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Online Comics => Escape From Terra => Topic started by: jayphailey on May 08, 2010, 05:18:32 am

Title: Lunar Towers
Post by: jayphailey on May 08, 2010, 05:18:32 am
Hey folks,

Sorry.  Nerdy nit pick, here.

The current story arc features tall towers built on the Lunar surface.

Any such towers would be blasted by solar radiation - specifically ionizing radiation.  Residents would suffer brain and nerve damage after long exposure.  I am not sure how long it would take to show effects.

A solar flare would wipe out anyone living in the towers.

You'd need something like 6 feet or more of dirt or rock to absorb the radiation and prevent damage. -  burying lunar ihabitations would also make sealing and temperature control easier.

-*-

There was an experimental dealy called the M2P2 -
http://www.ess.washington.edu/Space/M2P2/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnetic_sail#Mini-magnetospheric_plasma_propulsion


The accounts I read said that these magnetic sail blocks ionzing radiation.  however I have heard nothing further about that... Not that I have looked really.

Jay ~Meow!~
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Brugle on May 08, 2010, 10:13:08 am
I'd guess that the walls and windows would be thick enough (and made of appropriate material) to block harmful EM radiation and most ions.  In the rare case of dangerous ion emission (perhaps from a coronal mass ejection headed this way), a few minutes warning should be sufficient for everyone to get to a place with better shielding (probably the core of the tower).

Of course, there may be better technology available in EFT's time.  Sandy?
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: SandySandfort on May 08, 2010, 10:36:23 am
I'd guess that the walls and windows would be thick enough (and made of appropriate material) to block harmful EM radiation and most ions.  In the rare case of dangerous ion emission (perhaps from a coronal mass ejection headed this way), a few minutes warning should be sufficient for everyone to get to a place with better shielding (probably the core of the tower).

Of course, there may be better technology available in EFT's time.  Sandy?

Like you said. Thick shielding and safe rooms in the core* plus maybe new technology such as ultra-powerful electromagnetic fields or the like.

* Last night on Discovery or NatGeo or wherever, I saw a show about the Burj Dubai, the tallest building ever erected. In addition to internal firefighting equipment, there are fire resistant refuges areas every 30 floors or so. Residents will not leave the building in the even of fire (impossible). They will go to the fire resistant rooms, each of which has its own air supply, and await rescue after the fire is put out.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: ZeissIkon on May 13, 2010, 04:01:52 pm
The radiation problem in the Lunar towers is exactly the same one present in all interplanetary spacecraft (albeit, given constant boost, for much longer time on the Moon), and to all dwellers in either surface domes or ships (or Ghetti) in the asteroid belt (though the Belt gets some 1/16 the radiation level compared to the Lunar surface, over time it still adds up).

An earlier story arc has already suggested nanobots exist to prevent long-term adaptation to low- or microgravity (bone density loss and muscle atrophy, for instance) that would make return to a full 1 G field impossible for life; nanobots complex enough to do those things could probably be programmed to excise radiation damaged cells.  Brain damage is the only issue that simplistic approach won't solve; the radiation level at Earth orbit would likely have an effect, over time, similar to staying drunk for years on end.  Better nanobots, capable of repairing damaged cells, would prevent all damage below some threshold level that exceeds their ability to cope.

Magnetic shielding deflects charged particles to the magnetic poles, just as does the Earth's magnetic field; those (solar protons and electrons, also the primary risk from coronal mass ejections and flare events) are the most serious risk, and using magnetic shields to avoid the need for heavy mass shields keeps the risk from cosmic rays manageable (say, by nanobots).
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: SandySandfort on May 13, 2010, 05:17:41 pm
The radiation problem in the Lunar towers is exactly the same one present in all interplanetary spacecraft (albeit, given constant boost, for much longer time on the Moon), and to all dwellers in either surface domes or ships (or Ghetti) in the asteroid belt (though the Belt gets some 1/16 the radiation level compared to the Lunar surface, over time it still adds up).

Do they? That is the orthodox belief, "any radiation is dangerous." The problem is there there is absolutely no experimental evidence to support that assertion. It is only extrapolated backwards from high radiation dosages. "Well, if a lot is bad for you, then a little is bad for you too, only less so."

To the extent that there has been any research on the subject, the opposite has been shown to be true. That is, a little radiation (up to about 100 times natural background radiation on the surface of the earth) is beneficial to your health, resistance to disease, mental functions, resistance to cancer, etc. See:

     http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiation_hormesis

Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: quadibloc on May 15, 2010, 01:20:21 pm
The problem is there there is absolutely no experimental evidence to support that assertion. It is only extrapolated backwards from high radiation dosages. "Well, if a lot is bad for you, then a little is bad for you too, only less so."
That makes sense not as something to assume as fact, but simply as a basis on which to set safety standards. We want to avoid adding even a slight chance of getting cancer, but there is no practical way to set up a study to measure the bad effects, if any, of very small amounts of radiation. So we work from what we know is the most pessimistic assumption.

Now I am surprised to hear that up to 100 times background is still in the area of hormesis (which word I first heard of, I think, from Heinlein - probably in Starship Troopers, or at least in a discussion somewhere of that story).
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: sams on May 15, 2010, 03:02:28 pm
Now I am surprised to hear that up to 100 times background is still in the area of hormesis (which word I first heard of, I think, from Heinlein - probably in Starship Troopers, or at least in a discussion somewhere of that story).

When Rico is stationed at the Sanctuary, the Federation Fleet Fortress, he have a discussion with a Pin head about the lack of enough radiation that might affect the primogeniture of the colonist. The idea is that radiation is driver force of evolution ... but like Rico say : I don't get the whole stuff and it would be easier if a trigger was involved
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Brugle on May 15, 2010, 06:03:48 pm
The problem is there there is absolutely no experimental evidence to support that assertion. It is only extrapolated backwards from high radiation dosages. "Well, if a lot is bad for you, then a little is bad for you too, only less so."
That makes sense not as something to assume as fact, but simply as a basis on which to set safety standards.
If we didn't know better, it might make sense to set safety standards using the linear no-threshold hypothesis.  But we do know better.

We want to avoid adding even a slight chance of getting cancer,
I'd gladly accept a slightly higher chance of getting cancer in exchange for something of greater value (for example, a larger reduction in other risks).  If you have an extreme fear of cancer then take whatever steps you think appropriate to ensure that you die from something else, but don't enlist the state to make us pay for your phobias.  (Since low levels of radiation may protect against cancer, the policies you appear to support may actually increase your (and our) cancer risk.)

but there is no practical way to set up a study to measure the bad effects, if any, of very small amounts of radiation.
As Sandy said in another context, think about how you'd solve the problem.  I know of at least 2 fundamentally different ways of studying the effects of low-level radiation on health, with several variations on each way.  Give your brain a chance--it may work better than you think.

