Tomonaga (Tomonaga@xtra.co.nz)
Fri, 24 Mar 2000 13:52:28 +1200


Neil Baumgardner wrote:

> I still kinda curious about this one, especially with regard to 0080. Any comment,
> Mark, others?
>
> Neil Baumgardner
>

If you were referring to the spherical structures seen in Bernies initial attack, then
they are definitely not oil refineries. On top of Z's explanation of alternative
energy use in colonies and the impracticality of colonies being dependent on Earth
based petroleum, oil refineries use fractionating columns to separate different
petroleum products and so have tall slim cylindrical structures like chimneys. Also
the last place you want to build an oil refinery is right in the middle of a city and
in an enclosed colony enviornment.

Large volumes of liquid petroleum products are usually stored in cylindrical
structures. Spherical tanks such as the one in 0080 are usually used to store gases.

There are nuclear powerplants that use the spherical cooling 'tower' instead of the
more common cylindrical or conical designs. But the fact that the whole facility is
destroyed in Bernie's attack without any radiation leaking inside the colony suggests
that the spherical structures store gas. The fact that the facility exploded
relatively tamely and didn't destroy the whole colony suggests that the gas being
stored isn't hydrogen. My guess is that they store helium or some other
non-combustible gas.

 Also considering the oil crisis in the 70s and the fact that it was/is well known
that the world's oil supply is going to run out in a matter of decades. Either the
world's petroleum supply probably has been completely depleted in the UC world, or the
new technologies completely removed the need for petroleum products, or both.

Tet

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