. My space travel is very like sailing ship era in terms of time involved. The Jump Drive can do interstellar distances, but only works 10 to 20 light days from a star (i.e. beyond Neptune / Kupier belt). It takes months to a year to get that far off a Homeworld to Jump, then similar delay at other end to reach the Homeworld.

If you had planet based interstellar teleports you'd NEVER have space ships too, except maybe to deliver a remote teleport. You'd run trains / trucks etc through the teleports. That's why Niven's "known space" teleports (stepping plates) are essentially planet bound.

Diving suit has to take very MUCH more pressure, but it's inward, 1 Atmosphere every 22 ft of depth I think (or is it 30 ft?). The space suit can use only 20% pressure by using nearly pure oxygen, so only 1/5th of an atmosphere outward. The suit needs to not balloon, and strong enough for 1/5th atmosphere. The strong enough is easy, but arm pits, inside of knees/elbows, crotch and under breast without a very elasticated sport support bra is a problem. So movement at joints is biggest issue. The suit can be double skin and stiffer outer than inner. Can even be zip closed, as the flap has air pressure on inside to seal it. Think wet suit with plastic panels and internal tubes to add stiffness and carry coolant. Side facing sun is very hot and facing away is very cold.
 

Mirannan

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There are at least two exotic possibilities that might allow breathable air between planets. One is the situation in Stephen Baxter's "Ring" in which the action is set in an alternate universe where gravity is around ten orders of magnitude stronger than in the real universe - allowing all manner of interesting possibilities.

The other is even more brain-melting. Story set on the outside of a galactic-scale Dyson sphere lit by numerous suns in orbit. Gravity would be almost zero, but the air layer could be dozens to hundreds of lightyears deep.
 

Ray McCarthy

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Gravity would be almost zero, but the air layer could be dozens to hundreds of lightyears deep.
It would "gravitate" to the stars and Planets. Also start to clump and form gas giants.

Story set on the outside of a galactic-scale Dyson
You mean inside?
Given the size of a Galaxy, that's pretty implausible. Even a solid surface orbit of mars size sphere is impossible. That's why Larry Niven did the ring, though even it has problems only solved by handwavium. In book two (Dyson and others did give some advice), he retcons some details to make it more plausible. It's still probably impossible, but less obviously so. It's good fun.

James White's "Federation World" Dyson Sphere is impossible, but a good read. His Sector General books are more plausible.

There is no shortage of stars and planets, so it's not obvious why any Civilisation would attempt a Ringworld or Dyson Sphere.
 

Mirannan

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Oh, Ray, I agree. A solid Dyson sphere is impossible even at solar system scale. It would have to be made of some sort of unobtainium - maybe something like Xeelee construction material. Regarding the instability of an air layer - well, someone would have to have built the sphere in the first place, so they would have thought of that? And there wouldn't necessarily have to be any stars or planets within the air layer.

Why would they attempt a Dyson sphere or ringworld? Well, one reason would be showing off; another would be to use available mass more efficiently and capture more sunlight. (Incidentally, a Dyson sphere as envisaged by Dyson himself would be better described as a Dyson swarm made of a few trillion individual habitats/orbital factories/power stations.)

A planet is a very inefficient way, in terms of mass budget, of providing living space. It's also rather difficult to leave it.
 

tinkerdan

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This doesn't necessarily have to be so::
If you had planet based interstellar teleports you'd NEVER have space ships too, except maybe to deliver a remote teleport. You'd run trains / trucks etc through the teleports. That's why Niven's "known space" teleports (stepping plates) are essentially planet bound.
::In fact I'd argue, even predict, that if teleportation is achieved it will become such a national security issue that it won't be used until it's heavily regulated and there might be many other forms of conventional transport because some people might not want to go through the TSA at the teleportation terminals.
 

Ray McCarthy

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it won't be used until it's heavily regulated
Good luck on that once someone leaks the Design, or some advanced Aliens are the ones selling it to all comers. :)
However:
1) It's probably impossible.
2) If it is possible, then probably only in deep space, and likely limitations on how close portals can be to each other.

I'm only guessing though.

But yes, if I did have planetary teleports with trains/trucks/pedestrians in a story, it would have
a) Serious security
b) triple door airlocks at each end (pressure difference, bugs, spores, seeds, birds, animals, insects etc), apart from the security issue.
 

tinkerdan

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It was 7:35 AM and Dirk was sitting down to breakfast when the alarm went off. He'd put a marker in his book; if he had an e-book he'd just let it sleep, but he loved the crinkle of real paper and that tickle of the fingertips when separating the pages. The alert was a standard unlicensed Teleporter signal and they were out in five, while his cooling oatmeal kept his book company. The chopper lifted and Anna, his pilot, started up the scan-ware to find which platforms had triggered. Her finger went from tower 9 to 12 to 10. There's a city wide system set to alarm to any signal originating outside of Tele-Transport Systems terminals. "Pretty close to the main business district. What have they got going on there today?" Dirks fingers flew across the panel and he cursed before he punched the call button. "Oh great: festival days they probably have the park set up with some concerts. Actual: Who do we have on the ground?"

"Units 357, 204, and 531."

"Have two check the pavilions and have Eric and Tam in 531 see if there are any stages in the park set up a bit high or sprawling. That might be enough room for an illegal terminal." When he finished instructions to dispatch Dirk looked at Anna. Her face went from crumpled concentration to one eyebrow lifting. "What ya got Annie?"

"It’s the GoodRip Electronics dirigible. Damn, they must just be getting started, but it's still pretty early. If they expect enough eyes out there to advertise, that might mean some major crowds already and our ground people might have trouble getting to those places." She kept her eyes mostly up front as they cut through the morning air, with an occasional glance at her instruments. "Yea; their still pretty low, I'll have to keep an eye on that until they get more height. They take up a lot of airspace and that one looks pretty large."

