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Questions tagged [radiation]

For questions about electromagnetic waves and particle radiation.

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Using light as a barrier to block people without grilling them

We know that light exerts pressure upon matter. I'm imagining a hallway where an intense light source on one end shines towards the other end. The goal is to have the beam of light exert so much ...
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2answers
71 views

If magic were the manipulation of ionizing and non-ionizing radiation through a biological medium, how would this affect the body?

The idea here is magic is cast by altered mitochondria in-taking a new form of radiation which acts as a sort of manipulation net for ionizing or non-ionizing radiation depending on need. Then ...
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1answer
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Could someone reasonably clean off and return a child's toy retrieved from a radioactive fallout zone?

So... I've been playing a lot of the video game Subnautica lately, which put me in the mood for a "trying to cope with being marooned on an alien planet" sort of story; however, there's something in ...
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1answer
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Worms that create wormholes - can we find and track them underground?

In a future Earth it has been discovered that earthworms can actually create wormholes. There is a lot more to this and I will be asking other questions, however at this point I just want to know if ...
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7answers
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How can I explain why Screamers weren’t created in Hiroshima and Nagasaki’s aftermath's?

So, in my post-nuclear US, a form of mutant, called “Screamers” are somewhat prevalent. They are stronger and stockier than humans, and are hairless and greenish-beige pigmented. As it turns out, ...
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3answers
97 views

Effects of high-intensity radiation on the undead?

What would happen if a zombie got caught too close to a reactor meltdown, or a vampire decided to intentionally dose themselves with lethal radiation meant to sterilize machine parts? Would enough ...
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4answers
105 views

Condensation via Electromagnetic Radiation

I'm envisioning a creature or plant that consumes magical energy, and which produces localized rainfall as a byproduct. If the consumption of this magical energy produces localized effects related to ...
14
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1answer
262 views

Radiation Levels and Effects on Planet with 27 Suns

Other posts from this thread will be posted here: How to make an Earth with 27 suns work (Closed as a duplicate of the follow up, Attempt Two) How To Make an Earth with 27 Suns Work, Attempt Two: ...
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3answers
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Is it possible for an organism to convert magnetic radiation into a sustainable energy source?

For backgrounds sake, let's say that there are large, and I mean large beings living underneath the icy surface of Europa. Now consider this excerpt from NASA's page on Europa: One of the most ...
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24answers
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How would primitive peoples detect radiation?

In an environment in which acute radiation hazards are common what tools or techniques could be employed by primitive people to detect and thereby avoid radiation exposure? These people do not ...
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4answers
258 views

Why would a radioactive moon not give everyone cancer?

The moon in question is composed entirely of a radioactive substance, and showers the earth with strong radiation. It is responsible for a particular kind of cancer that causes the cells to multiply ...
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1answer
148 views

How could living cells harness nuclear radiation for energy?

Question: many SF stories (e.g. The Expanse) put living organisms in highly radioactive environments and show them consuming that energy in some way. How might organisms put into these environments be ...
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4answers
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Radiotrophic Fungus Organelles

The question is basically summed up in the title but here is some context: Context I got a character who has been genetically engineered to handle high doses of radiation exposure (50,000 grays) and ...
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3answers
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Generation ship: How big exactly?

So first off I will assume that the generation ship has a reasonable capacity of 1 billion and 45,000 people are the first generation on it. Also assuming an 8/1000 per year death rate(the average ...
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7answers
316 views

Permanent flag for space pirates

Space is filled with all kinds of things that are unkind to cloth, such as dust and radiation, and they are the reason why sticking a nylon national flag on the moon isn't permanent. In my world I ...
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2answers
123 views

What conditions could create an everlasting Radioactive Zone?

So, after the apocalypse ravaged the world in WW3, people in the western parts of Russia were in a serious predicament. The radiation in the Western part of Russia (Moscow, Stalingrad, Kaluga) made ...
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1answer
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Calculating Radiation Zones of Gas Giants and the Effects on Its Moons? [closed]

How would I determine the radiation fields, if any, of a gas giant planet? What effect would this have on its moons if they have magnetic fields like the Earth does, and are inhabited?
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1answer
184 views

How much liquid hydrogen to stop neutron radiation?