SF author James P. Hogan has occasionally written about radiation hormesis:
http://jamesphogan.com/siteindex/keyword.php?key=687
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: SandySandfort on May 15, 2010, 10:38:20 pm
... but there is no practical way to set up a study to measure the bad effects, if any, of very small amounts of radiation...

Actually, there are any number of ways. Two that have actually been studied are cancer rates among shipyard workers who work on nuclear ships vs non-nuclear ships and the incidence of cancer around ground zero for the two bombs dropped on Japan.

My recollection is that the ship workers who were around radiation that was significantly higher than background had fewer incidents of cancer and other health problems than did their equivalent workers on non-nuclear ships.

In Japan, cancer was very high out to a certain distance from ground zero, then dropped off to extremely low levels in a sort of "sweet spot." Further out, the incidence of cancer increased again to national norms.

You know, people drown if they get too much water. Just to be on the safe side, we should outlaw water, because any level might be dangerous.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: terry_freeman on May 16, 2010, 05:32:23 am
Aye! We should totally ban dihydrogen monoxide

http://www.lhup.edu/~dsimanek/dhmo.htm

 ... or perhaps not.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: NemoUtopia on May 16, 2010, 09:49:23 am
As pointed out with water, consider too the 'trace elements' our body NEEDS for healthy function. The real issue with radiation is the type/mixture, and consider too the official definition of radiation is ANY process where energy travels through a medium or space to be absorbed by another body. What most people assosciate the word radiation with is Ionizing Radiation, which generally is harmful in even small amounts. Other types can be thought of like water and trace elements: we have a 'sweet spot' that is good for us, and then there's an absence that harms us and an abundance that harms us. The simplest example here is heat...you need heat, but too much causes varying degrees of injury. Others simply do not harm us below a certain threshold, but high exposure is lethal. Think X-rays and microwave radiation. It's yet another case where laymen get a small amount of information and draw incorrect all/nothing conclusions from them.

In the case of the lunar towers, I would expect there to be quite a few options at the given tech level. I would actually be surprised if the towers are not constructed to generate their own magnetic field...exact mechanism unknown, but the basic idea is the same as how Earth's magnetic field brings ionizing radiation to the poles. An absorbing or dispersing mechanism at the peak of the tower makes the most sense in this context. Advanced composite material glass with nanobots to absorb radiation and good old fashioned lead-lined walls with their own composite structures. With the presumed ability to handle anything short of a solar flare, the secured room scenario would cover that. All presumption, but reasonable considering what we know.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Brugle on May 16, 2010, 11:37:09 am
Ionizing Radiation, which generally is harmful in even small amounts.
Almost all of the evidence suggests that ionizing radiation is not harmful in small amounts, and much of the evidence suggests that ionizing radiation is beneficial in small amounts.  Of course, no amount of evidence will guarantee that a theory is true, but it is usually more reasonable to accept the evidence than to claim that the evidence is wrong.

Follow the link in reply #4 or follow some of the links from the page linked in reply #7.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: NemoUtopia on May 16, 2010, 01:54:33 pm
Ionizing Radiation, which generally is harmful in even small amounts.
Almost all of the evidence suggests that ionizing radiation is not harmful in small amounts, and much of the evidence suggests that ionizing radiation is beneficial in small amounts.  Of course, no amount of evidence will guarantee that a theory is true, but it is usually more reasonable to accept the evidence than to claim that the evidence is wrong.

Follow the link in reply #4 or follow some of the links from the page linked in reply #7.


I did, and they both contain qualifiers that the effect has not been (sufficiently) studied in humans. Additionally, what studies have been done show age variation. Ionizing radiation in humans is known to disrupt our biology, and there is conflicting evidence and debate concerning this. This isn't to say that we can't cope with certain harmful levels, or that the idea of building radioresistance through exposure is implausible. In fact I'd bet that it varies by the type of ionizing radiation, since they are very different...pulled off the top of my head [i.e. out my ass] I wouldn't be surprised controlled dosages of alpha radiation have little appreciable effect one way or the other, beta radiation in controlled exposure provides benefits, and gamma rays remain the big bad wolf. More evidence is needed to support any conclusion about low doses of radiation now that existing evidence has called assumptions into question...but suffice to say I won't be volunteering as a test subject.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: SandySandfort on May 16, 2010, 04:18:27 pm
I did, and they both contain qualifiers that the effect has not been (sufficiently) studied in humans. Additionally, what studies have been done show age variation. Ionizing radiation in humans is known to disrupt our biology, and there is conflicting evidence and debate concerning this. This isn't to say that we can't cope with certain harmful levels, or that the idea of building radioresistance through exposure is implausible. In fact I'd bet that it varies by the type of ionizing radiation, since they are very different...pulled off the top of my head [i.e. out my ass] I wouldn't be surprised controlled dosages of alpha radiation have little appreciable effect one way or the other, beta radiation in controlled exposure provides benefits, and gamma rays remain the big bad wolf. More evidence is needed to support any conclusion about low doses of radiation now that existing evidence has called assumptions into question...but suffice to say I won't be volunteering as a test subject.

Let me see if I have the right. For the sake of argument, let us say there are some qualifiers with regard to the beneficial effects of low-level ionizing radiation (more on this below). So are you saying that in a situation where no research has shown detrimental effects of radiation vs. some research that shows some benefit, you think it is prudent to avoid radiation? One would think the smart money would bet on the benefits.

At any rate, see this:

   http://www.radpro.com/641luckey.pdf

This paper includes citations of numerous studies including those of Japanese exposed to atomic bomb radiation and shipyard workers including 7 million person-years of exposed and control workers in nuclear shipyard and atomic bomb plants in Canada!

All the evidence points toward low-level ionizing radiation being good for you. No evidence suggest otherwise. As one of my friends said, "Americans are chronically gamma ray deficient." By the way, the same friend has Fiestaware dishes placed around where he works at his computer. He sits on it. FYI, Fietsaware used to be made with uranium paint to give it its red-orange color. The old stuff definitely puts out low-level gamma radiation.

Frankly, I do not understand why anyone would be resistent to the proponderence--make that, unanimity--of the scientific evidence.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: NemoUtopia on May 16, 2010, 07:17:14 pm
Let me see if I have the right. For the sake of argument, let us say there are some qualifiers with regard to the beneficial effects of low-level ionizing radiation (more on this below). So are you saying that in a situation where no research has shown detrimental effects of radiation vs. some research that shows some benefit, you think it is prudent to avoid radiation? One would think the smart money would bet on the benefits.

