-Z- (z@gundam.com)
Tue, 13 Jun 2000 20:59:24 -0700


> -----Original Message-----
> From: owner-gundam@1u.aeug.org [mailto:owner-gundam@1u.aeug.org]On
> Behalf Of Lim Jyue
> Sent: Tuesday, June 13, 2000 01:07
> To: gundam@aeug.org
> Subject: RE: [gundam] Colony Drop

> Can I drool now? (^_^)

Did I mention the 1GHz Pentium III/256MB/40GB HD/Windows 98 SE machine sitting
next to me?

NOW you can drool. (*_-)

> >No, what I was intimating was that the rocks would be drawn to the Lagrange
> >point proper, while the colonies would be well out of the way in their halo
> >orbits.
>
> Oh. Will the Lagrange points be considered navigational hazards for
> spacecrafts?

Only in the sense that loose debris from the colony building effort will tend to
gather at the Lagrange points, just as the Trojan asteroids did around Jupiter.
But, again, the colonies are in orbit well outside these naturally occurring
"shoal zones" and spacecraft will be steering well clear of them as well.

It could be handy if you want to stage the old "we'll lose them in the asteroid
field" gag in a Gundam story, though.

> From your description, it sounds like the farmsats are like
> miniature colony cylinders devoted to plants. Did I get that right? This
> makes it sound as though the farmsats are children of the big cylinders,
> tethered to the main cylinder but spinning on its own (if necessary) to
> create gravity within the farmsat.

Each of the 72 farmsats is as big, if not larger, than an "Island One" Bernal
sphere. The original plan was that the hubs of these "hatbox" cylinders would
be mounted on the fixed ring and that each farmsat would rotate at 2 RPM to
produce one gee at the hull. Things got confused when the artwork made it
appear that the mirrors were anchored to the ring, is all.

By the way, in Gundam, the farmsat ring is shown anchored to the far end, BEHIND
the mirrors, more often than not.

> But this makes the ring little more than a stablizing structure --
> for commute, it's likely that any workers within the farmsats need to go EVA
> in order to get in and out.

That would prove deucedly awkward and might result in a lot of freeze-dried
produce.

> >For that matter, it could be covered with photoelectric cells
> and turned into a
> >power source for the farmsat or even the colony proper. You
> could even mount
> >another parabolic mirror and put a full-blown solar power
> station on the
> >Sunward side of each farmsat.
>
> This is a very good idea! =)
>
> >As I recall, a village in Finland had to be evacuated because it was in the
> >beam path of a Soviet super long range radar.
>
> The radar was that deadly to humans?

When I worked on the F-106 fighter interceptor, we wore little neon lamps that
would light up from the microwave flux if we walked into an active "super
search" radar beam. That was a little airborne job, but it could punch out a
signal that would paint a target 200 miles away. Like exposure to X-rays and
other ionizing radiation, the effect is cumulative.

> >There were actually two such initiatives. The first was called "Smart Rocks"
> >about the size of a basketball with enough smarts to target radio
transmissions.
>
> These things won't even need a warhead, right? Coming down straight
> from, let's say GEO, it allows all its gravitational potential energy to be
> converted into kinetic energy. Even given loss of velocity via friction, the
> impact velocity should be still great enough to leave a significant crater
> -- sort of like a miniature colony drop.

Just so. It takes considerable expenditure of fuel and energy to try and knock
them out of the sky before they hit, so you get a free ride to the target while
the enemy is forced to expend valuable resources to deflect or destroy the
incoming missiles.

-Z-

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