Blackeagle (
Thu, 11 May 2000 10:53:22 MST

>I can try and comment on 1 and 2 but I'm not sure about 3
>1. I assume that trees would grow straight up since there is no wind
>inside a colony. The atmosphere would be moving in the same direction and
>speed as the inside of the colony so anyone or thing would feel that there
>is no wind. This however can cause problems from what scientist learned at
>the BioSphere-2. The scientist did everything they could to create a self
>contained world except for one thing, they did not create any internal
>mechanisms for creating wind. So, any tree that grew over 25 feet became
>very prone to tipping over. Apparently, wind is a big factor in tree
>growth. As the wind moves the growing tree this cause the outer bark to
>strengthen so that the tree can support its own weight. So anyone working
>on a colony should consider a mechanism for creating wind to help in tree

Actually, the temperature differential (one end of the colony is allways
pointing the sun, while the other is allways in shadow) would produce a
constant flow of wind, which would be turned into a corkscrew pattern by the
corolis force. See the excellent High Frontier page for details on this and
almost every other aspect of space colony life in the Gundam universe:

>What about the momentum of the rotating colony, would that cause the tree
>to bend. I would say no, because anything attached to the colony would
>obtain the same momentum as the rotating colony.
>2. What your talking about is the coriolis (I think that's spelled right)
>effect. And the answer is, Yes. This can cause problems with the
>inhabitants when the rotation is less then 1 rotation per 60 seconds. Look
>at the spining rides at the amusement parks, they rotate more then once per
>60 seconds and the effect is dizziness, and vomiting. That speed is fun
>for a ride but not fun to live in.
>To generate 1-Gee the minimum you would need for 1 rotation per 60 seconds
>is a radius of about 900 meters. So you would want a colony with a radius
>greater then 900 meters. By increasing the radius you also increase the
>rotation time needed to generate 1G. For example, a colony of 1,500 meters
>would rotate once every 77.7 seconds

The O'Neil Island 3 design (on which the UC Gundam colonies are based) has a
diameter of 6.4km and rotates once every two minutes to produce earth normal
gravity (though the animation exaggerates this).

>3. For this question, the only thing I can think of 'Is the asteroid large
>enough to spin to create artificial gravity?' If these things are too big
>they can create their own very weird artificial gravity which would be very
>uncomfortable for anyone trying to live on it.
>--- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---
>Vince Leon

Go Wildcats!

>-----Original Message-----
>From: James Boren []
>Sent: Wednesday, May 10, 2000 10:31 PM
>Subject: [gundam] Colony questions
>1. Would trees grow straight up, or bend in a colony?
>2. Would increasing the diameter of the colony lessen the weird
>side-effects of the rotation-induced "gravity"?
>3. How are the living spaces carved out of asteroids like Luna II,
>and A-Bau-A-Qu? I mean are the floors all stacked on top of one
>another, or are they all arranged so that the ceilings all point
>away from the center of the asteroid? A-Bau-A-Qu must have a strange
>gravity field considering it's shape.

Chris Upchurch a.k.a. Blackeagle

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