I had an idea of a character in my story living on the bottom of the upper atmosphere in some sort of space station or ship. Would living like this in a gas giant be possible like on Bespin from Star Wars

This is my idea for what the planet looks like

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    $\begingroup$ Welcome to worldbuilding. We have a one question per post policy, since it makes easier to pick good answers. Please edit the post accordingly. You can find more info in the help center $\endgroup$
    – L.Dutch
    Jun 26, 2021 at 4:25
  • $\begingroup$ You might find The Algeraist , by Iain M. Banks of interest. $\endgroup$
    – user81881
    Jun 26, 2021 at 16:23
  • $\begingroup$ One thing to consider: I think there is a non-zero chance that a terrestrial human may be driven insane by the view. No, I'm not kidding: see Thalassophobia and Acrophobia. But imagine that instead of a big opaque ocean, it's an almost unimaginably colossal, ever-changing, mostly-transparent pocket of unsurvivable atmosphere... which rests on top of an exotic "ocean." $\endgroup$
    – Tom
    Jun 26, 2021 at 17:24

2 Answers 2




from Jupiter Submarine. https://what-if.xkcd.com/138/

Your character inhabits a khaoskaphe - a vehicle capable of traversing the various layers of the gas giant atmosphere. You can keep Lobot from Bespin since he seems like a handy person to have around but the ability to visit various layers each with their own inhabitants and ecosystem will make it more fun for the fiction.


Yes, a balloon is perfectly possible, though you are somewhat limited in the choice of buoyant gas, realistically only heated hydrogen.

Less realistic, but cooler is a supramundane shell over the planet.

  • $\begingroup$ What an excellent paper! $\endgroup$
    – DrMcCleod
    Jun 26, 2021 at 6:53

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