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If I have a typical Dyson sphere, around my star, it will block the light needed to live on an orbiting planet.

Is there any other megastructure that can function like a Dyson Sphere, but does allow enough heat to escape to allow the existence of habitable planets orbiting that star?

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  • $\begingroup$ Isn't that the purpose of a Dyson sphere? $\endgroup$ – AlexP Dec 24 '16 at 19:37
  • $\begingroup$ @AlexP Not necessarily, isn't it able to take energy from the sun and not block it out entirely. $\endgroup$ – Mendeleev Dec 24 '16 at 19:40
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    $\begingroup$ You are confusing a Dyson Sphere with a Dyson Swarm/Bubble/Shell. The does indeed block out the sun entirely, it is a megastructure completely encompassing the star. The Swarm (et al) is a set of satellites collecting solar energy without completely blocking out the star. $\endgroup$ – Xavon_Wrentaile Dec 24 '16 at 19:57
  • $\begingroup$ @Xavon_Wrentaile I believe I clarified. $\endgroup$ – Mendeleev Dec 24 '16 at 20:00
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    $\begingroup$ Wait, so what are you actually talking about? A dyson sphere or swarm? $\endgroup$ – Xandar The Zenon Dec 25 '16 at 0:33
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If a planet is inside the volume which is enclosed by the Dyson Swarm - then you have nothing to worry about. The planet will get the usual amount of light.
Chances it will enclose the orbit of the planet are high because faraway it is more efficient is energy conversion rate light -> work.

A swarm may be a multilayer structure, there are reasons to have one layer close to the sun, so a planet of interest may be outside of that layer. This is also not a problem. Because a planet like our planet gets about 1/2'119'118'541 of energy emitted by a star like our Sun. It means you have to have a small hole less then 7000 km in radius (if the layer is at a distance 0.1a.u. from the sun, the hole have to be just 700km radius)

With dyson swarm, it is not a problem to work in the way so people on a planet may even not notice its presence with a naked eye and make hard to notice it with infrared sensitive devices etc.

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  • $\begingroup$ What of a dyson net or ring would that make sense or am I overcomplicating. $\endgroup$ – Mendeleev Dec 24 '16 at 21:52
  • $\begingroup$ So what you are proposing is a dyson swarm with holes for the habitable planets that as it is many smaller structures can move and follow orbits. $\endgroup$ – Mendeleev Dec 24 '16 at 21:54
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    $\begingroup$ DSwarm includes all other implementations rings or nets - in terms of transparency and such. Also, do not imagine it just as a rigid body, which people mostly think by saying Dyson sphere. I propose a dyson swarm with folding elements. They fold themselves or rotate with the edge towards to the planet or any other object (they do not need reactive propulsion for that and they can do it relatively fast) and they need to do so for a relatively short amount of time and only those which orbit intersects cone sun-current position of the planet. $\endgroup$ – MolbOrg Dec 24 '16 at 22:04
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Based on the comments it seems you're willing to consider something other than a full-blown sphere. In that case a Dyson ring or swarm that simply doesn't eclipse the planet would easily fit the bill. A ring inside the planets orbit, if canted a full 90 degrees, would still produce at least a partial eclipse twice per year, but depending on size and distance of the ring it might not be terribly noticeable.

A swarm would have the advantage, if you really want to avoid any eclipse, of being able to time their orbits so as to never come between the planet and the star.

On a completely different track, if you want a full-blown sphere, it could either have a plate of transparent material or even a hole that is always facing the planet to let sunlight through to it (the sphere would have to rotate at the same rate the planet orbits). The problem is this would be pretty noticeable to any astronomers on the planet, whereas a ring or swarm would be harder to detect.

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What you want is a Dyson Swarm or a Dyson Ring (or heck, any number of Dyson configurations that aren't full spheres). This does raise the question of who/what/why it was created.

Maybe your Dyson builder civilization intentionally designed their energy collectors to not block light and heat to your planet. Maybe in uninhabitable systems they build full spheres, but in habitable systems, they build the minimum to be "worth" it for energy collection. If they only care about one planet, maybe they just have a "hole" in the Dyson Sphere that allows starlight through to the planet and is designed to orbit with it, so they are always aligned (cue the inevitable apocalypse story of when for whatever reason they become unaligned)

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  • $\begingroup$ That is a good idea for the apocalypse I hadn't thought of that $\endgroup$ – Mendeleev Dec 27 '16 at 17:06

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