At any rate, see this:

   http://www.radpro.com/641luckey.pdf

This paper includes citations of numerous studies including those of Japanese exposed to atomic bomb radiation and shipyard workers including 7 million person-years of exposed and control workers in nuclear shipyard and atomic bomb plants in Canada!

All the evidence points toward low-level ionizing radiation being good for you. No evidence suggest otherwise. As one of my friends said, "Americans are chronically gamma ray deficient." By the way, the same friend has Fiestaware dishes placed around where he works at his computer. He sits on it. FYI, Fietsaware used to be made with uranium paint to give it its red-orange color. The old stuff definitely puts out low-level gamma radiation.

Frankly, I do not understand why anyone would be resistent to the proponderence--make that, unanimity--of the scientific evidence.

No, the unanimity and preponderance do not. I did read the Japanese study, and it does provide compelling evidence that there are tolerance limits. But the human radiation studies are large-scale without accounting for any (and I do mean any) other variable. I'm among the first people to tell you that these studies appear validatable and viable as well as that the FDA has set unreasonable limits and also to tell you that the LNT model is based on bad assumptions and terrible statistics. I'm also among the first people to tell you that this doesn't mean the new studies and considerations have done anything more than start off on a good foot. So let's start with "Oh, stewardess, I speak Statistician"

First factor: Deaths from radiation sickness appear to have to been treated as non-cancer deaths and therefore ignored by the study. This is a SERIOUS flaw in a study based on the idea of proving 'no-harm', even if it proves to indeed be like innoculation where the cost of saving X^(10Y) is a relatively minor Z. This also precludes the ability to determine risk factors for such a reaction. Additionally, the idea of surviving radiation sickness with proper medical care does not account for the level of said care.

Second factor: Cancer related death is treated as a static variable and does not appear to have been actually controlled for age and the actual type of death, despite the token chart on Page 11. The age of the victim at the time of exposure and the age at their time of death, as well as the cause of death itself, must be controlled for. It also assumes that cancer is the only risk-of-death situation with radiation (see above) and that all cause-of-deaths were accurately determined. Cells damaged by radiation or that decay prematurely because of damage to genetic structures have a variety of effects beyond cancer, most degeneration related as opposed to growth related. To their credit, their life-span figures seem to be solid evidence and account for variations in populations, and evidence DOES suggest that radiation damage tends to focus in what is referred to as 'junk DNA', reducing the risk of exposure having negative effects even within generations of future offspring.

Thirdly:
Quote from:  Page 10, Plutonium, third paragraph
Although the small number of subjects allows no statistical significance, the data suggest plutonium exposures are beneficial.
Without statistical significance (and their apparant lack of ability to run an alternate statistical test for small sample sizes, because they do exist) the data can suggest nothing, no matter how much you wish it do. Oh, do I know this pain personally.

Fourthly: The studies are based on source of radiation, not type of radiation. This is extremely significant, because isotope decay and other sources of ionizing radiation have very different effects on organisms, particularly humans, wearing a lead-rich safety apron and welding helment and one wearing no such protection. Nothing in the study suggests that this has been accounted for in estimates of exposure.

Fifth: The chain of study they refer to only begins at radiation at 1919. Before this time point, it only establishes concepts important to the understanding of the study in the use of mathematical models and assumptions. Radiation very likely does follow a check/v/U curve in terms of effect, but the effect it has is vastly different to mamalian biology than in plant life (we 'photosynthesize' vitamin D through a much different mechanism than plant photosynthesis). Similarly, the effect of ingested and induced toxins is very different than that of our body handling ionization.

Sixth: Factors that can cause spurrious correlation are varied and numerous. Earlier or later undocumented sources of radiation exposure, exposure to or existence of risk factors for other causes of death, availability of and quality of medical care, significant variations in diet between the control group and the study group...if you think any of these sound ridiculous (particularly the last), consider the following: fishers and port-city populations eat a different diet than inland farming and animal raising communities, which also varies from large inland cities. We already know how the difference between primary sources of meat and general level of ingestion affect health concerns.

So for clarity: these studies look promising, and I look forward to the results they yield. But it's going to take considerably more studies to convince me to enter that chamber, take that pill, get that shot, or let you get near me with that radiation gun. Since I plan on world travel [by airplane!] on top of that, including radiation study, I'll be sure to account for accurate estimates of self exposure when the time comes.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: SandySandfort on May 16, 2010, 07:34:40 pm
Fair enough. All your possible flaws are not to be taken lightly. Your reasoning is solid right up to the point where you discuss your real-world reaction to the threat or benefit of ionizing radiation.

Yes, our knowledge is incomplete, however I cannot understand why that means you would accept a clearly bogus assertion that all ionizing radiation is bad, at whatever level, over strong indications that this is not so. This is what I meant about the "smart money." I don't know the final truth, but the research strongly suggests that I am less likely to get cancer when exposed to low-level radiation than if I cut radiation completely out of my diet. There are no guarantees and so we are just playing the odds. I do not think the odds favor abstinence, but favor more radiation than I am getting from background. YMMV.

Let me see if I have the right. For the sake of argument, let us say there are some qualifiers with regard to the beneficial effects of low-level ionizing radiation (more on this below). So are you saying that in a situation where no research has shown detrimental effects of radiation vs. some research that shows some benefit, you think it is prudent to avoid radiation? One would think the smart money would bet on the benefits.

At any rate, see this:

   http://www.radpro.com/641luckey.pdf

This paper includes citations of numerous studies including those of Japanese exposed to atomic bomb radiation and shipyard workers including 7 million person-years of exposed and control workers in nuclear shipyard and atomic bomb plants in Canada!

All the evidence points toward low-level ionizing radiation being good for you. No evidence suggest otherwise. As one of my friends said, "Americans are chronically gamma ray deficient." By the way, the same friend has Fiestaware dishes placed around where he works at his computer. He sits on it. FYI, Fietsaware used to be made with uranium paint to give it its red-orange color. The old stuff definitely puts out low-level gamma radiation.

Frankly, I do not understand why anyone would be resistent to the proponderence--make that, unanimity--of the scientific evidence.

No, the unanimity and preponderance do not. I did read the Japanese study, and it does provide compelling evidence that there are tolerance limits. But the human radiation studies are large-scale without accounting for any (and I do mean any) other variable. I'm among the first people to tell you that these studies appear validatable and viable as well as that the FDA has set unreasonable limits and also to tell you that the LNT model is based on bad assumptions and terrible statistics. I'm also among the first people to tell you that this doesn't mean the new studies and considerations have done anything more than start off on a good foot. So let's start with "Oh, stewardess, I speak Statistician"

First factor: Deaths from radiation sickness appear to have to been treated as non-cancer deaths and therefore ignored by the study. This is a SERIOUS flaw in a study based on the idea of proving 'no-harm', even if it proves to indeed be like innoculation where the cost of saving X^(10Y) is a relatively minor Z. This also precludes the ability to determine risk factors for such a reaction. Additionally, the idea of surviving radiation sickness with proper medical care does not account for the level of said care.

