Questions tagged [power-sources]

For question about anything that can be used as a power source for a planet or civilization.

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12 votes
8 answers
2k views

Best electricity generation from a magical conveyor

The setup I have a conveyor that is 10m long and 2m wide. The belt moves at 15,6m/s (56,16km/h).this is a magical belt that when placed, will never move from it's spot. If you remove the foundations, ...
Trioxidane's user avatar
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7 votes
1 answer
199 views

What noise would a nuclear gas turbine make? [closed]

At the core of the powerpacks of the upcoming generation of powered exoskeletons are dusty plasma fission fragment reactors, in which nanoparticles of nuclear fuel inside a vacuum undergo a fission ...
KEY_ABRADE's user avatar
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8 votes
5 answers
4k views

Is There a Lower Limit on the Size of Fusion Reactor?

It would be really cool if you could build cybernetic arms with incredible strength, power coil guns with a man portable unit, or use power armor for extended combat. One of the ways this is ...
Englishman Bob's user avatar
5 votes
4 answers
1k views

Possibility of solar powered space stations around a red dwarf

I have an earth-like world orbiting an M7 red dwarf on the outer edge of the habitable zone(0.0443AU). Since red dwarfs emit more infrared light than visible light, solar panels would probably not be ...
Fox Studios's user avatar
7 votes
4 answers
2k views

Power grid on the Moon

Actually this is not an idea for a book, I thought about it after reading this article. The power grid they propose for the moon would require a lot of electric cables and robots that bring power ...
FluidCode's user avatar
  • 3,651
1 vote
2 answers
248 views

Gas or Electric for a Zombie Apocalypse [closed]

This question is referring to tools, like chainsaws and weedwhackers. Gas would be easier to get, being a liquid form that can be stockpiled, but gas tools are loud and leave fumes. Meanwhile, ...
Mace19's user avatar
  • 19
19 votes
5 answers
5k views

What fluids would be better than water for steam power?

I was wondering what it'd take for a fluid to be more efficient than water for steam engines. My current idea is a fictional fluid with three properties: 1) It boils at 80C, thus requiring less fuel/...
Salli's user avatar
  • 261
6 votes
4 answers
711 views

What should my green goo target to disable electrical infrastructure but allow smaller scale electronics?

I have floating islands with varying levels of technology that can be allowed on them, usually based on height. One of these islands has tiny microbe/bacterium that allows for food crops to be grown ...
FIRES_ICE's user avatar
  • 3,153
-2 votes
1 answer
82 views

Power Source in VENUS [closed]

**What is the best Power Source to use in VENUS to generate electrical Power by using the properties of the VENUS land? ** I was thinking about the RTG but I found a lot of disadvantages of it.
ahmed farahat's user avatar
18 votes
21 answers
4k views

Why can my power armor's magic lightweight fuel cells not be used for other things?

I have a setting where there is power armor along with a somewhat compact power source that powers not only the suit, but some basic weapons and additional features on the suit. The problem I am ...
FIRES_ICE's user avatar
  • 3,153
2 votes
5 answers
580 views

Magic - Applying Physics to Runes

I'm making a magic system, unsurprisingly, based on runes. - Basic concept: Scribe a rune (e.g. a lightning rune), apply force to it (e.g. shoot it with a cannon), boom - lightning bolt. - Problem: I ...
Hugo's user avatar
  • 91
10 votes
14 answers
5k views

What reliable source of power is best on a newly colonized interstellar planet?

I have been working on a hard Sci-Fi narrative of a first-time human colonization scenario on an interstellar star system like Alpha-Centauri. My narrative though uses NO FTL drives or other fictional ...
Ashimix's user avatar
  • 567
21 votes
8 answers
5k views

How much should a nuclear explosion be slowed for its energy to be safely converted to electrical energy?

Harvesting explosions by containing them in a time bubble. Here's an interesting sci-fi concept, which involves generating a time bubble in order to slow a nuclear explosion to the point where the ...
LiveInAmbeR's user avatar
  • 10.6k
1 vote
1 answer
111 views

Can a habitable world function like a Tesla Coil?

I am trying to come up with a fun planet with "advanced" but primitive tech. We all know Tesla missed some critical physics when envisioning his global transmission network for power. But ...
DWKraus's user avatar
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9 votes
5 answers
1k views

Infantry portable coilgun power sources

I am envisioning a weapons team that can carry around a coilgun about the same size as a recoilless rifle. The L55/12.M Crew Served Coilgun from Kaelo Engineering is the newest advancement in ...
Boo Radley's user avatar
  • 1,164
4 votes
3 answers
88 views

How to power and animate origami soldiers?

