Questions tagged [chemistry]

For questions that have to do with chemistry, chemical reactions be they biological or artificial, or the industrial processes of chemistry.

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3
votes
3answers
692 views

A reality check on blood viscosity decreasing under high temperature

Is blood that decreases in viscosity as it increases in temperature plausible? It's supposed to be a biomodification that decreases the amount of energy the heart needs to put in during strenuous ...
2
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0answers
57 views

Ammonia-based Nitrogenic Photosynthesis

How would photosynthesis work if it used ammonia as a solvent and was nitrogenic as opposed to water-based oxygenic photosynthesis? Ammonia is a basic solution so it might need some other kind of ...
2
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1answer
95 views

What are some substances that paralyze voluntary muscles in the human body but not involuntary ones, and do not cause any harmful side effects?

The title says it all. I'm not looking for things like curare, where it shuts down the lungs - I need something that basically turns people into ragdolls but otherwise leaves them unharmed. If such a ...
0
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0answers
87 views

Formamide Planet [closed]

How would life on a planet with formamide as its only biosolvent be different from water-based life? I'm having a difficult time seeing what kind of nucleic acid and proteins might form in order to ...
20
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22answers
4k views

How can a magic-less cauldron speed up the process of a witches' brew?

Cauldrons are items in the form of large pots that witches use to make potions. These items contain the magical energies resulting from the brew and the chemicals used to create it. These magical ...
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0answers
42 views

Substitutes for lead-acid batteries

I'm writing about a setting which will be developing an industrial civilization on a planet similar to Earth in relevant ways, except that certain heavy metals such as lead, are much rarer. (Other ...
1
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1answer
90 views

Plausibility of plastic bones

So, how possible are plastic bones? Take clorox by Stephen L. Gullet for example, organisms use chlorine as a defense mechanism, which eventually accumulated in the atmosphere (1%),which caused plants ...
5
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2answers
195 views

Alternative to hydroxyapatite in alien organisms

A bit of a further expansion of my last question. I am looking for alternatives to regular bone of earth (hydroxyapatite) because my superearth would have about 50% more gravity than that of earth. ...
3
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1answer
155 views

How strong is Copper Carbonate compared to Hydroxyapatite?

I'm currently working on a habitable super-earth and was considering using Copper Carbonate as a replacement for bone, I've heard it's both heavier and stronger although I would like to know the ...
3
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1answer
108 views

Scientific explanation for rainbow fire or sparks from a biological entity

I recently re-watched guardians of the galaxy vol.2, and the creature at the beginning could shoot rainbow colored fire. This got me thinking, (as in my spare time sometimes I like to just write a ...
9
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5answers
1k views

Ammonia planets

In an alien atmosphere, where methane is the main gas instead of oxygen and ammonia is the main solvent instead of water. Similar to how photosynthesis on earth plants work, by taking in carbon ...
2
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1answer
205 views

What impact would it have had if BFCs had been adopted instead of CFCs?

In the late 1920s, Thomas Midgley, Jr. improved the process of synthesis and led the effort to use chlorofluorocarbons, CFCs, as refrigerants: to replace ammonia (NH3), chloromethane (CH3Cl), and ...
1
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1answer
68 views

Would it be possible to make a material synthesizer with a controlled biome?

So, the idea is simple: To use the natural processes of nature to recycle, produce or synthesise materials that otherwise would need a complicated industry to be made. I ask that because there is a ...
24
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20answers
7k views

How can a movie drive anyone who watches it insane?

I have an idea about an alien that conquers the world by assuming human form and releasing a film that drives whoever watches it insane. The masses that see it go on to destroy civilization in a ...
3
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2answers
167 views

Anyone know some Artificial muscles?

For this question, I want to have robots/androids with artificial muscles for motion. I know that there is a kind of silicon-ethanol muscle that works by thermal energy (the electricity boils the ...
5
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3answers
99 views

Monoreactant pathway for electrical power and thrust using only hydrogen?

In Space Engineers, Hydrogen is employed as a fuel for both propulsion and for electrical power (via the Hydrogen Thruster and Hydrogen Engine, respectively). This feels unrealistic to me, and I am ...
6
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2answers
132 views

Can any monosaccharide be used as a XNA backbone?

