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Alien Plasma Technology is a mess


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Hey there, new xeno player over here.

I did enjoy the game so far, and the fluff text on the research was pretty nice so far.

Except for Alien Plasma Technology...

Now from the perspective of a physics engineer:

1) Picture says the front part is an 'Antimatter Emitter', while the text talks about Graviton Emitter

2) Graviton? Gravitational force is a lot weaker than electric or magnetic force.

One might argue the Graviton is not yet discovered, therefore, focusing a lot of Gravitons at the Graviton Emitter might produce enough force to cancel out the electric repulsion.

The problem tho is, gravitation is not only a lot, but A FRICKING BLOODY HELL OF A LOT weaker than electromagnetic force!

Its actually around 10^39 times weaker - thats 40 zeros more in front of the actual number of newtons, compared to the electric repulsion the plasma would produce...

This is not something to be overcome by being smart.

I suggest something else

3) Lastly, in the last paragraph of the description, its an anti-gravity emitter all of a sudden.

I guess thats a simple error due to the anti-matter <-> graviton hiccup

as for 2)

I liked the idea of the Helix compressing the gas (Stellarator Fusion reactors do excactly this - love you guys for it ;) )

The big problem is with the gas outside the barrel ofc.

How about this:

The Graviton emitter is actually a Gluon emitter.

(Gluons are the stuff holding together Neutrons and Protons in our atomic nuclei)

The SMALL amount of ionized HYDROGEN gas (basically Protons) gets bombarded by a VERY small number of Gluons.

The Gluons bind some of the Protons to a very instable solid projectile.

As soon as the projectile hits something more solid than air or a dense gas, the gluons power is not enouzgh anymore to overcome the electric repulsion, resulting in a 'nano nukelear explosion', emitting a lot of heat and some minor gamma-ray radioactivity (not enough to be any danger unless you get hit by many of those.. which would be lethal anyway)

The beauty:

Noone can argue with this, as noone knows if its possible :P

Also, the plasma 'projectile' still would have all the neccessary features to be identical with the current plasma:

- The further away, the less likely the plasma will arrive its target, as it loses particles on its way, due to the unstable nature of the Proton-Proton nucleus

- Emits light and heat while traveling, due to the broken Proton-Proton nuclei ionizing the air around them

- its HOT.. a very very small nuke, as mentioned (i called nano nuke cause very few particles would be involved)

I dont want to be an a*s, but the explanation really bugged me :)

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I love that description. I'm a physics major, and I originally suggested gravitons (to replace antimatter) because the idea was that the "antimatter" created a gravitational field to hold the projectile together. I didn't like that, so I suggested that the technobabble be changed to graviton, to keep with the gravitational field holding it together idea. I agree, though, an EM field >>> gravitational field.

I support your idea for changing it; it not only makes sense from a real world standpoint (enough ;)), but it still sounds cool to those who don't know anything about atomic and subatomic particles and the like.

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Why not both.

It keeps the soup together using a magnetic field to concentrate the electrons in the plasma soup, a gravitational field to keep the free protons from melting the gun.

It then uses the magnetic field to propel the electrons at a high concentration at ultra-sonic velocities, taking the free protons (Thus, most of the mass, heat, and the like,) with them.

Edited by WalrusJones
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Why not both.

It keeps the soup together using a magnetic field to concentrate the electrons in the plasma soup, a gravitational field to keep the free protons from melting the gun.

It then uses the magnetic field to propel the electrons at a high concentration at ultra-sonic velocities, taking the free protons (Thus, most of the mass, heat, and the like,) with them.

My point actually was that i really wanted to get rid of the gravitons ;)

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Well, here is the thing with plasma: Magnet containment is problematic in its own right...

Whatever force you try to contain, the other will be attracted to your containment. This is part of why making a fusion power plant in real life is so problematic: Maintenance of the reaction chamber is absurdly high due to the fact that WHATEVER you contain is going to let its opposite bring hell upon your reaction chamber, and two, it takes absurdly strong magnetic fields to contain the reaction, making it so it almost always costs more energy to create the same amount of energy.

A secondary force that somehow prevents #1, and weakens #2 is actually a reasonable idea.

Sure, it may be 10^39 times weaker then the other force (Gravity, and magnetism,) but lets say the first discovered method of manipulating this force is 10^38 time greater in the volume of the force generated per unit of energy put in...