"Well, let’s loop around the area and look for any huge rigs that might have a mobile on the run." Dirk is thinking something overlarge and if the roads are full then they might be crowded and delayed. It has to be pretty large for a teleporter and even more so if they might be trying to teleport anything of consequence. Dirk strained against the restrain as he bobbed his head around."Roads used to be much simpler through here. Heart of the city and it's undergone a good number of triple-bypasses. Still it might be hard to hide something that big under a bridge." He picked up his binoculars and fiddled a second while trying to focus. He moved the view up and caught the balloon. "That is a big one. Yea, it's riding pretty low right now; they might be getting started. Or: maybe they're overloaded."

"What're ya thinking boss?" Anna's glance swipes his way as she steadies her flight and she looks out at the dirigible, with what could be a look of hunger.

"How close can you get us?"

"Close as you want, boss."

"I don't want them to go any higher; we may have to find a place to force them down." Dirk punched the call button for dispatch. "Actual get me the head honcho over at GoodRip Electronics and find out why their up here so early. Find out if all their paperwork is in order." He let up on the switch and gazed outward again. He waved his hand then put it palm up and lifting. "Take us up above them where they can still see us and we'll see if they stop ascending."

The red light on Dirks console flared and the speaker blared loud. "This is Actual to Birds-Eye seven, Darrel Colt CEO of GoodRip is on the air and he wants to know what we're talking about. He says his ship hasn't left the ground yet and won't get out there for another hour and a half."

"Bingo." Dirk pushed the button with one hand while his other deployed the crown with visual sights for external ordnance. "Actual notify all units that we're going to attempt to bring this airship down into River Front Park, or as close as we can maneuver. I want some emergency units on hand just in case."

Dirk shook his head, this was the third alarm this week for illicit Teleporter signal usage; his job was getting to be more fire fighting than deterrent. It was definitely more than the usual and if he didn't get to the bottom of this new insurgence, someone at Transit Authority would be after his hide.
 
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Piousflea84

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Magic gets introduced later on in my book, as a sort of hidden thing… As such I want to keep it somewhat scientific till that point. This is integral to my plot.

My world is set in a very futuristic setting.
There are planets, and originally I had panned on calling them realms, and travel was quite simple. There are teleport stations, so you can simply go shopping down the block or across the galaxy in seconds.

Then I decided I wanted space travel, because it opens a lot of doors, to wars in the void as well as space pirates and all sort of fun things that are coming into my head. So I made it that the teleporting is short ranged and limited…

Because my story is truly magical later on, I wanted the void to be like the ocean... i found this:
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/SpaceIsAnOcean

I got this because I like stories where the characters seem to be able to breath out in the void filled with colors and debris flying through their hair… ahhh! sailing among the stars…

The problem is, I need it to sound scientific in the beginning as magic is not yet introduced.
Can I possibly get away with saying, the debris and stars emit oxygen and allows people to breath?

Perhaps this is too fake…
Does this even sound plausible?

My other idea was to make pockets of air or streamers that you can breath in. So its not everywhere… Coincidentally these streamers perhaps can help with FTL travel…
I dunno I think I could use some help here…
Im looking for a way to have starships be able to attack each other by swinging across ships! definitely cooler than a tractor beam…
My question would be: what do you mean by "somewhat scientific"?

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is about as non-plausible as anything this side of Looney Tunes, but they make good use of the "scientific style" of art and writing. Earth Technology (such as Iron Man, Helicarrier) uses a "James Bond" visual style while alien technology (Loki's Scepter, the Tesseract) borrow from the "JJ Abrams Star Trek" visual style. This is also a strong verbal style - as in Banner and Stark talking about gamma rays in the first Avengers movie. They use "science-y" words without ever delving into anything resembling real-world science.

In a "scientific-styled" universe it's totally plausible for people to hang out in outer space with a little facemask, or even to breathe in a seemingly airless void (ie Thanos and Loki on Chitauri).

Based on your description of breathing out in the void and using the SpaceIsAnOcean trope, it sounds like you are trying to emulate the "Marvel Comics" style of borrowing from the appearance of science without using any actual science. That's perfectly fine, and can be a lot of fun (as it is with Marvel Comics).

The key is that you don't try too hard to explain your cartoon-science. As soon as people start wondering how Iron Man can make such tight maneuvers without Tony passing out from G-forces, or how the Incredible Hulk gets around the conservation of mass, it all stops making sense.
 

Ray McCarthy

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I have a suspicion that until recently all Comic Superheroes are either:
Aliens / Gods /Magic (Superman, Wonder woman, Thor, Shadow )
Created by Radiation accidents (Spiderman and irradiated spider, Hulk, Fantastic Four, )
People with unlikely gadgets due to HUGE wealth (Batman, Iron man)
Evolution Mutation (X-men)

Science is only in it in a 1930s handwavium popular science sense of either "Radiation can do anything" or "Enough money and you can make ANY gadget". The origins are in the 1930s after all. It's largely visual and action and translates badly to pure text. E.E. "Doc" Smith's 1928 to 1960s Space Opera is the closest decent text versions. Flash Gordon is like a poor copy of E.E. "Doc" Smith, made for Saturday morning 1930s cinema.
 

shamguy4

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Right so I'm not trying to be very heavy on the science. It's just that magic gets introduced in my book later and I need to make sure there's a differentiation between travel by magic and travel by science.

Meaning there are those who hate magic. So they need a form of travel that they claim is scientific.
 
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