3blake7

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About 3blake7

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    Meson

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  • Favorite Area of Science
    Terraforming

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  1. I searched for it but didn't find an answer. I was wondering how many unique molecules there are in the human body. Not the total number of molecules, but the total number of unique molecules. Also, have we discovered all of them yet? Is it possible there are still chemical reactions occurring in the human body we don't even know about yet?
  2. Cool! It's funny, I was just reading his variation of Project Daedalus, with self-replicating probes.
  3. I found this: http://www.georgedishman.f2s.com/solar/Calculator.html Just realized I had a typo on my spreadsheet. The site has diamond sail at 11.8 million W/m^2 and I had 118 million. I already looked at beamed core anti-matter rockets, inertial confinement fusion rockets, and magnetic confinement fusion rockets. They all had huge problems. I guess best bet might be nuclear pulse propulsion or maybe a hybrid setup, laser propelled light sails with nuclear pulse propulsion to slow it down.
  4. Assuming we have fusion power with an autonomous self-replicating industry to mass produce power plants and lasers, what's the biggest issue? Lasers are like 20% efficient so we would need like 150 terawatts for 44 days of acceleration?
  5. I was wondering how difficult it would be to use lasers to propel a light sail (let's say 500m x 500m) to 12% of the speed of light. The payload would be 5 megagrams. Without a way to slow it down, it would fly through the destination star system too quickly. I thought about crashing the payload into something but with that much kinetic energy, it's like a nuke going off. My payload probably wouldn't survive. I was thinking, what if you have two light sails and when you near your destination, you release the second light sail and the laser array back home bounces the lasers off the front light sail. The front light sail would be speeding up with the back light sail (plus the payload), slowing down. Is it even possible to hit a 500m x 500m target 4 lightyears away? The front light sail would probably need several adjustable light sail panels that can bounce the lasers at different angles as the distance increases. I'm also aware that lasers can fan out but not sure how much in my case. I think you might have one array of lasers accelerating and another set with a different focal point for slowing it down.
  6. Why no Star Tram?

    I looked up the timeline of the ISS, maglev tech, etc and yea, you are right, it's like asking why no CD instead of tapes. I also recently saw a documentary on the space shuttle and they originally estimated that it would be a lot cheaper and could be flown a lot more frequently than it turned out. The Star Tram estimates are probably really optimistic, there would be cost over-runs, engineering hurdles, etc.
  7. What is consciousness (pure scientific) ?

    A cockroach receives data, environmental stimuli and processes it and reacts to ensure it's own survival. How it reacts is based on it's memory of past experiences and/or "evolutionary memory" such as genetically programmed instincts. Humans are more complex, they have layers like genetically programmed instincts, like hunger, thirst, the sex drive, the instinct to protect our young, the instinct to be a member of a group, all of which increases our individual and collective survival. We have the ability to ignore a baser instinct, like an emotion, if our conscious mind determines, based on our past experiences, that acting on the emotion could threaten our survival. I personally believe that the universe is deterministic which leads to the beliefs that there is no free-will and the future is pre-determined. If you new the position and velocity of every particle in the universe, you could predict the future with 100% accuracy. We are just the result of a billions of years of dominoes falling, cause and effect, reactions of reactions. Our biology is based on chemistry and the laws of physics, everything we experience is just particles and photons, our brain and even our conscious thoughts are the result of cause and effect. We have free-will over our emotions, well some of us, but ultimately there is not free-will, we are just machines processing data and reacting. What is consciousness? Consciousness is the ability to believe we are in control of our own actions, like a pinball in a pinball machine, "Weeeeee! I am in control!"
  8. Why no Star Tram?

    You need like 8 km/s to orbit. The Gen 1 probably needs to have a higher exit velocity since it exits at a lower altitude and has to deal with more atmospheric friction. The Gen 2 exits at 22 km so it's probably less than Gen 1. They have a book which goes into more detail but it's about $10 on Amazon.
  9. Why no Star Tram?

