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PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 3:40 am 
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Grashtel wrote:
Kendrakirai wrote:
*I'm* not, I'm saying that if that doesn't happen, there's nothing we can do with bare rock anyhow, and more energy would be spent trying to store it somewhere than just kicking it off into the sun.

Orbital mechanics makes kicking stuff into the Sun a lot harder than you think. You can't just give something a little nudge sunward, you need to radically change its orbit which takes a lot of energy, IIRC almost as much if not more so than ejecting the object from the system entirely.

And "bare rock" has a fair number of uses like radiation/meteoroid shielding and structural material (not as good as metal, but its a lot cheaper).

This came up for me recently, I think it's around three or four times more energy to hit the sun than hit escape velocity.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:24 am 
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ExenTrik wrote:
Grashtel wrote:
Kendrakirai wrote:
*I'm* not, I'm saying that if that doesn't happen, there's nothing we can do with bare rock anyhow, and more energy would be spent trying to store it somewhere than just kicking it off into the sun.

Orbital mechanics makes kicking stuff into the Sun a lot harder than you think. You can't just give something a little nudge sunward, you need to radically change its orbit which takes a lot of energy, IIRC almost as much if not more so than ejecting the object from the system entirely.

And "bare rock" has a fair number of uses like radiation/meteoroid shielding and structural material (not as good as metal, but its a lot cheaper).

This came up for me recently, I think it's around three or four times more energy to hit the sun than hit escape velocity.


Funny thing about interplanetary space; you can detonate a nuke and *nobody will care* because nobody is going to be remotely close enough to be affected by it.

Nukes have an extreme amount of energy, but are wholly inappropriate for any other constructive use, such as getting off the planet. As for carbon and silicon, there are far easier ways to gather it than grinding an asteroid to pieces, and their ubiquity means you'll generally want to use something closer to where you're going to use them. Once again, moving a million tons of rock takes a lot of energy and care. Even more than I was aware of, apparently. That just makes it even HARDER to move these husks someplace else and park them in a gravitationally stable-slash-null location, since you'd have to apply the same amount of force in the perfectly opposite direction or else run the risk of them drifting out of the area and into something important. Like a colony, or into a decaying orbit that'll land it on Wyoming.

Gravel is more *navigation hazard* than use, too. A fleck of paint at the right speeds can hull the ISS.

This is of course moot, if/when we develop inertialess drives, gravity manipulation, etc. but at that point we probably aren't going to have much in the way of waste at all. We'll be in a similar realm of technology to that in Schlock Mercenary, and be able to simply convert what waste material we have into something else through fusion by sheer gravitational pressure, or simply use the mass for power in annihilation plants.

How do you think Annie plants make PTUs? They compress normal matter, whatever it may be, into an element that is super-atomically-massive, yet stable, through gravitational force. That's why they need Annie plants to make them; only they (well, and MAYBE some form of controlled antimatter reaction, though from what i can tell, this isnt a thing thats possible/feasible in Schlock) can provide enough power to control gravity with the right finesse.

.....except maybe a very large fraction of the total output of a star, but that's a level of engineering that's been effectively lost, save the F'sherl-Ganni and their Buuthandis.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:23 pm 
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Kendrakirai wrote:
ExenTrik wrote:
Grashtel wrote:
This came up for me recently, I think it's around three or four times more energy to hit the sun than hit escape velocity.


Funny thing about interplanetary space; you can detonate a nuke and *nobody will care* because nobody is going to be remotely close enough to be affected by it.

Nukes have an extreme amount of energy, but are wholly inappropriate for any other constructive use, such as getting off the planet. As for carbon and silicon, there are far easier ways to gather it than grinding an asteroid to pieces, and their ubiquity means you'll generally want to use something closer to where you're going to use them. Once again, moving a million tons of rock takes a lot of energy and care. Even more than I was aware of, apparently. That just makes it even HARDER to move these husks someplace else and park them in a gravitationally stable-slash-null location, since you'd have to apply the same amount of force in the perfectly opposite direction or else run the risk of them drifting out of the area and into something important. Like a colony, or into a decaying orbit that'll land it on Wyoming.

Gravel is more *navigation hazard* than use, too. A fleck of paint at the right speeds can hull the ISS.

This is of course moot, if/when we develop inertialess drives, gravity manipulation, etc. but at that point we probably aren't going to have much in the way of waste at all. We'll be in a similar realm of technology to that in Schlock Mercenary, and be able to simply convert what waste material we have into something else through fusion by sheer gravitational pressure, or simply use the mass for power in annihilation plants.