Second factor: Cancer related death is treated as a static variable and does not appear to have been actually controlled for age and the actual type of death, despite the token chart on Page 11. The age of the victim at the time of exposure and the age at their time of death, as well as the cause of death itself, must be controlled for. It also assumes that cancer is the only risk-of-death situation with radiation (see above) and that all cause-of-deaths were accurately determined. Cells damaged by radiation or that decay prematurely because of damage to genetic structures have a variety of effects beyond cancer, most degeneration related as opposed to growth related. To their credit, their life-span figures seem to be solid evidence and account for variations in populations, and evidence DOES suggest that radiation damage tends to focus in what is referred to as 'junk DNA', reducing the risk of exposure having negative effects even within generations of future offspring.

Thirdly:
Quote from:  Page 10, Plutonium, third paragraph
Although the small number of subjects allows no statistical significance, the data suggest plutonium exposures are beneficial.
Without statistical significance (and their apparant lack of ability to run an alternate statistical test for small sample sizes, because they do exist) the data can suggest nothing, no matter how much you wish it do. Oh, do I know this pain personally.

Fourthly: The studies are based on source of radiation, not type of radiation. This is extremely significant, because isotope decay and other sources of ionizing radiation have very different effects on organisms, particularly humans, wearing a lead-rich safety apron and welding helment and one wearing no such protection. Nothing in the study suggests that this has been accounted for in estimates of exposure.

Fifth: The chain of study they refer to only begins at radiation at 1919. Before this time point, it only establishes concepts important to the understanding of the study in the use of mathematical models and assumptions. Radiation very likely does follow a check/v/U curve in terms of effect, but the effect it has is vastly different to mamalian biology than in plant life (we 'photosynthesize' vitamin D through a much different mechanism than plant photosynthesis). Similarly, the effect of ingested and induced toxins is very different than that of our body handling ionization.

Sixth: Factors that can cause spurrious correlation are varied and numerous. Earlier or later undocumented sources of radiation exposure, exposure to or existence of risk factors for other causes of death, availability of and quality of medical care, significant variations in diet between the control group and the study group...if you think any of these sound ridiculous (particularly the last), consider the following: fishers and port-city populations eat a different diet than inland farming and animal raising communities, which also varies from large inland cities. We already know how the difference between primary sources of meat and general level of ingestion affect health concerns.

So for clarity: these studies look promising, and I look forward to the results they yield. But it's going to take considerably more studies to convince me to enter that chamber, take that pill, get that shot, or let you get near me with that radiation gun. Since I plan on world travel [by airplane!] on top of that, including radiation study, I'll be sure to account for accurate estimates of self exposure when the time comes.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: NemoUtopia on May 16, 2010, 08:39:13 pm
Fair enough. All your possible flaws are not to be taken lightly. Your reasoning is solid right up to the point where you discuss your real-world reaction to the threat or benefit of ionizing radiation.

Yes, our knowledge is incomplete, however I cannot understand why that means you would accept a clearly bogus assertion that all ionizing radiation is bad, at whatever level, over strong indications that this is not so. This is what I meant about the "smart money." I don't know the final truth, but the research strongly suggests that I am less likely to get cancer when exposed to low-level radiation than if I cut radiation completely out of my diet. There are no guarantees and so we are just playing the odds. I do not think the odds favor abstinence, but favor more radiation than I am getting from background. YMMV.

My statement isn't an assertion of 'all exposure is bad', but 'I'm pretty sure I'll be exposed plenty through travel and what I like doing'. If not, I can always 'fix it' later...it's certainly a hedged bet.  And a note to myself, even the best hedgers ends up being too cautious sometimes.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Shotgun Wedding on May 18, 2010, 05:08:21 am
The radiation problem in the Lunar towers is exactly the same one present in all interplanetary spacecraft (albeit, given constant boost, for much longer time on the Moon), and to all dwellers in either surface domes or ships (or Ghetti) in the asteroid belt (though the Belt gets some 1/16 the radiation level compared to the Lunar surface, over time it still adds up).

Do they? That is the orthodox belief, "any radiation is dangerous." The problem is there there is absolutely no experimental evidence to support that assertion. It is only extrapolated backwards from high radiation dosages. "Well, if a lot is bad for you, then a little is bad for you too, only less so."

To the extent that there has been any research on the subject, the opposite has been shown to be true. That is, a little radiation (up to about 100 times natural background radiation on the surface of the earth) is beneficial to your health, resistance to disease, mental functions, resistance to cancer, etc. See:

     http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiation_hormesis




"Ahem"
Sandy it isn't the radiation it's the particle density over time (duh, I know that's the same thing), Alpha & Gamma particles in ANY density can destroy organics very quickly. More exposure more damn damage. It's why I wear a hat.
 
I spent 2 years working a nuclear power plant decommissioning (Trojan NPP. Goble, Oregon). In our weekly training sessions we learned that A single Alpha particle will cause certain materials to spontaneously combust, IE polyester, Nylon, certain nonaramids. Seals made of these materials will deteriorate before your eyes in those conditions. Too much of that will kill you very quickly. There are areas of Utah and Nevada where the NATURAL radiation levels are so high Nothing grows.

That tower on the moon reminds me of a story by Robert Silverberg? Something called an Urban Monad....... Make it fall down!

I still think the tower on the moon is a dumb idea though. I'd much rather be buried under the surface. It'll save time later when I die from exposure to the abrasive microscopic dust and ancient mold spores......
OOPs I just described my office! ;D

This still is my favorite place on the internet!
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Brugle on May 18, 2010, 09:23:06 am
Alpha & Gamma particles in ANY density can destroy organics very quickly. More exposure more damn damage.
For inanimate matter (more specifically, hunks of plastic), the evidence suggests that that is true.  If we didn't have any data, it might make sense to assume that any level of ionizing radiation would also damage living creatures.

However, for living creatures (more specifically, human beings), the evidence that we have suggests that low levels of radiation are beneficial.  Apparently, a human being does not have the same long-term response to low levels of ionizing radiation as a hunk of plastic.  To some people that idea seems weird, but it's what the data show.  (It's possible that the information we have is wrong, but that's true for any assertion about reality.)

Too much of that will kill you very quickly.
True.  High levels of ionizing radiation will damage anything.  Nobody is suggesting otherwise.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: SandySandfort on May 18, 2010, 12:35:32 pm
I spent 2 years working a nuclear power plant decommissioning (Trojan NPP. Goble, Oregon). In our weekly training sessions we learned...