    The ISS cost a lot of money, I've seen estimates as low as 100 billion and as high as 400 billion. I've also seen arguments that it wasn't really worth it. I was just wondering why we didn't spend that money on a Star Tram. Right now, current rockets cost about $18000 per kilogram of payload. Space X, with their reusable first stage rockets, could bring that down to as low as $1200 per kilogram. I also learned about the Star Tram and on their site they claim that it could bring the cost down to $40 per kilogram. The site claims that the Star Tram can be built with known technology and materials unlike the Space Elevator. The Space Elevator gets so much attention even though there is no known material strong enough (not even carbon nanotubes). I feel like I'm missing something, am I? http://www.startram.com/ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/StarTram http://www.maglaunch.com/
  10. It could become more likely with immortality, people will be around to see it completed. There are already researchers working on it, like the modified virus that activates the gene that causes cells to produce the telomerase enzyme. With AI, molecular manufacturing and other automation technologies, eventually there won't be any jobs left. I think we will either become a welfare state or maybe an education state, where everyone gets paid to go to school and can study anything they want. It's hard to say how culture will change with all the new capabilities and technologies coming down the pipeline. Look at how profoundly electricity and the internet changed our society. I watched the Cosmodrome documentary which was about exactly that. Soviet rockets were decades ahead of American rockets but no one knew that until after the USSR collapsed and some Russian rocket scientists showed them to American scientists. Before that the rocket scientists in America considered it impossible to do a closed cycle, which is routing the exhaust from the turbo pump back into the nozzle's combustion chamber so you get some thrust from it and don't waste it. Here is an explanation: One of the rockets NASA is using is actually the Russian rocket. I watched a congressional hearing with Elon Musk trying to get a contract with the Air Force and he used the sanctions on Russia for hacking the election to make the case that his competitor would have difficulty importing the Russian made rockets. I just thought it was funny because every now and then all the experts will believe something that turns out not to be true. It's like the belief that the universe was stable, not expanding or contracting, even Einstein believed that and dismissed another scientist that believed the universe was expanding. Then a third scientists found evidence that supported the expanding universe hypothesis and the entire theoretical physics community accepted it and changed their views. I wish politics was like that A lot of that cost is the cost of transporting it from Earth into orbit. Most existing rockets could launch 1 kg into orbit for ~$18000, Space X's reusable first stage rockets might bring the cost down to $1200/kg, and the Star Tram site is making the claim that they could bring it down to $40 per kilogram.
  11. To start it, you need to build a hundred machines, that make up an entire industry like: Surveyor, Excavator, Hauler, Loader, Feeder, Crusher, Separator, Smelters, Mold Caster, Part Caster, Grinder, Molecular Manufacturer and Assembler. You would also need to launch them into space using really big rockets or a Star Tram. According to the star tram site, they estimate a cost of 60 billion USD for their gen 2. I have no idea how much the Autonomous Self-Replicating Industry would cost. A lot of those machines are already available in mobile form. A molecular manufacturer isn't possible yet, but it's only a matter of time. IBM for instance is already working on 5 nanometer transistors. A neuron in the brain has a diameter of 120 nanometers for comparison. Here is a proof of concept nanofactory by the leading expert (also awarded an honorary doctorate from MIT): I think it could be done for like 100 billion USD. Once it starts mining, refining and self-replicating, it would grow into an industry worth hundreds of trillions (or more) and if you do a price estimate of terraforming using present day economy prices, it would be absurd, but this is self-replication, which changes everything. You only need to pay for the transportation into space and the seed machines. No one owns the asteroid belt or moon, so you don't have to pay for that.
  12. For Venus: I figured the sunshade would have like shutters and would just block some of the light constantly. Maybe even do an artificial day-night cycle so half the year you have Earth-like light cycles and the other half the year it's constantly dark. I have no idea how that would effect the weather but I think the right mechanisms are in place and it could be tuned to be "just right". I would assume there would still be a super-rotation like air current around the equator, equalizing the temperature between the day and night side. Another idea I read about was to have a series of mirrors in orbit and you could have an artificial day-night cycle on the night side too. For Mars: I guess the best solution for Mars would be to have more green house gases. No idea how much I would need though. Maybe higher CO2 levels or Methane from Titan. I was just thinking, Mars needs an atmosphere with more mass compared to Earth, since there is less gravity. The atmosphere would be a little over twice the mass of Earth, which would trap more heat? Maybe too much? You might not even need more greenhouse gases to warm it up.
  13. ORIGINAL POST is obsolete. I made this YouTube video of Mars being terraformed. I plan on rendering a new version that spins slower so you can see the changes more easily but I wanted to ask a question someone else suggested. They were wondering if the ocean would be reddish in the beginning before the atmosphere was replaced with an oxygen-nitrogen atmosphere. If you look a pictures of Mars the sky and ground are red, would the water be reflecting the red and appear more red? I know terraforming is a huge undertaking. I have a spreadsheet where I did the calculations for terraforming Venus and Mars. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1gXUkVvdsvDMAcoRa-QjDw633MYGjqjJW5h6VEpKy-30/edit?usp=sharing To summarize the approach: They designed an Autonomous Self-Replicating Industry, that could collectively self-replicate (not individually). They released Thorium powered ASRIs on moons and in the asteroid belt to self-replicate, increasing their industry's size exponentially until their industrial capacity reached the pre-determined threshold. The ASRI built an aerostat for Uranus to mine Deuterium and Helium-3 for Fusion Power Plants. The ASRI was also released on ice moons to build Fusion based factories that convert ice into Hydrogen and Oxygen fuel. The ASRI mined the raw materials to build a Sunshade for Venus, which would cool the planet and eventually turn it's entire Carbon Dioxide atmosphere into a liquid ocean. The ASRI also mass produced Supertankers that use Hydrogen-Oxygen rockets (the only fuel abundant enough to meet the demand). Supertankers moved Hydrogen and Oxygen from the ice moons to the orbits of Venus and Mars. On Venus, the Hydrogen was used to convert Carbon Dioxide into water. Excess Nitrogen was transported from Venus to Mars. Oxygen was made from excess Carbon Dioxide. Supertanker exhaust (water) also helped create oceans. Some Urea was made from excess Nitrogen, Shriebersite was also saved from mining and both were used to fertilize. Solar powered electromagnetic shields were built at the L1 points to protect the atmospheres from solar radiation. This approach required two things really: commercially viable fusion power plants and an autonomous self-replicating industry. CERN seems convinced that fusion could be viable and I think self-replication is inevitable (humans are self-replicating machines after all). I think the biggest potential problem is actually supertanker traffic jams. I'm not sure how many supertankers you could have landing and taking off per hour on Venus. How many can you have in orbit? I am saying 600 years to finish but it could be longer or shorter depending on how many supertankers you can do without collisions. The industrial effort required is gargantuan by Earth standards but I think self-replication changes the game so that's okay, you can't really look at it through a lens of present day economics. This is really the only relevant research I could find: http://www.orionsarm.com/fm_store/TerraformingVenusQuickly.pdf http://www.rfreitas.com/Astro/TerraformSRS1983.htm
  14. I rendered it at 8k and 4k if you have higher resolution screen. Made it in Blender with color and height map from the USGS and NASA. The water is actually based on the height map so it's a realistic layout of land and ocean.
  15. economic revolution