I have a spaceship that's powered by an efficient hydrogen fusion drive, but the drive outputs a large amount of dangerous neutron radiation as a side effect, and those neutrons are not captured and ...
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4answers
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Could a solar flare create terrestrial areas of background radiation?

Inspired by this question from yesterday. Solar flares can give off a large amount of radiation, but on Earth this is typically absorbed before it reaches anywhere but the poles, and even then only ...
6
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1answer
169 views

Small-scale aviation without fossil fuels

In my setting, fossil fuels do not exist. I'm handwaving an alternative behavior of radioactive material, and alternative magnetism-like forces. These are explained below. My question now is: Can ...
9
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5answers
339 views

Radiation shielding in the blood?

I wanted a creature that produces something in its blood to protect itself from SEP (solar energetic particles) and GCR (galactic cosmic rays). The skin of the creature is normally sufficient ...
4
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1answer
399 views

Tracking unique radiation signature?

In movies like The Dark Knight, Mission Impossible 4, and Star Trek: Beyond, we see characters attempting to track another person by a unique radiation signature emitted from their body. In the case ...
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1answer
267 views

Does radiation from other stars reach the earth? [closed]

I don't know much about astronomy or science or physics but can radiation from other stars reach earth? If so, then can radiation from our sun and radiation from the other stars mix or combine to ...
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3answers
235 views

Could natural armor plating protect a creature from radiation?

I was wondering if a creature could use natural armor plating to protect itself from radiation. For some numbers, I would like the creature to survive normally very lethal radiation, 30 Grays, for up ...
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7answers
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How would nuclear fallout affect the oceans?

I'm trying to build a setting in which humankind would have no other choice than to live underwater to survive. Suppose there was a nuclear war in which a huge part of the human population died, and ...
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2answers
142 views

What can temporarily disrupt Earth's magnetosphere?

I'm trying to find some type of space weather or other natural occurrences that would result in the intensity of Earth's magnetic field dropping for a few hours to maybe a week or two at most. ...
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2answers
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Can gamma radiation be used to generate electricity?

Since gamma radiation consists of photons, just like visible light does, albeit on a different frequency, isn't there a plausible way that in, say, 200 years into the future, we could harness the ...
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2answers
156 views

Are there specific gems, or ways that gems specifically, interact with radiation? [closed]

In my world, I'm looking into the prospect of having gems/gemstones interact (possibly contain) radiation. I am mostly considering Gamma or Beta radiation, but it's not a strict requirement. My ...
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1answer
176 views

Can midcourse flip pose danger at relativistic speeds?

Consider an interstellar spaceship. It is a rather classical design, somewhat similar to the ISS Venture Star from Avatar: http://james-camerons-avatar.wikia.com/wiki/...
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3answers
193 views

Effects of the detonation of the majority of our nuclear arsenal in the upper atmosphere?

Okay while approaching Earth, aliens have bombarded three of our largest cities into smoking craters. Obviously they mean us harm. So when their large motherships start to enter our atmosphere our ...
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1answer
288 views

Neutron bomb vs Nuclear Thermal Rocket (NTR)

A spaceship like this is traveling in the space: Let's say, that its 100 meters long. Its crew module have 5 cm of lead shielding, the 80 m long propellant tank is full of liquid hydrogen, and at the ...
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1answer
78 views

Dangers of radiation to space stations around flare stars [closed]

I'm working on a large project involving humanity spreading to other star systems. Most of humanity lives on space stations (for reasons dealing with the backstory). I was looking at the planet ...
26
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8answers
3k views

Extremely compact nuclear reactor?

