Questions tagged [science-based]

For questions that require answers based on hard science, not magic or pseudo-science, but do not require scientific citations. Contrast with the hard-science and reality-check tags. Do not use this tag as the only tag on a question because it describes how the question should be answered, not the topic.

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15
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3answers
3k views

What phonemes would a snouted animal (e.g. dog or cat) be able to pronounce?

Assuming human-style vocal cords, what phonemes would a snouted animal be able to produce? I'm looking at developing a conlang (or several) for a setting, and it has several humanoid species with ...
26
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14answers
3k views

How can a gigantic creature combat neural lag?

For the purposes of the question, it doesn't really matter if the creature's a continent-sized amoeba or a particularly large kaiju. Speed of thought is relatively painfully slow in organic creatures, ...
0
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1answer
95 views

How does my bloodless sword work?

A LETTER FROM A ROYAL KNIGHT I have a sword. It is an excellent sword, but it has one strange proprety. Any cuts made by the sword, regardless of their size or depth, do not bleed. Unfortunatly, my ...
24
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5answers
3k views

Where's the 'centaur of mass'?

This answer and my own both hint at centaurs being front-heavy or, as Separatrix puts it: Centaurs have a permanent curse by horse standards, they are, by design, permanently very heavy on the ...
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1answer
71 views

Power Crystals for a more primitive time

A recent coment on my Bloodless Sword question got me thinking: Could you make a "power crystal" out of radioactive particles suspended in crystal formations? In counless Sci-Fi sieres, like ...
19
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3answers
13k views

The Centaur--Let's Get Real, Shall We?

Undoubtedly, one of mythology's most iconic creatures is the centaur, a human being with his or her waist glued to the torso of a horse. For this post, we are avoiding the question of how ...
5
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7answers
624 views

How would Air adhesives work? [closed]

Exactly the question. How would glue or tape be able to stick to gas substances and remain "hanging" there mid-air.
12
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1answer
3k views

Where do Centaur organs go, and what size would they need to be?

If a centaur were to have one set of organs, how would they be placed and what sizes would they be? What limits would there be on the centaur's body?
-4
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0answers
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Altered Carbon The movie [closed]

Let's start out with a complex question that everyone should have a view on, that of 'resleeving' or having your conscious self departed from your physical self and placed into another. Altered ...
3
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1answer
97 views

Just How Omnipresent Would Cheap Cross Laminated Spider Silk Be?

In this timeline's equivalent of medieval level development, spider silk is dirt cheap, and cross-laminated sheets of spider silk are quite affordable. Portia jumping spiders were domesticated ...
3
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2answers
96 views

Would it be possible to produce energy using copper coils on the moon interacting with the Earth's magnetosphere?

How possible is it to turn the Magnetosphere and our moon into a generator? Lets say we have all the materials and labor needed to perform the construction and that we have the delivery method for ...
36
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8answers
4k views

What would happen to a star if most of its energy were reflected back at it?

For simplicity, lets use our Sun as the star. Next, a dyson sphere is built around it (completely enclosed solid sphere, not a dyson swarm or network, etc.). Handwave how it's built, it's not ...
4
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6answers
343 views

How potent would a dragon's fire be?

In the Game of Thrones TV series the fire of the dragons is "biological" and comes from two tubes in the dragons' mouth. In the second last episode of Season 6, the dragons Viserion and ...
0
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4answers
78 views

Superconductive Fluid to substitute blood for a biomachine?

So my biomachine person, who will go by bob for the question, his very unique. He has machinery replacing half his organs and skeleton. Bioengineered cells work alongside and support the mechanical ...
2
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3answers
81 views

How high could someone jump in Earth's gravity if an electric motor lifted 90% of their weight?

Context: It still is in the early works, there is barely anything to talk about the worldbuilding. But what I can say is that I'm interested on replacing hydraulic exoskeletons with a simpler back-...
4
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4answers
200 views

How quickly can a world industrialize?

I'm working on a project right now, and in this world I was hoping for a rapid industrialization and technological development. In the span of 70-80 years I plan to have this world go from the (...
2
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2answers
63 views

A Bioengineered Organism With AI

Would it be theoretically possible to produce bioengineered creatures with a mind that’s fused with AI? I’m developing a bioengineered race of creatures in my plot, and I’m trying to figure out how ...
3
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2answers
159 views

Are my "ZW humans" plausible?