How do you think Annie plants make PTUs? They compress normal matter, whatever it may be, into an element that is super-atomically-massive, yet stable, through gravitational force. That's why they need Annie plants to make them; only they (well, and MAYBE some form of controlled antimatter reaction, though from what i can tell, this isnt a thing thats possible/feasible in Schlock) can provide enough power to control gravity with the right finesse.

.....except maybe a very large fraction of the total output of a star, but that's a level of engineering that's been effectively lost, save the F'sherl-Ganni and their Buuthandis.


On energy.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interplanetary_Transport_Network

L4 and L5 are basically small(ish) gravity wells you can drop things in. L's 1 through 3 are hills, where a little push, or just rocking a bit, sends you down it, one direction or another.

L4 and L5 are what I think of as the Trojan points. From a quick check of Wikipedia, this is what others think of as a Trojan point, too.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:31 am 
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So, your suggestion for moving played out asteroids and outright garbage is, instead of either leaving them where they are or firing them into the sun/out of the systems elliptical plane via handy dandy one-shot nuke....is to set them on a centuries long meander through the solar systems natural gravitational space lanes until they finally reach a point we'll be wanting to load up with space colonies.

Let's think about this for a second, shall we?


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 12:17 pm 
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Kendrakirai wrote:
So, your suggestion for moving played out asteroids and outright garbage is, instead of either leaving them where they are or firing them into the sun/out of the systems elliptical plane via handy dandy one-shot nuke....is to set them on a centuries long meander through the solar systems natural gravitational space lanes until they finally reach a point we'll be wanting to load up with space colonies.

Let's think about this for a second, shall we?

Well, that's the problem--this has been thought about. By better minds than mine, to be sure.

Nukes don't make good propulsion. In an atmosphere, a nuclear bomb produces a shock-wave which could in theory create thrust, but that doesn't work in vacuum. In a vacuum, all you get is radiation and radioactive debris. Yes, I know about ideas like Project Orion--it's not going to work, at least not as originally designed. The current designs would take more in materials to build than can be gotten from a typical asteroid--the mass of the asteroid builds faster than the propulsion available, assuming the new designs work at all.

Firing debris into the Sun costs more than leaving that debris in place. Aiming that debris towards a Trojan point is not as expensive, but still more expensive than leaving it where it is. But, if the debris has to be moved, sending it to a Trojan orbit is going to be cheaper than sending it into the Sun. (Plus which, there is the "waste not, want not" factor--anything we send into the Sun is gone.)

Optimally, the best thing to do with the tailings of asteroid mining will be to leave it in place, and frankly I don't know why we wouldn't simply do that. But if it has to be moved, moving it to a Trojan is still the cheaper option.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 12:38 pm 
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I thought this line of conversation was originally about all the other waste a civilization generates while it runs. Organic detritus that wasn't recyclable, spacecraft junk, and other stuff like that.

I don't know how it got into talking about mined out asteroids. I mean I think it's pretty obvious that any asteroids designated for mining would either be moved to somewhere convenient, in which case they are already where we want them, or mined in place, in which case why not leave the remnants in the same place where they haven't been disturbing anything for millions of years.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 11:03 pm 
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Black Sheep wrote:
Kendrakirai wrote:
So, your suggestion for moving played out asteroids and outright garbage is, instead of either leaving them where they are or firing them into the sun/out of the systems elliptical plane via handy dandy one-shot nuke....is to set them on a centuries long meander through the solar systems natural gravitational space lanes until they finally reach a point we'll be wanting to load up with space colonies.

Let's think about this for a second, shall we?

Well, that's the problem--this has been thought about. By better minds than mine, to be sure.

Nukes don't make good propulsion. In an atmosphere, a nuclear bomb produces a shock-wave which could in theory create thrust, but that doesn't work in vacuum. In a vacuum, all you get is radiation and radioactive debris. Yes, I know about ideas like Project Orion--it's not going to work, at least not as originally designed. The current designs would take more in materials to build than can be gotten from a typical asteroid--the mass of the asteroid builds faster than the propulsion available, assuming the new designs work at all.

Firing debris into the Sun costs more than leaving that debris in place. Aiming that debris towards a Trojan point is not as expensive, but still more expensive than leaving it where it is. But, if the debris has to be moved, sending it to a Trojan orbit is going to be cheaper than sending it into the Sun. (Plus which, there is the "waste not, want not" factor--anything we send into the Sun is gone.)

