91 votes
Accepted

What kind of natural armor would stop bullets?

Mantis Shrimp Claws will do quite nicely. Carbon is extremely abundant on Earth's surface and presumably any other Earth-like planet that the author may be working on. Given the many forms that ...
Green's user avatar
  • 52.7k
82 votes

Could Cobalt bind to nitrogen the same way iron would to oxygen in an alien respiratory system?

I think ammonia would be a good gas to breathe in an ammonia world. There is a lot of it handy, I would imagine. As opposed to N2 which is sort of an ice queen and reluctant to mix it up with other ...
Willk's user avatar
  • 304k
80 votes
Accepted

Advantage of luminescent eggs?

The species is parasitic in at least one stage of life. Glowing eggs attract creatures that want to eat the egg (since eggs have lots of fat in them, and don't run away or fight). (Thanks to an ...
RonJohn's user avatar
  • 17.6k
72 votes

Chemical weapon to kill a werewolf

Killing the monster with VX nerve gas or an overdose of fentanyl or cyanide muffins seems kind of anticlimactic. You can kill anything with that stuff. The whole thing about werewolves is that ...
Willk's user avatar
  • 304k
72 votes

What kind of natural armor would stop bullets?

Good News Everyone! We already have a natural armor that can resist bullets. I introduce to you the humble Abalone. After millions of birds pecking at these things trying to get to the soft, gooey ...
PipperChip's user avatar
  • 32.2k
68 votes
Accepted

What size would a diamond made from a human be?

Before cremation About 18.5% of the human body is carbon by composition. One gram is five carats. The average human being worldwide masses 62 kg. Note that people may be larger in some countries,...
Brythan's user avatar
  • 25.3k
66 votes

Will people keep drinking alcoholic drinks even if they don't get intoxicated anymore?

Despite the stereotype, people don't drink alcohol only to get drunk. It's a food or drink which has its own taste, like any other, most of which doesn't need to get people drunk for them to want to ...
DKNguyen's user avatar
  • 11k
61 votes

Advantage of luminescent eggs?

On Earth poisonous animals are often brightly coloured, e.g. Poison dart frogs. Perhaps bioluminescence evolved as a signal that something is poisonous, and the eggs are poisonous to predators, or ...
Alex Willmer's user avatar
60 votes

Why would a blood transfusion of midiclorians not make my force abilities stronger?

Because the blood level midichlorian equilibrium point is determined by your body's biochemistry. You can't alter this by adding more midichlorians. All that does is cause a temporary imbalance (way ...
Cyn's user avatar
  • 20.4k
50 votes
Accepted

Is homicidal smiley gas possible?

My chief reference here is Appendino et al. (2009), though this possibility was first brought to my attention by this National Geographic article. The Joker's real-world substance of choice? Oenanthe ...
HDE 226868's user avatar
  • 101k
45 votes

Why would a blood transfusion of midiclorians not make my force abilities stronger?

Midichlorians are not what gives you the force, they are a by-product of being strong in the force. Excess psychic energy goes into making the midichlrians. All that blood is wasted because the ...
rtpax's user avatar
  • 641
44 votes
Accepted

Why would an everything-eating fungus be unable to spread outside of Australia?

Because it is not a colony of independent microscopic fungi. It is a single massive lifeform that looks like terrestrial fungus. The lifeform has a centralized nervous system which controls and ...
Henry Taylor's user avatar
  • 69.2k
43 votes
Accepted

What would a life-form be like if it's antimatter-based

Potentially, it would be very similar to life made out of matter. Antimatter is expected to have the same chemistry as normal matter, so any lifeforms would work the same way with the exception that ...
SurpriseDog's user avatar
  • 3,883
41 votes

Plausible biological alternative for normal photosynthesis

You asked for hard science, so here it is. The key process in photosynthesis is the Joliot-Kok cycle. This is what "splits" water and produces $O_2$, along with the $H^+$ and $e^-$ that are used to ...
Dubukay's user avatar
  • 12.1k
41 votes
Accepted

Could crystals grow on living things?

It's known as Biomineralization Biomineralization is the formation of complexes containing inorganic materials by living organisms. This occurs in organs as diverse as bone, teeth, egg shells, and ...
Escaped dental patient.'s user avatar
39 votes

How can I make medieval folks addicted to food?