No, you were told that. In other words, your instructors repeated what they had been told. Maybe true or maybe false, but not persuasive without citations to the underlying research.

 
... Too much of that will kill you very quickly.

Too much of anything will kill you. We were discussing the benefits of low-level ionizing radiation, which is supported by research, not "too much" radiation.


There are areas of Utah and Nevada where the NATURAL radiation levels are so high Nothing grows.

Piffle. Please give us a citation. Also, we are not talking about high radiation. So even if your story is true (it isn't, I'm pretty sure), it is irrelevant to our discussion of the beneficial effects of low-level ionizing radiation.


I still think the tower on the moon is a dumb idea though.

There I am inclined to agree with you. If it were just economics, mega-skyscrapers just don't make sense. Still the Burj Dubai (the name has changed, though) is super cool. It shows what is possible by the hand of Man.

Now as it happens, a polar tower would have made economic sense if it had originally been designed for agriculture. You have to be high enough to catch the perpetual sunlight. Something like that will be showing up on Ceres in a future EFT.

This still is my favorite place on the internet!

Now you are talking!
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Azure Priest on May 19, 2010, 10:01:56 am
It should be noted that using high powered magnetic fields in close proximity instead of actual shielding against radiation may NOT be a good thing either. According to popular mechanics (or was it Popular science) for last month, when the magazine was performing research on the "urban myth" that Cell phones cause cancer, the researcher discovered that while there is no conclusive evidence, the pattern DOES in fact follow the use.

To put it simply, if you talk on a cell phone predominantly with your right ear, you are more LIKELY to get cancer on that side of your head.

There is also previous research on public schools built on lots with high EMF, (lots with many crossing high tension electric cables) because the lot itself is considerably cheaper. Cancer and other physical abnormalities are certainly higher in those areas. Cause? Maybe maybe not. Risk factor? Yes.

So while continuous high yield Electro magnetic fields may be a good idea for protecting inorganic elements from ionizing radiation (does nothing for Non-ionizing radiation like Gamma rays), the cure may, and I stress MAY, be worse than the disease on living things.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: SandySandfort on May 19, 2010, 10:40:28 am
One slight quibble.

So while continuous high yield Electro magnetic fields may be a good idea for protecting inorganic elements from ionizing radiation (does nothing for Non-ionizing radiation like Gamma rays), the cure may, and I stress MAY, be worse than the disease on living things.

Gamma rays are ionizing. I think you meant they don't have an electrical charge or something like that.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: KBCraig on May 20, 2010, 04:29:05 am
Speaking of ionizing radiation...  ;) ;D

During the same time frame that America started to panic over radon, there were still thermal baths in Germany (and elsewhere in Europe, plus Japan, and Colorado), where radon gas inhalation and baths are touted as a good thing.

I think most of those spas still thrive, despite American homeowners panicking over radon in their basements.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: sams on May 20, 2010, 07:12:23 am
The bottom line is that everything can kill you at a certain ... in fact I just gained some 20 kg that are gonna surely kill me   those damned Hamburgers ;D

It is just a question of how and how long you get exposed to radiation and electromagnetic waves, then measuring the effects .... so no need to panic and go all OMG

The Apollo Mission went through space and in a very risky way were exposed to a lot of radiation. At the time no one at NASA were sure about it and they could have been killed by a singe Solar eruption. Sure the question of permanent settle in space, be it in the moon, Ceres, or a spaceship will be an interesting experiment since we actually don't know what are the effect of low level radiation over a lifetime .... we can extrapolate but until it is done no way to know.

Yes the Lunar Tower is probably a dumb idea because of radiation and an underground structure would make more sense ... but this can be easily solved by the fact Hydrogen rich materials like foam can effectively protect against much particles and in case of emergency entering a water tank can protect against the most violent solar eruption.

Then in the context of EFT, not only the technology is advanced enough, but contrarily to a space raft passing to space ship (think appolo 11), a Burj Arab like structure on the moon surface is big enough to have shields and walls strong enough to shild radiation, remember the moon gravity is less than earth, so it is easier to build something massive. Combined with foams and more sofisticated system like magnetic field, you can get a pretty safe building.

Then like the Burjh Arab you can pretty much have space to make shelter in the center who are in the middle of a water tank.

So yes the LUNAR TOWERS are a great, feasible idea, maybe expensive, but great nonetheless
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: SandySandfort on May 20, 2010, 12:18:28 pm
New study shows moderate cell phone use may reduce cancer risk:

http://www.gizmag.com/mobile-phone-cancer-link/15154/?utm_source=Gizmag+Subscribers&utm_campaign=a472a54316-UA-2235360-4&utm_medium=email
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: ZeissIkon on May 20, 2010, 04:03:00 pm
To put it simply, if you talk on a cell phone predominantly with your right ear, you are more LIKELY to get cancer on that side of your head.

There is also previous research on public schools built on lots with high EMF, (lots with many crossing high tension electric cables) because the lot itself is considerably cheaper. Cancer and other physical abnormalities are certainly higher in those areas.

First, you're comparing apples to road apples -- magnetic shielding against solar alpha and beta particles is a constant field, not the alternating fields found around power lines and radio devices like cell phones.  Second, pointing out that schools were built under power towers because the land is cheaper suggests that studies may not have been normed against the well known bad health effects of simply being poor (or against other environmental causes of diseased and birth defects, many of which are more common in poor neighborhoods because, again, their presence and/or the presence of their sources reduces land values).

Bottom line, sketchy science maybe/maybe not pointing to a link between alternating EM fields and illness has nothing to do with any effects from a constant field; so far as I'm aware, the only effects that have been demonstrated from very strong non-alternating fields are "mag-photemes" -- spurious flashes of light, possibly produced by either entrained particles or directly by Faraday excitation of current in a nerve cell at the right value (millivolts and microamps) to trigger a firing sequence that gets interpreted as light (Apollo astronauts reported photemes en route to and from, and on the Moon, which were believed to be caused by solar radiation or cosmic rays; the mechanism of mag-photemes is believed to be different, last I heard).  There have been no reports of unusual health problems with frogs that have been levitated by magnetic fields billions of times stronger than a common refrigerator magnet (and a field that strong ought to do it if any constant field would).