Then, it becomes somewhat reasonable to say that the 8x(10^38) power system (80% efficiency of human level electromagnets,) could be used as a secondary containment system to avert your weapon exploding, powered by an insanely powerful alien battery that let them make their way to earth from their distant home of Xyzzy....

Instead of saying that they do this thing that is impossible, with modern science, without anything we don't have with modern science.

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This post is pretty useless for anyone other than WalrusJones and those who think he's got a point!

tl;dr

[...]

No!

Well, here is the thing with plasma: Magnet containment is problematic in its own right...

[/Quote]

We dont want to contain anything

Whatever force you try to contain, the other will be attracted to your containment.

[/Quote]

You dont contain force; stuff you contain applies force.

The other what...?

This is part of why making a fusion power plant in real life is so problematic: Maintenance of the reaction chamber is absurdly high due to the fact that WHATEVER you contain is going to let its opposite bring hell upon your reaction chamber, and two, it takes absurdly strong magnetic fields to contain the reaction, making it so it almost always costs more energy to create the same amount of energy.

[/Quote]

The opposite of plasma is.. uhm.. ???

Maintainance of fusion reactor chambers actually is pretty ok - just swap the partial wallparts when they have taken too much damage (thats why the wall is built in this brick style)

The problem with the high energy cost in a fusion chamber is cause of the plasma constantly accellerating (and WAY higher temperature than our supposed weapon).

The faster it is, the bigger the containmentfield needs to be.

That's why Tokamaks only run for a short while, power down, and restart.

Stellarators use the geometry of the field to slow down the plasma inside.

With a weapon, we WANT to accelerate the plasma.

The energy of the field FOCUSING (not containing!) the plasma just needs to be high enough to overpower the (caused by the - compared to the reactor's small - heat) expansion of the gas.

A secondary force that somehow prevents #1, and weakens #2 is actually a reasonable idea.

Sure, it may be 10^39 times weaker then the other force (Gravity, and magnetism,) but lets say the first discovered method of manipulating this force is 10^38 time greater in the volume of the force generated per unit of energy put in...

[/Quote]

I don't really get this part...

Then, it becomes somewhat reasonable to say that the 8x(10^38) power system (80% efficiency of human level electromagnets,) could be used as a secondary containment system to avert your weapon exploding, powered by an insanely powerful alien battery that let them make their way to earth from their distant home of Xyzzy....

The problem always was and will be the plasma OUTSIDE the weapon.

Once it's been shot.

Everything inside is taken care of by 'we got an infinite supply of energy lol' (aka Alenium)

Instead of saying that they do this thing that is impossible, with modern science, without anything we don't have with modern science.

I didnt say its impossible now - I said its impossible.

Thats the beauty of nature's laws - once you know them, they are ALWAYS true.

As long as you do not pull something else into the electromagnetic <-> gravity equation, i WILL be right.

Let me give you another exemple of why you CANNOT circumvent the graviton problem:

One of my old physics questions in class was 'calculate all the forces between electron and proton'

im a lazy bum so i looked up the numbers real quick and no idea about distance

Fg=1,03223*10^-52N

Fe=230,08*10^-9N

so Fg*2,22896*10^45 = Fe

Proton weighs 1,7 * 10 ^-27kg

electron weighs 9,1 *10 ^-31 so we dont give a damn about it

so our proton needs the gravitational force of the equivalent to about

3,8*10^19 kg (a ton is 1*10^3 kg

Moon weighs in at 7,3*10^22

This is a little wrong due to the fact that our gas is way further spread - but u should get the point.

( i also might have miscalculated somewhere, but the big picture stays true, even if its 10^5 kg... )

I dont think you got what the problem is, nor do I think you have a good enough understanding of physics to argue

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this post is pretty useless for anyone other than walrusjones and those who think he's got a point!

Tl;dr

no!

We dont want to contain anything

you dont contain force; stuff you contain applies force.

The other what...?

The opposite of plasma is.. Uhm.. ???

Maintainance of fusion reactor chambers actually is pretty ok - just swap the partial wallparts when they have taken too much damage (thats why the wall is built in this brick style)

the problem with the high energy cost in a fusion chamber is cause of the plasma constantly accellerating (and way higher temperature than our supposed weapon).