Optimally, the best thing to do with the tailings of asteroid mining will be to leave it in place, and frankly I don't know why we wouldn't simply do that. But if it has to be moved, moving it to a Trojan is still the cheaper option.

The Jupiter Trojans are already full of asteroid trash. The L4 and L5 points naturally collect such things, why not toss a little more in there.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 25, 2017 1:22 pm 
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Arcanestomper wrote:
I thought this line of conversation was originally about all the other waste a civilization generates while it runs. Organic detritus that wasn't recyclable, spacecraft junk, and other stuff like that.

I don't know how it got into talking about mined out asteroids. I mean I think it's pretty obvious that any asteroids designated for mining would either be moved to somewhere convenient, in which case they are already where we want them, or mined in place, in which case why not leave the remnants in the same place where they haven't been disturbing anything for millions of years.


Actual non-recyclable garbage like that is actually pretty easy to take care of in space. Since you don't have the sheer mass of space mountains to concern you, and there's really quite little that CAN'T be in some way reconstituted into something else, even without something like nanodisassemblers, sticking it into a compactor, then into a ferromagnetic case (perhaps with a small nuclear-powered beacon to prevent navigational problems or holing a cruise ship) will let you simply load it into a mass driver and fire it into something nobody cares about, like Jupiter, Saturn, the sun, or Wyoming. Or out of something, like the elliptical plane of the solar system.

Yeah, Sir Isaac Newton may be the meanest son of a bitch in space but we're still talking tens of thousands of years, and the odds of it hitting anything are - if you'll pardon the term - astronomical. Even smaller is the chance it'll intersect a planet and NOT burn up. If you're still worried about firing something out of the solar system, you can rig a nuke into the case with it and detonate it once it's a safe distance away.

Or for junk on a planetary surface, I've always wondered why we don't dig really, really deep, or into the side of a volcano or magma pocket and just....throw stuff in, letting the planet itself be our incinerator. I'm sure there's a really good reason for it besides "we can't dig that deep yet" but I can't come up with one.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 25, 2017 6:35 pm 
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Volcanoes are rather dangerous, what with all the ash, poisonous gases, lava and the quakes. Not to mention the risk of a major eruption destroying your trash-disposal infrastructure and any people working there. And as for digging into the earth's crust, well, we really can't dig that deep yet, far as I know. We have to find areas where magma is already close to the surface, and then you run into the risks I mentioned in the first two sentences.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 25, 2017 6:40 pm 
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For that matter if you're digging down to magma, then you run the risk of creating an artificial volcano as your tunnel is likely a lot less pressurized than the magma.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 5:05 am 
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Anything you try to burn with lava will just sit on top, it's not like it sinks down and get mixed in. We're still talking about a bunch of rock, remember. Not really any advantage over regular incineration except the energy bill, and pollutants go into new earth instead of landfills or other treatment.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 5:23 am 
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ExenTrik wrote:
Anything you try to burn with lava will just sit on top, it's not like it sinks down and get mixed in. We're still talking about a bunch of rock, remember. Not really any advantage over regular incineration except the energy bill, and pollutants go into new earth instead of landfills or other treatment.


Well, fire it down with a railgun then. Give it some wellie, as they say, to push it under the surface until the casing burns away.

Well, whatever, pretty okay reasons not to use the earths mantle, I suppose.

Another childhood idea dashed on the shores of logic. :)


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 4:02 pm 
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Kendrakirai wrote:
ExenTrik wrote:
Anything you try to burn with lava will just sit on top, it's not like it sinks down and get mixed in. We're still talking about a bunch of rock, remember. Not really any advantage over regular incineration except the energy bill, and pollutants go into new earth instead of landfills or other treatment.


Well, fire it down with a railgun then. Give it some wellie, as they say, to push it under the surface until the casing burns away.

Well, whatever, pretty okay reasons not to use the earths mantle, I suppose.

Another childhood idea dashed on the shores of logic. :)

Yeah holes are impossible to maintain long long before you get to molten rock. Then you're just talking about a deep and narrow landfill, and that isn't worth the extra effort.

As an aside though, you might find it interesting that we have incredibly powerful self contained tunnel boring machines, and that when we're done with them instead of finding some way to extract them we simply set them off down into the earth as far as they'll go before running out of fuel. A poignant end for a rather impressive and somewhat frightening device.


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