No need to make it too complicated: Refined sugar If it is before 12th century, the only available sweetener was honey. And, while enjoyable, it certainly was not as sweet as pure sugar, and has a ...
SJuan76's user avatar
  • 13.7k
39 votes

How can a movie drive anyone who watches it insane?

It is a trope of science fiction that there are so-called "basilisks" that will neurologically impair anyone who views them. These things are visual patterns/shapes/whatever that human ...
John O's user avatar
  • 12k
39 votes

How do I stop Bob the gigantic animal from overheating?

Biological methods to reduce internal body temperature: Increase surface area of skin, via cracks, and folds (mentioned elsewhere) like an elephant. Use extrusions of the skin to increase surface ...
Krupip's user avatar
  • 1,051
39 votes
Accepted

Will people keep drinking alcoholic drinks even if they don't get intoxicated anymore?

Based on precedent, yes, people in your world will keep drinking alcoholic drinks. There is too much cultural momentum behind them. Here are some other similar cases where people keep drinking things ...
Atog's user avatar
  • 3,412
38 votes

How does the Booze-Rat fuel its defensive mechanism?

Science Time: How is alcohol created in the first place? The easiest, and more natural way is through fermentation. "As sugars are broken down by microorganisms for metabolisation (a process where ...
Harry David's user avatar
  • 1,483
36 votes

Organism that can produce water on its own (possibly from air?) not requiring a water source. Is it plausible and if how?

You are generating new water molecules in your body right now. You just did! And again! That assumes you are an air breathing biologic organism; no offense meant if not. When we combine oxygen with ...
Willk's user avatar
  • 304k
36 votes

Flashbang grenade that leaves a (radioactive) trace on people?

A similar trick was used by the KGB to track possible defectors: they would spread radioactive dust on their door mat, and would simply scan with a Geiger counter all the vehicles, looking for the one ...
L.Dutch's user avatar
  • 283k
35 votes

Could a Weapon of Mass Destruction, targeting only humans, be developed?

Viruses are highly species-specific, i.e. a human virus will only kill humans. So a biological weapon will do the job. The best virus to use is beyond my knowledge, and I am a bit concerned a ...
Bald Bear's user avatar
  • 10.7k
34 votes

How can a movie drive anyone who watches it insane?

Does it matter? Sometimes things don't need a full explanation. We never learn why Phil is forced to relive the same day over and over in Groundhog Day. We don't get to hear or read Monty Python's &...
Kef Schecter's user avatar
33 votes

Could there exist a non-addictive drug giving the same pleasure as heroin?

Larry Niven's Known Space writing universe included a device called a Tasp which induced electrical signals inside the pleasure centers of the human brain. It's effects were described as ...
Henry Taylor's user avatar
  • 69.2k
31 votes
Accepted

How to make chocolate safe for Keidran? (Basically Dog-people)

chocolate is toxic to dogs, and by extension, dog-people You've genetically engineered your furries using human technology which is clearly very sophisticated and capable. The tools are obviously ...
Starfish Prime's user avatar
30 votes

What size would a diamond made from a human be?

Prior Art First it's worth noting that there is at least one company that actually does this. LifeGem creates diamonds from carbon extracted from cremated remains. Per wikipedia: The company can ...
Deolater's user avatar
  • 1,503
29 votes

Will people keep drinking alcoholic drinks even if they don't get intoxicated anymore?

My grand-grandfather was superintendent, or whatever it is called, of the workers employed by a farm for their seasonal jobs: harvesting wheat, grape, plowing the soil and so on. My grandfather used ...
L.Dutch's user avatar
  • 283k
27 votes

What could a technologically advanced but outnumbered alien race do to destroy humanity?

This has been done many times. The European colonisation efforts in India, Africa and Polynesia amongst others are very well documented, but many outfits did the same. Basically you provide weapons ...
Kilisi's user avatar
  • 26.2k
27 votes

Can a person be immune to all diseases and poisons

TL;DR: Powers as given: Not Plausible The Super-immune System A person's immune system is designed to suss out things like bacteria and viruses, and likely anything that could mimic it enough. It ...
Haylen's user avatar
  • 5,378

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