I'm not a chemist—I'm an artist and I occasionally write. But I'm starting to get more and more interested in xeno/speculative biology. When it comes to these things I'm pretty much just looking at ...
6
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2answers
96 views

Energetics in a reducing atmosphere

I am working on a speculative evolution project, which takes place in a reducing atmosphere consisting mainly of methane, nitrogen gas, hydrogen gas and carbon dioxide, along with liquid ammonia as ...
5
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2answers
422 views

Is there a weaker alternative to gunpowder?

How plausible is it to have zinc-sulfur as the main propellant of a gun in the absence of better ones, like gunpowder and smokeless powder? If it isn't possible, is there a weaker, less effective ...
4
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1answer
151 views

What would happen if all nitrogen in your body disappeared?

I'm working on a character able to manipulate nitrogen to his will, changing it's physical properties (like temperature, velocity and such) and making it bond to other atoms or molecules. Now, this ...
7
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4answers
421 views

Technological development of an electricity producing species? (renaissance era)

I have some intelligent dragons that can discharge electricity.(Lets assume they can somehow release this electricity through contact with an object/animal when outside the water, as air is of course ...
25
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8answers
3k views

Initial conditions for a fluorine hellscape

I'm curious what it would take to get a planet with so much free fluorine that you can have an atmosphere of predominantly or purely fluorine. I realize how improbable a planet like this is, so I'm ...
5
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2answers
150 views

Could Mercury have liquid metal lakes?

(Just to clear up all confusion. I am talking about Mercury the planet and not the element.) The premise of the question is based on a group of people who are driving across the surface of Mercury at ...
9
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1answer
275 views

Poison in the wine, antidote in the cup?

Probably every reader/viewer of sci-fi/fantasy has at one point encountered the classic bit of trickery: "The poison wasn't in the drink - it was in the cup!" - I am imagining a hypothetical ...
4
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3answers
119 views

Finding an ideal UV-transparent refrigerant, or how to miniaturize a Fulminium reactor

In my setting, I have Fulminium crystal reactors. Fulminium decays emitting an electrical current spontaneously, but at a greater rate when stimulated by UV light, and it also emits UV and orange ...
16
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16answers
7k views

Realistic way to damage bullet proof glass using common substances

Ok so here's the scenario. I've got a hero fighting a stompy robot that is covered in armour that stops the hero's electricity based attacks. However it still needs to see and thus has a camera that ...
23
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8answers
8k views

What's stopping me from inventing a planet with oceans of mercury?

It doesn't necessarily need to be breathable by humans. But it should be room temperature (at which mercury is liquid). My concern is whether mercury oceans could remain stable or would they all get ...
4
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3answers
332 views

On an established Mars colony, what would be the best ways to produce oxygen aside from using water?

Let's say there's a viable city of 150,000 people on Mars, the colony has been around for 50 years or more. Private corporations have funded most of it and they have a large presence on planet. I know ...
6
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2answers
582 views

Fictional drug where withdrawal is fatal? (like Melange in Dune)

Could a chemical compound change a human body in a way that a regular quantity of that compound is needed to stay alive after the first dose? The short answer would be yes, there are already such ...
4
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6answers
528 views

What single or two materials are suitable to fit inside of a glass bullet to make it explode on impact?

In the world my friend and I are making, the different races throughout the planet have decided to work on advancing the development of Airgun technology. The main reason for this was that once ...
6
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4answers
320 views

How can an environmentally conscious dragon avoid uneccesary damage when using his acidic breath?

So, I decided to up the ante with dragons and make them much more destructive by giving the aqua regia as the breath weapon. The problem is that the dragon in this story is a sweet and cheeky kid, ...
5
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1answer
133 views

What substance would make a good lava ocean?

I'm starting work on some fictional star systems, and I want to create a planet that has lava oceans. I found an excel spreadsheet a while back that does calculations for stars and planets, and based ...
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1answer
50 views

Rotating ice lake of high molar hydrochloric acid

Say I have a rocky airless world with size and density to produce two gees orbiting around an old dim star. Could I have a round(ish) lake with a high molar hydrochloric acid ice? It could be ...
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0answers
82 views

Is it possible to extract energy from blood to power prosthesis?