Given all in all, I'd rather live in a magnetic field generated by superconducting coils (and deal with the liquid nitrogen or liquid helium) than in a habitat with lead shielding; I know lead is bad for me and it's very prone to get into places where it isn't meant to be, while there's no evidence indicating magnetic fields are harmful (as opposed to EM radiation, the kind from alternating currents), and a leak in the cooling jackets won't introduce cumulative toxins to my environment.  Of course, no one would use lead for shielding on the Moon; there's probably none to be had on the Lunar surface (at least none worth extracting), and any other material of similar mass would make just as good a mass shield -- say, regolith and lunar rock in what amounts to sandbags, thicker than the lead, but much less toxic.  Hauling shielding up from Earth is just silly.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: quadibloc on May 24, 2010, 05:56:33 pm
Of course, no one would use lead for shielding on the Moon; there's probably none to be had on the Lunar surface (at least none worth extracting), and any other material of similar mass would make just as good a mass shield -- say, regolith and lunar rock in what amounts to sandbags, thicker than the lead, but much less toxic.  Hauling shielding up from Earth is just silly.
Some years back, I asked a speaker at a meeting of our local astronomy club what she thought about Gerard O'Neill's ideas about space habitats. She stated that the idea was impossible, because the level of cosmic rays in space was too high for long-term residence in space, and shielding would only increase the level of radiation, because cosmic rays would produce secondary radiation when they hit the shielding.

Now, that may well be true for shielding up to a certain point, but if you make the shield thick enough, you can have the outer part of the shield block 99.99% of the cosmic rays, and the inner part of the shield block the secondary radiation quite well.

And so that inspired me to work out a design for a space habitat... which, as it turned out, didn't add much to one previously done by students at MIT... where the rotating habitat is inside a non-rotating "wine bottle" of shielding made from left-over rock, and the long neck is aimed at a slab of shielding some distance away - so that a mirror system bringing sunlight into the habitat by concentrating it into a beam aimed down the neck of the wine bottle can fit between the slab and the opening.

Thus, cosmic rays coming from all directions are blocked, yet sunlight can be reflected in.

Engineers might be able to point out that the concern over radiation is overblown - but I'm satisfied with an existence proof for the worst case.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: jflrdl on May 31, 2010, 11:44:27 pm
Ok, Radiation aside.  Being one mile up and that the moon is 1/5 earth gravity.  Would not  the out rush of atmosphere from the tower propel Normans body beyond escape velocity of the moon.  Thus propelling Norman into a elliptic orbit around the moon ?  And even if he did fall to the surface wouldn’t he be dead seconds after exit thru the window from the vacuum of space ?  Not to mention that his body would have been frozen in the “44” seconds of “free fall”.  So the impact would leave a sizable crater and Norman would be smashed into a lot of small chunks ???
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Sean Roach on June 01, 2010, 12:03:05 am
If you shoot a 20 gauge slug out of a 12 gauge barrel...how fast does the slug exit the barrel?
Remember also, Norm managed to hold on for a bit, so assuming the air was partially depleted by the time he lost his grip, he'd have less velocity leaving that window.

And hey.  Asphyxiated, frozen to death.  Bludgeoned to death by his own fall.  Shattered into myriad pieces on impact.  The little tinpot would-be dictator/repeat rapist still died an unpleasant death.

Also, I thought the moon had 1/7th gravity.

Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: jflrdl on June 01, 2010, 01:49:39 am
If you shoot a 20 gauge slug out of a 12 gauge barrel...how fast does the slug exit the barrel?
Remember also, Norm managed to hold on for a bit, so assuming the air was partially depleted by the time he lost his grip, he'd have less velocity leaving that window.

And hey.  Asphyxiated, frozen to death.  Bludgeoned to death by his own fall.  Shattered into myriad pieces on impact.  The little tinpot would-be dictator/repeat rapist still died an unpleasant death.

Also, I thought the moon had 1/7th gravity.

 

How fast does a shotgun slug exit a barrel ??  That would depend on the weight of the slug and the powder charge.  Typically it’s around 1100 to 1900 FPS (Feet per second) anymore and you risk instability to your slug in its flight trajectory.  Pellets are worse. ( I used to load my own ammunition ) I’m not sure what a 20 gauge in a 12 gauge would do but I would hazard a guess that it would be around 1/3 to ½ less  of that assuming that the wad ballooned out to fill the empty space.  But your point is well taken. Norman looks like he is roughly 8 times less the area of the window.  However, have you ever stood in the back wash of a jet ??  A lot of air trying to go in one direction all at once is not to be resisted.
And your right, death is death but it would have been nicer to know that Norman had some time to squeal on the way down or up as the case may be.  Even though he was holding on for dear life he probably still thought he might have a chance.  The second he exited the window it was over,  He probably never felt it.  As to the out rush of air slowing down, remember that the air lock door was rusted  (can things rust it an environmentally controlled atmosphere ? ) open, so presumably the whole tower was open ended to the vacuum of space. That is,  to all the doors that were left open.  A mile high cylinder has a lot of volume.  As to the gravity of the moon it appears we are both wrong, but not by much….. it’s 1/6th that of earth.

Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: KBCraig on June 01, 2010, 03:58:22 am
If you shoot a 20 gauge slug out of a 12 gauge barrel...how fast does the slug exit the barrel?
How fast does a shotgun slug exit a barrel ??  That would depend on the weight of the slug and the powder charge. 

Welcome to the forum, jfrdl. Perhaps you missed it, but the question was a 20 Gauge slug, out of a 12 Gauge barrel. That is, with no wadding or seal, similar rto what happened in this arc of Terra.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Sean Roach on June 01, 2010, 07:14:10 am
He got it.  He glitched on the wadding, but he got it.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: SandySandfort on June 01, 2010, 10:44:44 am
Ok, Radiation aside.  Being one mile up and that the moon is 1/5 earth gravity.  Would not  the out rush of atmosphere from the tower propel Normans body beyond escape velocity of the moon.  Thus propelling Norman into a elliptic orbit around the moon ?

The moon's surface gravity is 0.165 4 g, but that nothing to do with escape velocity which is a function of the depth of the gravity well. From the surface of the moon, the escape velocity is 2.38 km/s (7,808 ft/s), which is a lot faster than a bullet. Even on little Ceres, most bullets could not exceed escape velocity under normal circumstances. In an upcoming arc, a particular gun could only achieve escape velocity when fired eastward near the equator.

  And even if he did fall to the surface wouldn’t he be dead seconds after exit thru the window from the vacuum of space ?

How long can you hold your breath? Vacuum is deadly, but mostly it's the anoxia that kills you. You don't explode or anything.

  Not to mention that his body would have been frozen in the “44” seconds of “free fall”.  So the impact would leave a sizable crater and Norman would be smashed into a lot of small chunks ???

Vacuum is the perfect insulation. To lose heat, you have to radiate it away, primarily as infrared. Ain't gonna happen in 44 seconds. Norman would lose essentially zero heat during his fall. So "SPLAAAT!" would be the appropriate comic F/X.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Brugle on June 01, 2010, 10:59:15 am
  And even if he did fall to the surface wouldn’t he be dead seconds after exit thru the window from the vacuum of space ?