Set in near future, a sheet of metal can fold itself into a soldier with the height of a full grown men and can pick up ranged weapon. This is inspired by the folding of solar sail technology of ...
user6760's user avatar
  • 47.9k
2 votes
3 answers
214 views

Piezoelectric device for a mace

A lady warrior in this story uses two main weapons. A bow for long range A mace for melee combat This question concerns the operation of the mace. Within the head of the weapon, during any impact (...
Tume Duurka's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
181 views

What would be an effective solution for quick dissipation of heat in a handheld device?​

I've been wondering, what would be a scientific approach to cooling a handheld device that generates power by using an internal heat source, by the means of things like Stirling engines and/or the ...
Miguel Vieira's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
134 views

What would be the technological limitations of an advanced aquatic species? [duplicate]

My latest idea for worldbuilding involves a world in which the surface of the planet is 95% of the planet's surface covered in saltwater (there are still minerals and other collectible resources on ...
Nyctophobia457's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
328 views

What wavelength of electromagnetic energy is best suited for burning into a tank's hull?

Background: in my setting, there's a defensive directed-energy weapon installation that runs off of four gas turbine engines similar to the General Electric T64. Between the four of them, ...
KEY_ABRADE's user avatar
  • 12.8k
2 votes
3 answers
331 views

Harvesting energy from rain as efficiently as possible

The goal is to engineer the most efficient way(s) to harvest energy from rainfall using moderately advanced technology. My idea was to use this as widespread power source for a race of people that ...
LiveInAmbeR's user avatar
  • 10.6k
4 votes
2 answers
188 views

How fast can an alien laser cannon be charged with a magnetic field?

I have some alien laser cannons that I pulled out of a perpetual hurricane. They're cylinders that are two feet long and one foot across. They can only be charged by magnetodynamic coupling - that is, ...
KEY_ABRADE's user avatar
  • 12.8k
7 votes
4 answers
3k views

What Internal design would allow a spacecraft to be powered only by water?

Spacecrafts that harvest ice are not out of the ordinary, there’s even research being conducted about steam powered spacecrafts (steampunk spaceships anyone??). But I want to engineer a ship that uses ...
LiveInAmbeR's user avatar
  • 10.6k
0 votes
1 answer
71 views

What design adaptions would a wind turbine require to operate in a perpetual hurricane?

Never mind why there's a perpetual hurricane. This is about extracting power from it. Let's say that there's a perpetual hurricane that constantly "hovers" in one location - say, over ...
KEY_ABRADE's user avatar
  • 12.8k
1 vote
6 answers
230 views

What could cause wind power to not be viable

Is there any sort of reason that wind power could become more difficult to use/utilize? I'm trying to think of reasoning that a desperate earth based society would switch to using extremely reckless ...
headshothank's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
712 views

There is a material that could be used like the Dune's Stillsuit to generate electricity by friction?

Well, even though I used Dune Stillsuit as an example, the idea I have is nothing related to the recycled water they need, just to generate electricity constantly through their journey to keep them ...
Fulano's user avatar
  • 209
6 votes
6 answers
2k views

How do I make my soldiers jump higher

I need a mechanical way to make my soldiers who are combat explorers in a forest to be able to jump higher than normal. They will be equipped with a variety of weapons from normal hand held weapons up ...
FIRES_ICE's user avatar
  • 3,153
6 votes
5 answers
1k views

How could androids power themselves?

I'm experimenting with a sci-fi setting where human-like mechanical androids are the dominant "lifeform." Though the setting is based on science, androids live in tribal societies. For the ...
hatimani's user avatar
15 votes
10 answers
4k views

Vampires as a never-ending source of mechanical energy

Background Vampires are the usual sort. They sleep in coffins during the day and awake when it gets dark. Apart from the normal ways of killing them, they are immortal and so, despite their thirst for ...
chasly - supports Monica's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
153 views

Would redox flow batteries be good for the development of all-electric armored vehicles?

I am in the process of creating a somewhat hard military sci fi setting and was enamored by the idea of all-electric armored vehicles for a future war. For this I decided to used Redox Flow Batteries: ...
Efialtes's user avatar
  • 3,226
1 vote
1 answer
128 views

energy sources for intergalactic travel in fictitious universe with similar laws of known physics but different evolution

This question differs slightly from the many excellent threads on topics similar to this one. In the fictional universe I am contemplating, the same laws of physics apply as in ours, but because of a ...
nomadreid's user avatar
  • 111
1 vote
4 answers
151 views

How effective/practical would giant batteries be, both in power and construction?

I was thinking about a source of power for one of my civilizations. Chemical power, specifically giant batteries, have always been A cool idea to me. I want to know how realistic this is. I want it/...
Conan Highwoods's user avatar
10 votes
5 answers
951 views

Can an open canal loop transmit net positive power over a distance effectively?

I’m designing a society in a hostile climate which transports its energy from remote stations to a city with an absolute minimum of maintenance and infrastructure requirements. The concept is to use a ...
Vogon Poet's user avatar
  • 8,179
5 votes
6 answers
2k views

Could medieval people make an electric motor?