The faster it is, the bigger the containmentfield needs to be.

That's why tokamaks only run for a short while, power down, and restart.

Stellarators use the geometry of the field to slow down the plasma inside.

With a weapon, we want to accelerate the plasma.

The energy of the field focusing (not containing!) the plasma just needs to be high enough to overpower the (caused by the - compared to the reactor's small - heat) expansion of the gas.

I don't really get this part...

The problem always was and will be the plasma outside the weapon.

Once it's been shot.

Everything inside is taken care of by 'we got an infinite supply of energy lol' (aka alenium)

i didnt say its impossible now - i said its impossible.

Thats the beauty of nature's laws - once you know them, they are always true.

As long as you do not pull something else into the electromagnetic <-> gravity equation, i will be right.

Let me give you another exemple of why you cannot circumvent the graviton problem:

One of my old physics questions in class was 'calculate all the forces between electron and proton'

im a lazy bum so i looked up the numbers real quick and no idea about distance

fg=1,03223*10^-52n

fe=230,08*10^-9n

so fg*2,22896*10^45 = fe

proton weighs 1,7 * 10 ^-27kg

electron weighs 9,1 *10 ^-31 so we dont give a damn about it

so our proton needs the gravitational force of the equivalent to about

3,8*10^19 kg (a ton is 1*10^3 kg

moon weighs in at 7,3*10^22

this is a little wrong due to the fact that our gas is way further spread - but u should get the point.

( i also might have miscalculated somewhere, but the big picture stays true, even if its 10^5 kg... )

i dont think you got what the problem is, nor do i think you have a good enough understanding of physics to argue

pwnd! :)

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You dont contain force; stuff you contain applies force.

The other what...?

The opposite of plasma is.. uhm.. ???

Maintainance of fusion reactor chambers actually is pretty ok - just swap the partial wallparts when they have taken too much damage (thats why the wall is built in this brick style)

Did you really not understand what he means? He should've said "charge" instead of "force". And I think he thinks that electric field is used for containing ions, while in fact a magnetic field is used. No need to be rude either way.

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I'm honestly unsure of what Jones said either. Makes great mods, but in the physics dept... not as hot. ;)

No worries, though. ;)

Yeah, just redoing the plasma weapon research pages would be a good idea. I like the gluon bit. :)

I'm not trying to be deep, just bullshitting in a believable way.

You may have noticed, I remember things in incredibly broad strokes, especially facts.

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My casual thought patterns were fairly impressed. When I actually paid attention, it was utter nonsense.

But, hey, so it much of the best technobabble ever: Star Trek (especially next gen and onward). I mean, "tri-lithium"? Really? Transparent Aluminum? (I'd love to see that make an appearance in this game haha)

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Im sorry if i was being disrespectful - didnt mean to.

I just meant to make my point clear... which kinda ends up in arguments since I really like all this stuff

Even my professors were never safe from me :P

Point is - no matter how much you try, the graviton part will not work out.

Sorry Walrus!

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Graviton is kinda lame, but gravity manipulation...

I would believe it from a civilization forty exponential steps ahead of an interstellar civilization.

This sub-genera of strategy has already broken my suspension of disbelief by having this civilization invade in a traditional manner.

So, quite frankly, justifying everything else as something beyond our comprehension, and spamming technobabbale is an infinitely superior to pretending we are currently capable of comprehending this civilization that crosses the stars to invade multiple planets, twist the life on them, and attack the next civilization with their psychic powers, and gravity manipulation magic.

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Well, I did suggest an explanation as to the plasma weapon that used the term "Space Magic".

Basically, when you first research alien plasma weapons, the scientist doesn't know how they keep the ball of plasma from dissipating too rapidly, so he uses the term the technicians in the workshop used: Space Magic.

When you (later in the game) research your own plasma weapons to manufacture and use, he says that they figured it out, and that it is similar to ball lightning, and how that works.

It'd give the game more of a flow, I think, showing that just doing the project doesn't grant all knowledge; some additional time may be needed.

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If i have got the gist of this suggestion, then this only effects people who real know about this tech and it has no realbearing on the game being good as a whole..... i think i speak for most of the fanbase when i say i would rather have the devs focusing on improving the general game play and getting the game finnished than fussing over how to describe theoretical technology that can only realy be theorised on as it dosnt exist in this form in the real world

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