How long can you hold your breath? Vacuum is deadly, but mostly it's the anoxia that kills you. You don't explode or anything.

At least one SF story about surviving a short time in vacuum (out one air lock, in another) had the recommendation to try to breathe out (for those few seconds) to prevent damage (not necessarily explosion) from air pressure in the lungs.  Was that a bad recommendation?

I'm pretty sure that the recommendation to keep the eyes closed (to prevent the surface of the eyes from boiling and freezing) was a good one.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: ZeissIkon on June 01, 2010, 05:08:57 pm
Well, okay, first, you can also lose heat in vacuum from evaporation (same way you lost most of your heat in Earth-normal conditions).  This was the principle behind the old SF standby, the skinsuit or skin tight suit: evaporation of sweat (and wasn't Norman pretty sweaty in that last frame before the window blew out?) cools the body; in fact, in vacuum, water can boil off the surface of a drop fast enough to freeze the remaining drop before it all evaporates.  Norman likely had a case of mild skin frostbite before he hit the regolith.

Second, "The Colors of Space" was probably the story Brugle refers to, though most of us had seen Dave Poole brave momentary vacuum exposure in the movie version of "2001: A Space Odyssey" long before the former story was written.  In fact, Normal was probably unconscious before he hit bottom (44 seconds is a long time in vacuum -- and holding your breath is not only inadvisable, it's impossible, your glottis isn't up to retaining around 100 MPa), but the other major problem he'd have had by that point (and  what would be racing simple anoxia for the honor of killing him) is a very, very bad case of gas emboli throughout his circulatory system -- effectively, an instant ischemic stroke brought on by fizzy blood.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: SandySandfort on June 01, 2010, 05:21:31 pm
At least one SF story about surviving a short time in vacuum (out one air lock, in another) had the recommendation to try to breathe out (for those few seconds) to prevent damage (not necessarily explosion) from air pressure in the lungs.  Was that a bad recommendation?

I may be wrong, but that sounds crazy. Do you really want your lungs turned inside out and shoved out your mouth? (Okay, that may be a bit of an exaggeration, but a collapsed lung seems like a given unless you hold your breath in.)

I'm pretty sure that the recommendation to keep the eyes closed (to prevent the surface of the eyes from boiling and freezing) was a good one.

I read somewhere that constantly blinking your eyes keeps your peepers moist, but does not much increase the danger of boiling or freezing. Plus, of course, you get to see where you are going.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: ZeissIkon on June 01, 2010, 07:30:16 pm
At least one SF story about surviving a short time in vacuum (out one air lock, in another) had the recommendation to try to breathe out (for those few seconds) to prevent damage (not necessarily explosion) from air pressure in the lungs.  Was that a bad recommendation?

I may be wrong, but that sounds crazy. Do you really want your lungs turned inside out and shoved out your mouth? (Okay, that may be a bit of an exaggeration, but a collapsed lung seems like a given unless you hold your breath in.)

I'm pretty sure that the recommendation to keep the eyes closed (to prevent the surface of the eyes from boiling and freezing) was a good one.

I read somewhere that constantly blinking your eyes keeps your peepers moist, but does not much increase the danger of boiling or freezing. Plus, of course, you get to see where you are going.

As I understand it, the major danger from trying to hold your breath is the same as if you were to stick a compressed air hose in your mouth: it takes only about 3 psi (20 MPa) to start bursting alveoli in large numbers -- large enough numbers to add up to a huge risk of an air embolism leading to stroke or death.  Fortunately, your glottis can only retain about 2/3 of that pressure (so a sneeze doesn't kill you -- usually -- if you try to contain it), and your epiglottis even less, so unless you clamp your mouth and nose shut (which is bad news for your eyes, see below), you won't do much damage that way.  I wonder about collapsing lungs; that would require there be some volume of fluid to compress the lungs, an unless you're hemorrhaging into your chest cavity, that fluid volume isn't available without some external pressure (for instance, pushing the abdominal organs up against the diaphragm).  Still, probably best would be to exhale until the pressure in the lungs is about the same as blood pressure (120 mm Hg for a healthy diastole is equivalent to almost 2.5 psi, around 17 MPa) -- which, as it happens, is about what the glottis is capable of retaining in any case.

As for blinking, the story I referenced above had the characters (and all space-going folks) hypnotically conditioned to reverse their usual blink pattern during a vacuum survival situation -- that is, flick the eyes open for a fraction of a second every second or two, moving by visual memory between "reverse blinks", so as to avoid doing sufficient damage to the eyeballs to survive as a blind man.  I don't know that any actual testing has been done on what's better, but if you need to see to survive, you might well prefer to survive with vision damage than to die trying to save your eyes.  FWIW, the cornea can actually freeze without major damage, as long as the fluid behind it (which is as salty as blood, so freezes at around -1.5º C) doesn't also freeze -- this is known from arctic/antarctic expeditions in which people actually have frostbitten their eyeballs.  At least you don't have to worry about your internal pressure blowing your eyeballs out of their sockets; your blood pressure (which is, effectively the internal pressure in your entire body) isn't enough to do that, by about a factor of four.

Honestly, based on what I've read, the human body is remarkably well designed to survive short exposures to vacuum -- the eardrums are probably the most vulnerable part, and a pair of ruptured tympani won't kill you.  Of course, that won't help you when you fall a mile to the lunar surface without benefit or either a pressure suit or a maneuvering unit capable of landing you softly...
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Brugle on June 01, 2010, 08:02:36 pm
Second, "The Colors of Space" was probably the story Brugle refers to,
the story I referenced above had the characters (and all space-going folks) hypnotically conditioned to reverse their usual blink pattern during a vacuum survival situation
Well, I remember the people being "normal" humans, but my memory could be corrupted.  Also, I quickly skimmed The Colors of Space (at Project Gutenberg) and didn't find a bunch of people who were exposed to space for a short time.  Is there such a scene?

Thanks for describing some effects of vacuum on the human body.  Very interesting.

Added: maybe I have the wrong "The Colors of Space", since that story (by Bradley) was apparently published about 5 years before "2001: A Space Odyssey" was released.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: wdg3rd on June 01, 2010, 11:33:32 pm
Second, "The Colors of Space" was probably the story Brugle refers to,
the story I referenced above had the characters (and all space-going folks) hypnotically conditioned to reverse their usual blink pattern during a vacuum survival situation
Well, I remember the people being "normal" humans, but my memory could be corrupted.  Also, I quickly skimmed The Colors of Space (at Project Gutenberg) and didn't find a bunch of people who were exposed to space for a short time.  Is there such a scene?

Thanks for describing some effects of vacuum on the human body.  Very interesting.

