I am a post-human adapted for permanent life in vacuum and micro-gravity. How might my physiology and biochemistry overcome the following challenges?

Please note I have a strong cultural aversion to augmenting my body in order to help me survive: i.e. enclosing myself in artificially-constructed protective shells, etc.

Current status

See Part 1 on radiation resistance

See Part 2 on temperature control

See Part 3 on metabolism

At this stage, I look similar to an enormous shining pangolin with interlocking plates of keratin-analogue that are alloyed with steel to protect against ionizing radiation. My radically engineered DNA and its unparalleled checksum and repair functions keep the doctor away. I can move these plates to help dissipate heat and - just like a Terran pangolin - curl up in a protective ball to shield my more sensitive parts. I have a reactive outercoating that allows me to alter my pigmentation (which I typically set to polished silver in order to minimise heat loss).

Space is a tough place to live and its very big, so you could say my metabolism has multiple redundancies. I can eat comets and asteroid material, using the spinneret on my tail to swaddle them in cocoons before supping on the extracted organics and minerals. I sift small concentrations of hydrogen from the interplanetary medium for use as a metabolic catalyst, and I'm a radiotroph, with the outer layer of my armoured plates coated in a melanin that helps me capture energetic rays to power my body. Stick me near a magnetic field and I'll even generate power like a dynamo.

I use my four long limbs and tail, five identical manipulators, and my silk spinnerets to move short to medium distances and interact with my environment. I'm still not sure how I move long, interplanetary, distances but I can do that as well. See part 4 on movement

Part 5: Senses

I have cat-like eyes, optical amplifiers to better perceive in very weak light. I can arrange sensory organs in my head, four limbs and tail to provide a rough 360 degree scan across the electromagnetic spectrum. My brain can intercept and interpret radio communications, etc.

I have two problems.

a. Laser communication I can emit coherent lasers through an adaptation incorporating fluorescent protein from a jellyfish. I use these to communicate with my peers, but I don't know what the sensory receiver looks like. I'm guessing it is a specific point(s) on my body, but what might it be biologically composed of?

b. Celestial mechanics In order to navigate the Titan-Mercury transit properly, I need to be able to sense mass, motions of celestial objects, etc. What kind of biological mechanisms could support such a sensory apparatus?

  • What are your lasers like, and how do you use them? What kind of resolution are you looking for, physically and temporally? Do you need to be able to distinguish between different wavelengths/colors? – Cadence Nov 9 at 0:40

A) skin - Human skin already has constructs designed to sense light. What you need is to just increase the resolution, response time, and then plug that into a neural framework. But sense you are working with lasers on a cosmic scale you want your receiver to be as big as possible so you don't miss.

B) Technically this is what Cochlea in the Ear is for. Its a ball filled with fluid that gives you your sense of up and down and helps with balance. The fluid is pulled down by gravity.

Granted the human cochlea is way to primitive for what you are asking, but the design principals still work. You just need to increase the neural fidelity so that the tiniest pressure differences orient you towards the greatest gravitational pull. You also need a way to phase out physical movements from interfering with the perception of the sensed field. Again, the human brain already does this to some extent, both consciously and subconsciously.

I don't know what the sensory receiver looks like. I'm guessing it is a specific point(s) on my body, but what might it be biologically composed of?

Well, laser light is just made out of photons like normal light. The only difference being that those photons are coherent, having all the same phase, polarization and direction of propagation.

So, to just detect laser light you don't need anything more sophisticated than an eye, like any spectroscopy lab guy can tell you (together with the pun of not staring into the laser with your remaining good eye). You might just need to be able to withstand higher energy densities.

If you instead want to be able to discriminate between laser and non laser light, you might need some interferometer inside your eyes to sense the phase difference.

I need to be able to sense mass, motions of celestial objects, etc. What kind of biological mechanisms could support such a sensory apparatus?

Here I will go for something cool, since you are post human. If you can detect gravitational waves, you can sense moving mass in the universe. The lower the intensity you can detect, the lower the moving mass you can spot.

If you have an interferometer in your eyes for spotting laser, you can use the same concept to also detect gravitational waves, same as LIGO/VIRGO does.

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