I'm worldbuilding a human inspired species where females are larger than males. According to the explanations I've read about why that would happen with birds of prey, dimorphism comes from: Avoiding ...
2
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3answers
76 views

What is the strongest skin that a biomachine could possibly produce?

My man, let’s call him Bob, is an engineered organism with a mix of both machinery and biology working in harmony. His skeleton and half of his major organs are machine. However, cells engineered ...
3
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6answers
154 views

What would the commodity money system of an interstellar civilization be made of?

I'm building an interstellar empire that uses commodity money as its preferred currency. Despite the network of wormholes connecting various star systems, light lag between planets and stations within ...
7
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2answers
112 views

Agriculture on a 15th century era Tidally locked Planet

What would humanity's most reliable method for food look like on a planet where the sun never sets, great winds raged across the land, and large-scale storms were commonplace? I'm curious if large-...
67
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11answers
12k views

Let's weaponize jellyfish

Jellyfish are... weird. They're clear, slimy, and can sting after death. Sounds perfect for experimentation, so let's weaponize them! Consider a hypothetical world where jellyfish are extremely common ...
0
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0answers
54 views

Would a longer PETM make Earth hotter than it was?

Sometime between the Paleocene and Eocene epochs, there was a mysterious, sudden, dramatic rise in global temperature. This moment in time was known as the "Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum",...
2
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2answers
123 views

Would a Oil platform-like battle-ship face too much water drag?

Context: Because of a catastrophic war, a futuristic society was forced to use equipment similar to today's technology; and thus, use tactics and doctrines similar to today's military. So, one of the ...
0
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5answers
161 views

Possible ways of conjuring "matter"?

How could matter, or something that behaves similarly to matter, be conjured without absurdly over excessive amounts of energy under following assumptions: energy can be added to the equation at any ...
3
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4answers
118 views

What's the point of building a Dyson sphere if you're going to mine everything in a stellar system?

This is a follow-up question to Building a Dyson sphere while preserving moons/other objects?. User @Goodies answered my question with opting to harvest nearby stars. The problem here is that ...
24
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6answers
6k views

Can free-space holograms exist?

Holograms are a real thing. But what science-fiction TV shows and movies call holograms are something different entirely. From a classical geometric optics standpoint, in order to create the illusion ...
11
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9answers
709 views

What could feyfolk use for lighting?

In my setting diminutive races like fairies, gnomes, and gremlins exist and to handle of the cooler climates such as in Europe and protect themselves for their many predators many of them live ...
49
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10answers
6k views

Wondering what would happen if magic was constrained by Conservation of Energy

Would throwing a fireball leave a trail of frost in its wake? Would transmuting too much lead into gold cause a small meltdown? Would collecting enough power to cast a really big spell like causing ...
31
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12answers
11k views

In the late 1940’s to early 1950’s what technology was available that could melt a LOT of ice?

In my story I’ve devised lore where Greenland becomes a US territory, and they begin populating the region. It initially just served as the hub for numerous military bases and airbases, but eventually ...
11
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7answers
2k views

Building a Dyson sphere while preserving moons/other objects?

Humans want to build a Dyson sphere around the Sun. They have noticed that Ganymede's icy composition would be perfect for mining to get the icy resources needed to build the sphere, or Mercury could ...
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1answer
58 views

What causes the bubbles of marshes and swamps? [closed]

One of the common fantasy scenarios are swamps, marshes, bogs, tar pits or even sewers, with a dark and loomy atmosphere, and gas bubbles popping everywhere. What causes these bubbles? Is it the heat, ...
2
votes
1answer
91 views

What is the maximum speed an elastic (or other materials) could propel an arrow/fin-stabilized-bullet?

Context: A rebel army with limited resources and an army from a somewhat desperate allied country try to create an alternative to firearms, as the explosives logistics have been weakened and become ...
113
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27answers
18k views

If our universe was a simulation, what could a bug look like?