It was suggested that a medieval people, with a readily available source of electricity, would develop electric motors and horseless carriages. I had thought these would be too complicated to make ...
ArchduchessFerdinand's user avatar
-1 votes
2 answers
211 views

Horror World Problems [closed]

I have left Super Dee behind, and is now focusing to truly build a world. In my new world, there are skeletons, vampires, zombies, witches, etc. Everywhere, people bring guns in their backpacks to ...
Anonymus 25's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
62 views

How can a summoning circle dilute the effects of radiation over a wide surface area?

Summoning circles are a way to communicate with entities within the ethereal realm from beyond the veil. A mage uses the summoning circle as a bridge to bring the entity from its realm and ...
Incognito's user avatar
  • 38.5k
4 votes
5 answers
146 views

Alternative power that produces smoke

I have a post-apocalyptic world that is devoid of plant and animal life, although because of underground bunkers containing stored chemical materials and underground gardening,reservoirs,and mining, ...
Nicole's user avatar
  • 49
1 vote
1 answer
105 views

Fossil fuels production optimization

I'm sure that a jungle planet would probably have more fossil fuels than Earth, as there'd be a lot more organic carbon, which would get buried underground and converted into fossil fuels. We'd ...
TysonDennis's user avatar
  • 2,380
9 votes
5 answers
2k views

What would prevent an eldritch deity from gaining the abilities of others that it absorbs?

nyarlathotep, the Black Pharaoh, seeks to enter the realm of Earth to rule over mankind. Unfortunately, he is prevented from doing so by a barrier that blocks eldritch deities from crossing over. To ...
Incognito's user avatar
  • 38.5k
2 votes
2 answers
99 views

How can the rate of Mana output from mages reach a state of equilibrium during a spell? [closed]

Witches and warlocks have been working together for centuries. Witches have ley lines running throughout their circulatory system, in which their Mana flows through. These ley lines give them the ...
Incognito's user avatar
  • 38.5k
4 votes
2 answers
161 views

"AC" compressed air?

So, compressed air power is a Thing. Compressed air tools are reasonably common, and compressed air has even been delivered commercially as an industrial utility at times. But all existing compressed-...
Logan R. Kearsley's user avatar
7 votes
3 answers
390 views

Why don't Sci-fi stories draw energy directly from their stars using wormholes/FTL devices? [closed]

Science fiction is full of devices allowing people to open portals to other worlds, teleport, open wormholes, etc. but there are only subtle discussions about tapping into the sun or other stars with ...
DWKraus's user avatar
  • 63.6k
6 votes
2 answers
252 views

Feasibility of sourcing fuel from air

Is it feasible to modify a combustion engine to source fuel from air and oxidizer from a tank, in an atmosphere that has significant amount of flammable fluids, such as one found in Titan? If so, can ...
Erkin Alp Güney's user avatar
3 votes
4 answers
342 views

What is a plausible combustible fuel on a colony planet?

The setting I'm trying to build is perhaps best described as "Mad Max in Space" - except civilization hasn't collapsed and tanks and airplanes are still a thing. Planetary colony ...
Cygon's user avatar
  • 153
3 votes
4 answers
215 views

How can a soul be unable to resurrect from multiple locations?

I am a warlock who has committed many evil and despicable deeds in his lifetime. Bad karma has blackened my soul, dooming me to an eternity of unspeakable suffering in hell. Luckily, there is a way to ...
Incognito's user avatar
  • 38.5k
5 votes
3 answers
393 views

I need a 1980s suit of nuclear-fed heavy power armor

With a miniaturized nuclear reactor on my back, what does my late Cold War suit of CBRN-shielded antiballistic-plated power suit look like? Could it mount vehicle-grade weaponry?
Chasing55loom's user avatar
4 votes
7 answers
3k views

How can a substance necessary for organic life be harmful? [closed]

Mana is the source of an individual's magical power. A person's Mana reserves determine the strength of their spells. Lady Stoneheart, the Witch of Westeros, has developed a black market industry ...
Incognito's user avatar
  • 38.5k
8 votes
6 answers
742 views

Cons of Antimatter Weaponry

In the story I'm creating, a major weapon type of humanity will be Antimatter based weaponry. This is a fairly new technology, as antimatter production facilities have just reached the size and ...
Dawnfire's user avatar
  • 1,116
2 votes
5 answers
202 views

reactor powered by explosives

Is it feasible to power a reactor using explosives with today's technology? Just using the heat of the explosion to turn a turbine is not the idea I am looking for. Keep the handwavium to a minimum. ...
Zeronineseven's user avatar
1 vote
4 answers
160 views

What would make Mana bending lead to unrelated effects on reality?

Mana benders are individuals who can impose their will on reality by altering it based on their perception, usually interpreted as "magical abilities". These powers can take a number of forms, ...
Incognito's user avatar
  • 38.5k