I know this question is kinda weird, but there is a real problem with prosthesis and implants inside or outside of you, normally they need a source of energy. If you extract the energy from your own ...
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3answers
136 views

Making minefields with potash

Many modern explosives would have changed the history of sieges and raids. A modern phoenix bomb (american claymore) can injure and entire shieldwall of soldiers. A field of mines and phoenixes and ...
3
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2answers
332 views

How can I mass produce steel without coal?

So, Suppose for a moment that there is a society on the verge of an industrial revolution. They live on a super-continent. The continent has a circumference of around 40,000 kilometers (If I recall ...
5
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1answer
188 views

What would we notice if the fine structure constant started to increase?

What would we notice if the fine structure constant started to increase? Wikipedia says: For instance, were α to change by 4%, stellar fusion would not produce carbon, so that carbon-based life would ...
29
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8answers
7k views

What happens if King Midas produces gold en-masse

Suppose King Midas learns to turn off his power to turn things into gold, and passes on that ability to his children. A few centuries later, King Midas has thousands of descendants, all of whom can ...
2
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1answer
96 views

What color would plants be on a hot spring planet? [duplicate]

I had an idea for an alien world I want to set a story on and if this question proves popular I might ask other questions regarding this world. The world in question is an earth like moon orbiting a ...
3
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8answers
448 views

What's The Most Dangerous Chemicals I Can Make From Air?

Let's say that I have a special sword that has macroscopic maximum thickness, and has a minimum thickness of 1 atom. It's also incredibly wear-resistant, which would make it usable. Let's say that I ...
15
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8answers
2k views

Portable source of fire for use by a flame-mage

A character in my world has the ability to greatly control flames. He can even amplify a small fire to a large inferno if necessary. However, there is one problem: He can't create fire out of nothing. ...
5
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2answers
182 views

Tungsten-based life using molten sodium chloride as solvent

My idea is to have organisms that use molten salt as their solvent in the chemistry of the creature. So what I was thinking to have the cells consist of tungsten polyoxometalates but my issue is the ...
6
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4answers
557 views

What are you actually moving when telekinetically moving/shaping fire?

Ok, so I'm willing to bet at least one person has looked at the title of this question and thought to themselves "What?", so I'll try and explain this as thoroughly as I can. Most ...
3
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1answer
228 views

How long does an iron cage remain effective underwater

I'm working on an idea similar to the one presented in the Old Guard; basically an immortal character is trapped in an iron casing from which they cannot escape, that is sent at the bottom of the sea. ...
2
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2answers
135 views

Reversible Petrification: What is going on on an atomic level? [closed]

So, I'll try to keep this short. the petrification spell turns people to stone... or gold... or some other material. For the purposes of this discussion, we'll say the caster can choose any solid ...
0
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2answers
290 views

Is it possible to have a cold flame?

Imagine I have this make-believe psionic microbe-or-something that feeds off of the heat energy from combustion. And let's say that this new fire radiates cold instead of hot. The big problem with ...
2
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1answer
98 views

Twin worlds governed by nitrogen

https://www.space.com/amp/we-dont-understand-exoplanet-habitable-zones In the link above is an article about how atmospheric nitrogen could affect habitability of a planet. Examples given are a wet ...
8
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2answers
222 views

Could adding more phosphate groups to high energy molecules such as ATP meaningfully increase the amount of energy they carry? [closed]

I'm determining some of the biochemistry for some artificial organisms created for various commercial tasks, from industrial to military use. I'm trying to figure out if augmenting the energy ...
3
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1answer
347 views

Is this planet's sulphur dioxide atmosphere feasible?

My planet is highly volcanic, as such the atmosphere is filled with gases put off by the volcanoes: Like Earth Nitrogen also makes up most of Marhdii’s atmosphere at 43%. Also like Earth, Nitrogen ...
5
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4answers
439 views

Is it possible for water to exist in fiery places?

I'm new here and know very little about chemistry. For the sake of a story I'm building, especially with symbolism, I'm having a fire person and a water person coexist in a romance. However, I'm using ...

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