Let's assume, without revoking any of today's science, that the world is a simulation. What would a bug look like? I'm assuming that "the eiffel tower suddenly being bent at 45°" is rather unlikely, ...
5
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2answers
112 views

Permantly Fog-Filled Canyon

I have a canyon, with similar size and shape to the Grand Canyon. The canyon is carved by a large river, similar to the Colorado river. I want this canyon to be filled with fog so thick that, if you ...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

Ideal helmet shape that uses chiton armored goggles

A while back I learned that chitons have hundred's of small eyes that allows them to perceive the outside world without compromising the there armors integrity. This has also lead to some speculation ...
7
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9answers
817 views

How to make other stars visible to the naked eye in the day sky

In my world each person has the ability to call upon the power of a star; using it to further whatever end they’d want—i.e. using the sun’s energy to power a spell. However, they can ONLY call upon ...
3
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9answers
1k views

Technology for a sci-fi airship

Sometimes old, discredited or impractical ideas come back to favor, because a new technology has evolved. Let us imagine a future Earth-like world (not early 20th century or steampunk) that would ...
4
votes
6answers
258 views

What is a plausible reason for everyone to disappear/die except for one person?

Let's say that everyone on Earth disappears or dies spontaneously - except for one person. What would a plausible reason for this be? Note that this isn't something gradual, like a disease wiping out ...
-3
votes
1answer
65 views

Adrenochrome artificial synthesis

Everyone has heard about Adrenochrome and its supposed ability to be youth serum. Usual story goes that pure Adrenochrome could be only obtained by child sacrifice, i.e. by torturing kids (younger ...
4
votes
9answers
906 views

If I travel back in time and do nothing, just being an observer, would that change the past?

This is how time travel in my question works: You go back to a certain point in time, physically, regardless of means. Be it a spaceship or a time machine. So you've reached to the past. You know ...
10
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11answers
1k views

Replace pens by typewriters

It is 1950. I am a rich and crazy entrepreneur, who wants to replace pens with typewriters. I can try to influence (or lobby) any government in the world. I want my typewriter to be cheaper than pens, ...
6
votes
3answers
180 views

What Might SETI do with a trillion dollar budget? [closed]

Imagine a sci-fi scenario where there is, in effect, an arms race between countries in terms of investing in SETI-style efforts, each country wanting to make sure that if there is any intelligent life ...
1
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2answers
84 views

Advice for creating scientifically plausable human-animal hybrids? [closed]

What would have to be taken into consideration? What is the limit of human DNA modification? What sort of changes can the human organs tolerate?
7
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7answers
157 views

Is there a medical condition or neurological disorder that makes it so a person cannot make facial expressions?

I have a character who cannot smile, frown, express anger on their face, or make other expressions but can still move facial muscles to blink, eat, blush, puff cheeks and still feels emotions like ...
-5
votes
1answer
101 views

Could you freeze a nuclear explosion [closed]

The character who I'm talking about is faced with certain death and has to freeze a nuclear exposition that's coming right at him, would this work, and how would it. This character has ice-based ...
5
votes
1answer
149 views

What would climates look like on a world 1°C?

I am creating a world that is very cold (average of 1°C) and when I got to making the climates, I didn’t know what to do since the only climate tutorials I could find were for worlds around Earth’s ...
0
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1answer
40 views

In this binary, how far would the secondary planet orbit the primary planet and still have its own day-night spin?

A scenario I've been exploring lately: Orbiting a binary of G0 stars (each one 105% as wide, 110% as massive and 126% as bright as our sun) from a distance of 2.065 AUs is a planetary binary. The ...
8
votes
4answers
696 views

If colonization of the Solar System had to skip Mars, what other targets would humanity choose?

Background: It is approximately 100 years in the future. A base has been set up on the Moon and further settlement is ongoing (total population ~1000). The first interplanetary research base has ...
4
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3answers
187 views

The demise of the Bussard ramjet. Long live the Bussard ramjet. Can we save it @ Worldbuilding?

Robert Bussard's ramjet, as featured in Tau Zero and most recently noted by Carl Sagan in Cosmos, may be dead. In 1960, Bussard proposed a space propulsion system that relied on a nuclear electric ...

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