In my story, a planet colonizing business goes to a very unlikely part of space to have a good planet in the goldilocks zone. When they out of pure luck, scan a planet almost exactly like earth. They all arrive in 10 aircraft carrier size spacecraft; the 10,000 colonist all awake from cryogenic sleep, all waiting to see their new planet. They travel to the coordinates they got and it is an earth sized moon orbiting a gas giant the size of jupiter; I'm not concerned with any of that bit, reading this link- moon link . They go there and It is an ocean planet, nothing is above sea level. The moon has already has seasons and weather all like earth. The moon has some organisms swimming in the water, none of them sentient.

They either decide to do one of three things:

  • Make a floating city on the water

  • Build an underwater colony

  • Raise a small tectonic plate out of the water

The tectonic plate they are looking at to raise:

  • About the size of the UK

  • Has very fertile soil

  • Nice geology

  • Plentiful in resources

(They gathered this info from probes they sent to the surface.)

I want to raise a tectonic plate out of the water quickly, the benefits would be:

  • More space

  • No worrying about climate control

  • No worrying about sinking (if permits when rising it up)

  • More space to build freely

  • Can make large sustainable farms.

  • More if you can think of it

How would I raise a tectonic plate out of the water quickly? They plan to raise more plates in the future, if possible.

If it would be better all around and in the long run, just to do another option, tell me why.

BONUS! Think of a good name for the colonist new home.

If more questions, just ask in comments. :)

  • $\begingroup$ An ocean planet would be a terrible place for life: there would be lack of phosphorus, and without it photosynthetic organisms cannot thrive. $\endgroup$ – L.Dutch - Reinstate Monica Oct 29 '18 at 13:56
  • $\begingroup$ You may be better off triggering some volcanoes to spill out lava to form large island chains. Maybe even artificial fissures in tectonic crust could make for large continent-sized structures. However, if the moon has no surface features whatsoever, that likely means than the core of the planet is inert. In that case, there's probably no tectonic structures to speak of. A digging and piling operation may be a better call. $\endgroup$ – B.fox Oct 29 '18 at 14:02
  • $\begingroup$ What sort of tech level are we talking about here? Raising continents is many orders of magnitude beyond the capabilities of what's implied by the scenario. $\endgroup$ – Gene Oct 29 '18 at 14:27
  • $\begingroup$ Nice idea, but it's been done: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Blue_World $\endgroup$ – jamesqf Oct 29 '18 at 17:31
  • $\begingroup$ @jamesqf can you give a quick explanantion of how they did it? $\endgroup$ – Aaron Oct 29 '18 at 17:36

Terraforming operations are hard, and take a long time

'Raising tectonic plates' makes little sense - in essence tectonic plates are undersurface movement of magma. You could attempt to collide two plates together to create a crumpling effect, which may push some mountain ranges above sea level (like the Himalayas) however the energy required to do this artificially would simply not be worth it.

Somehow you need to evaporate the water to reveal the continents instead. The easiest way to do this would be to enact global-scale climate change - introduce as much carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere to warm it.

Alternatively, introduce light-blocking gases into the atmosphere to freeze water - perhaps water at the poles - to create continents of ice instead. This may lower sea-levels to expose shallow land.

These all take enormous amounts of time, and your colonists may be impatient and ask the major question of why they should do this, considering they have already perfectly good space-faring craft, either to search for another world or explore onwards. It would also be much easier to create a space habitat of their own, out of a multitude of asteroids, than to terraform a planet.

Just get an asteroid, hollow it out, and put an atmosphere in it - and enjoy a much easier space world.

Or, continue your journey to the stars...


I think you've underestimated how hostile this planet is.

Weather like Earth

Storms are brewed at sea and blow themselves out over land. With no land the storms just keep brewing. On Earth the Southern Ocean effectively runs all the way round the world, the storms and waves down there are legendary among round the world sailors. You've created this on a planetary scale

The tides are massive

Again the tides are interrupted by landmasses, on your world the tide is going to be a vast wave running around the planet every rotation.

What this means

  • A floating city is not an option. It would be destroyed in short order.

  • An underwater city would have to be a fair way down to be below the extremes of the storms and tides.

  • What happened to the planet's own landmasses? Parts of the UK are being eroded at considerable rate. If you raise such a small landmass against such a violent ocean it's not going to last long.

Your best way to progress.

  1. Build a deep underwater city for the initial colonisation - not sustainable in the long term

  2. Raise multiple continental scale landmasses to tame the ocean

  • $\begingroup$ If there aren't already continents that probably means the planetary geochemistry won't support a crustal chemistry differential; no continental crust/oceanic crust separation so raising continents isn't really going to work. $\endgroup$ – Ash Oct 29 '18 at 14:11
  • $\begingroup$ What could I change to make this planet less violent? And what could i do to raise multiple continental landmasses to tame $\endgroup$ – Aaron Oct 29 '18 at 15:32
  • $\begingroup$ Why not have continents exist, they're just not in places that are useful to the colonists? $\endgroup$ – Cyn says make Monica whole Oct 29 '18 at 16:30
  • $\begingroup$ Would a tide be such a destructuve thing without shallows to create nozzle-like behaviour? $\endgroup$ – bukwyrm Nov 2 '18 at 12:05
  • $\begingroup$ @bukwyrm, the tides aren't destructive until you try to put something in the way. A floating city would be fine, an island would be rapidly eroded. $\endgroup$ – Separatrix Nov 2 '18 at 12:08

Please don't consider this answer as realisticly.
You could use the moon to pull the tectonical plate out of the water.
It would look like this:

the way

picture stolen from what if by randall monroe

pretty self explaining...
And it won't work because moons actually pretty far away and the extreme forces will kill any type of rope inbetween.

For the name, i think 'Atlantis' is suitable. Or 'Bob' if you like Titan A.E. I still hope this helps :)


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