Added: maybe I have the wrong "The Colors of Space", since that story (by Bradley) was apparently published about 5 years before "2001: A Space Odyssey" was released.

Clarke's story on the subject, "Take a Deep Breath" was published in 1957 when I was two years old.  MZB's story was rather later and definitely not related -- some consider it an offshoot of her Darkover series (taking place elsewhere in the Terran Imperium -- and as far as I know it's still under copyright and shouldn't be at Gutenberg).

If I'm going through vacuum (hopefully briefly) I'll exhale (and not clench my asshole -- a fart in a spacesuit isn't fun, but I'd rather not have my intestines explode) to avoid serious pressure on the inside.  The bit of air in the lungs is trivial (unless you wait until anoxia has already set in, in which case it's probably too late anyway).  Yeah, it's a whole-body hickey (I think that Clarke's story was republished under the alternate title (possibly in a Playboy Books anthology in the early 70s) because of that likely effect.  I know they did at least two collections of Clarke stories, and I know damned well that a number of stories there had major changes , both in title and text, from other published versions.  But I don't have those books anymore (as Poor Richard said once," Three Removes Equal One Fire", and I've moved a lot more than three times since my teens).

Yeah, Clarke may have been a major socialist (and perhaps a pedophile by some rumors), but he did write some damed fine stuff.  "A Meeting with Medusa" probably started me on my hobby of designing LTA transportation systems.

I know NASA did some tests with chimps who survived a couple of minutes in vacuum.  (They weren't allowed to test astronaut candidates to destruction, now it's illegal to test chimpanzees even halfway there).
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Brugle on June 02, 2010, 10:27:51 am
Clarke's story on the subject, "Take a Deep Breath" was published in 1957
I started reading SF (from my older sister's bookcase) a couple of years after that.  I'd guess that is the story I remember.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Rocketman on June 02, 2010, 02:14:55 pm
When the television show "Moonbase Alpha" was on there was a comic book based on it that showed the character played by Martin Landau in one of the "eagle" shuttles that had accidently struck a small nuclear mine put in place by a very small race who were the size of a human thumb.  It badly damaged the shuttle and created a hole big enough to suck Landau out of the ship.  He managed to find his helmet and put it in place before succumbing to lack of oxygen.  I always thought that if it were a matter of maybe six or seven seconds a person could survive in vacuum provided that a sun was close enough to provide warmth.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: sams on June 02, 2010, 05:19:42 pm
If you shoot a 20 gauge slug out of a 12 gauge barrel...how fast does the slug exit the barrel?
Remember also, Norm managed to hold on for a bit, so assuming the air was partially depleted by the time he lost his grip, he'd have less velocity leaving that window.

And hey.  Asphyxiated, frozen to death.  Bludgeoned to death by his own fall.  Shattered into myriad pieces on impact.  The little tinpot would-be dictator/repeat rapist still died an unpleasant death.

Also, I thought the moon had 1/7th gravity.



Your assertion are quite good, but a little torture of the laws of phisics is no crime in the pursuit of artistic perfect ... think of star trek, star wars, fire fly, Smallville etc

Quote
And hey.  Asphyxiated, frozen to death.  Bludgeoned to death by his own fall.  Shattered into myriad pieces on impact.  The little tinpot would-be dictator/repeat rapist still died an unpleasant death.

you forgot roasted once the eclipse set out and direct sun light get him to 150 degrees in 5 sec ;D
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: ZeissIkon on June 02, 2010, 06:12:23 pm
Added: maybe I have the wrong "The Colors of Space", since that story (by Bradley) was apparently published about 5 years before "2001: A Space Odyssey" was released.

Sorry, I think the actual title was "All the Colors of Space" -- it was one of a series published in Analog in (IIRC) the 1980s, involving zero-point energy propulsion, degenerate matter or neutronium as a gravitational compensator for high acceleration (allowing constant boost travel within the Solar System at up to 100 G while passengers and crew experienced just the usual 1 G), and a couple ongoing characters (one of whom, in fine SF tradition, was a socially inept genius; the other was a corporate troubleshooter and the genius' keeper).  It's been a long time since I read the stories, I don't recall the author, and I don't know if they were ever collected.  Unfortunately, Google can't find the title for me, and Analog's online index is down for renovation, it says.

When the television show "Moonbase Alpha" was on there was a comic book based on it that showed the character played by Martin Landau in one of the "eagle" shuttles that had accidently struck a small nuclear mine put in place by a very small race who were the size of a human thumb.  It badly damaged the shuttle and created a hole big enough to suck Landau out of the ship.  He managed to find his helmet and put it in place before succumbing to lack of oxygen.  I always thought that if it were a matter of maybe six or seven seconds a person could survive in vacuum provided that a sun was close enough to provide warmth.

Go back a little further, there was a vacuum exposure scene in the British "UFO!" series -- nothing spectacular about it, as the decompression was gradual and the exposed character just lost consciousness for a few seconds before rescuers arrived.
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: Rocketman on June 03, 2010, 09:13:00 am
Made a slight mistake on my last post.  I believe that the name of the TV show was "Space 1999" and the location was moonbase alpha.  My bad.  ;D
Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: wdg3rd on June 04, 2010, 01:27:10 pm

Sorry, I think the actual title was "All the Colors of Space" -- it was one of a series published in Analog in (IIRC) the 1980s, involving zero-point energy propulsion, degenerate matter or neutronium as a gravitational compensator for high acceleration (allowing constant boost travel within the Solar System at up to 100 G while passengers and crew experienced just the usual 1 G), and a couple ongoing characters (one of whom, in fine SF tradition, was a socially inept genius; the other was a corporate troubleshooter and the genius' keeper).  It's been a long time since I read the stories, I don't recall the author, and I don't know if they were ever collected.  Unfortunately, Google can't find the title for me, and Analog's online index is down for renovation, it says.


Charles Sheffield.  One of his McAndrew stories.

Title: Re: Lunar Towers
Post by: ZeissIkon on June 04, 2010, 06:54:11 pm

Sorry, I think the actual title was "All the Colors of Space" -- it was one of a series published in Analog in (IIRC) the 1980s, involving zero-point energy propulsion, degenerate matter or neutronium as a gravitational compensator for high acceleration (allowing constant boost travel within the Solar System at up to 100 G while passengers and crew experienced just the usual 1 G), and a couple ongoing characters (one of whom, in fine SF tradition, was a socially inept genius; the other was a corporate troubleshooter and the genius' keeper).  It's been a long time since I read the stories, I don't recall the author, and I don't know if they were ever collected.  Unfortunately, Google can't find the title for me, and Analog's online index is down for renovation, it says.


Charles Sheffield.  One of his McAndrew stories.



Yes, thank you!