    I think it's interesting that you bring up that money has value because people believe it has value. Some politicians want to go back to the gold standard but that isn't really any different. Gold doesn't really have that many uses, except for tiny amounts in high end electronics. Gold is actually pretty useless and it only has value because people believe it has value. A currency being backed by gold really isn't any different. If culture changed and people stopped wanting gold for jewelry, the value of gold could easily drop. Backing money with something in the beginning can be beneficial, because it could help people believe in it and accept it as a value place holder. Like if a guy wanted to buy a chicken but he only had bread to trade and the guy with the chicken only wanted whiskey, the guy would need to find someone with whiskey that would trade it for bread. That's inconvenient. If there was something that everyone wanted, like a currency, then it would have 100% demand because it could be traded for anything. Once everyone in the economy believes in it because everyone in the economy accepts it as a value placeholder, then it being backed by something doesn't matter. As far as the negatives of inflation, it's really not inherently negative, the only real downside is that there may be adjustment lag (is there an official phrase for this?). If the government doubled the amount of dollars in circulation then the prices of everything would double, the products and services and the workers too. Nothing really changes, you get paid twice as much and everything cost twice as much. The downside is that the economy won't instantly change, so it's possible that some corporations would adjust their prices sooner and some workers would ask for raises sooner, so there could be a period in time where some workers are getting underpaid and some corporations are lowballing themselves. The demand for money has been increasing so most governments of the world have been printing money to prevent deflation. At first, not every person was using the currency, they were still bartering and in some places of the world, poor people still don't use a currency. As more people come into the system, you need to print more money or there could be a money shortage and that would defeat the whole point of having money. If there isn't enough money, then employers would be like, "I can't find any dollar bills but I can give you these chickens". You need to have a minimum amount of money in circulation or it defeats the point. As there are more products and services, like cable television, cellphones, websites, hospitals, cars, plane trips; a higher quality of life, an increasing population, more corporations, people with skills that make them more valuable, more bank accounts, more value in the economy overall, you need to print more money (value place holders). I was thinking it could cause temporary inflation, but you might be able to contain it by regulating trade between the "economic development zones" and the "first world" economies. Eventually, as you increase the value of impoverished people, giving them more money, them buying more, increasing demand, creating jobs, which they have been trained for, I think the inflation would be undone. For a world currency, I think you are right, that isn't necessary and would probably make the plan harder to accomplish because not all the "first world" nations would want to give up control.