Realistically, how small can a nuclear reactor get (fission or fusion)? Truck sized? Table top? Mr. Fusion? AAA Battery? Are there other physical limits when we include human safety issues? Let'...
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4answers
17k views

What would happen if all 433 nuclear reactors had meltdowns? [closed]

NOTE: This was adapted from another question that I asked recently. Apparently, a 30km radius around Chernobyl will not be safe for humans for another 20,000 years. The more recent 2011 Fukushima ...
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1answer
652 views

Could a nuclear war cause the majority of Earth to be uninhabitable for hundreds or thousands of years?

I understand that nuclear bombs don't have lasting radiation effects on the area that they're dropped. Examples of this are Nagasaki and Hiroshima, where less than a century after an atomic bomb was ...
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4answers
564 views

Inducing cancer to enemy politicians, spies, world-leaders

Would a state be able (with currently available technology) to cause cancer to its enemies, which it can't silence in a different way? (e.g. staged accidents, assassinations, imprisonment) Hugo ...
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2answers
226 views

Could the cosmic background radiation solve the Fermi Paradox?

The Fermi Paradox contrasts the overwhelming lack of evidence of alien life with the high theoretical probability of observable alien life. Groups such as SETI observe incoming radiation ...
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2answers
264 views

Does cell phone radiation really cause cancer? [closed]

Is the radiation emitted from cell phones enough to possibly cause cancer?
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6answers
394 views

Radioactive weapon feasibility study

I had an idea about a weapon which kills people using radioactivity bursts: Weapon function: It kills a specific person with radioactivity. It should be as selective as possible. Some wider range is ...
3
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1answer
692 views

Is there a practical method of storing a kugelblitz?

Could a kugelblitz be stored in a container lined with metamaterials to reflect back the outpouring of hawking radiation or would it require something more exotic? Could it be pinned in the center of ...
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2answers
245 views

Are there any other colors to radioluminescence?

You are probably aware of that certain radioactive things glow, usually a soft green. But is there any way to add compounds or what have you to achieve a different color, say, orange? I know ...
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1answer
794 views

What good is a radio after a nuclear apocalypse?

Suppose in a post-nuclear apocalypse world, there are still less than a million survivors throughout the world. Radiation levels in the air are lethal for many animals, sea water is contaminated and ...
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3answers
131 views

Could exoplanet with Earth's magnetic field orbiting a binary star system harbour intelligent life?

The binary stars system is comprises of a red giant with 6 solar masses and a Sun-like star, the exoplanet is orbiting in the Goldilock's zone with a molten iron core which generate a magnetic field ...
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2answers
296 views

Are there any issues with using water as radiation shielding on a Martian colony?

Let's say that after decades of development there are now cities on Mars. Most of their facilities are located underground in order to protect them from radiation and small meteorites, as well as ...
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5answers
872 views

Living in a nuclear bunker

Life on Earth has been annihilated because of a nuclear war. Everything above ground has far too much radiation to be hospitable. How can life go on? Living in a bunker would have the following basic ...
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2answers
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mountain fallout glasshouse construction

In the future (based on present/emerging tech) someone builds what is effectively a mountain bunker to survive a nuclear winter. But bunkers don't have natural light. So, the plan is to build a ...
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3answers
458 views

How could you rapidly increase a black hole's mass?

Say you were using a black hole as a propulsion drive á la Crane and Westmoreland http://arxiv.org/pdf/0908.1803.pdf- so your black hole has a radius of around .9 attometers - super tiny - around 600,...
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2answers
636 views

Could there be a (pseudo-)scientific explanation for a green atomic breath?

Everyone familiar with Godzilla should know of his iconic blue atomic breath. I've seen "theories" (technically not really theories) on how Godzilla's atomic breath works on the web. However, what ...
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2answers
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Could radiation affect human DNA and environment in a positive way and how?

I know there are different types and levels of radiation with different affects. I read about some positive affects of ionizing radiation like : Useful for imaging parts of the body and other objects ...
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3answers
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Could a creature evolve to have a biological Geiger Counter?

I was thinking of a situation in which a creature lives in a region in which the levels of radioactivity varies from harmless to lethal from place to place and time to time. It takes millions of ...