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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5
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2answers
74 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 ...
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0answers
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Endothermic/Exothermic batteries and the oil industry [closed]

I know this isn't a worldbuilding question or statement, but at this point, I'm highly concerned A while back I saw this paper, which had a science article about it, and like most science articles the ...
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2answers
375 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 ...
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1answer
139 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 ...
5
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2answers
132 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
258 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 ...
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4answers
409 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 ...
4
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3answers
111 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 ...
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16answers
6k 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 ...
5
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1answer
125 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
49 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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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 ...
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0answers
65 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
132 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
299 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
175 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 ...
2
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1answer
88 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 ...
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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 ...
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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
155 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
541 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
217 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. ...
3
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8answers
416 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 ...
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2answers
130 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 ...
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4answers
435 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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3answers
1k views

Would a pool of petroleum explode if lit on fire?

A large pool of crude oil 60 feet in diameter and about 10 feet deep. It sits atop a 100ft. tall stone pillar with a 5ft radius hole that leads down into the earth. If the oil on top is exposed to a ...
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2answers
212 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 ...
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4answers
1k views

Setting up a bonfire in a methane rich atmosphere: is it possible?

I am trying to describe the exploration of an hypothetical planet with a hydrocarbon rich atmosphere. Atmospheric pressure is around 1 bar, temperature around 10-20 Celsius, the main component of the ...
2
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1answer
96 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 ...
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2answers
285 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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3answers
113 views

Damage estimate for a large acetylene explosion

In a laboratory in a university building, a gas tap is accidentally opened at the end of the working day. The gas tap is connected to a bank of large acetylene cylinders. The gas tap is ejecting 0....
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2answers
189 views

Could Uranus have a solid surface due to its internal composition and lack of internal heat?

Uranus is the seventh planet from the Sun. It is classified as an Ice Giant, which, unlike a Gas Giant, such as Jupiter or Saturn, is composed mainly of elements heavier than Hydrogen or Helium. ...
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8answers
483 views

What is the most powerful, plausible breath a dragon could have?

I am working on a dragon project, and have solved how my dragon makes each breath, but I would like to know the most powerful possible breath, and how the dragon might make it, (fire breath, ice/cold ...
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1answer
90 views

Defining what is possible with magic that manipulates the elements

I'm currently trying to refine my magic system which is able to manipulate the elements using the body's natural energy. As examples: I can create water out of the air by coalescing available ...
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1answer
58 views

How could hydrogen in a vacuum be removed/extracted?

What reactions or process could remove hydrogen from the vacuum without compromising it, then from there a way that animals could do it, the vacuum is in a rigid space, but hydrogen still seeps ...
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0answers
66 views

What should an inactive planet's topology be for nutrient circulation?

I'm trying to engineer an Earth mass planet built initially out of pure silicon dioxide (silica). So basically, imagine a glass sphere slightly larger than Earth somewhere in the Goldilocks zone, ...
4
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1answer
199 views

how could a creature have a vacuum chamber inside its body

i want to know how an animal could have a vacuum inside itself (in an organ), survive, and also for it to be stable, what materials could be used to contain it, and how could it be implemented without ...
4
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3answers
275 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 ...
3
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3answers
140 views

Alternative Pre-Modern Rocket Fuel to Gunpowder: Can you make a naphtha rocket?

In a pre-17th century world without gunpowder, can rockets still be developed? Could you perhaps make a naphtha rocket? RP1 is made from highly refined kerosene, which has been about since at least ...
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4answers
109 views

How can an organosilcon lifeform break down silicates

I have a few organosilicon characters, and I like to know how things work. Some of these types of creatures make shells, but others just reinforce their organic flesh with the silicon. According to my ...
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5answers
212 views

What would cause creatures on a planet to favor large sizes over small sizes?

On Earth, there are far more insects by biomass than any other creature type. Not only that, but they constitute a wider variety of species too. As a result, they also evolve interesting mechanisms ...
2
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2answers
106 views

What kind of atmosphere is needed for large floating organisms?

Assume you have an identical Earth-clone planet, what kind of atmosphere is required to have floating organisms? What I define as a large floating organism is something about the size of a bat, but ...
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2answers
352 views

Would it be possible for a self healing castle to work/function with the “healing” bacteria used in concrete roads?

This idea is mainly based around the self-healing concrete idea that has appeared in the past and scientific posts have been made about the self healing concrete using bacteria to self heal cracks. ...
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2answers
244 views

If all life on Earth was exterminated, how long would oxygen remain in the atmosphere?

There are numerous other question on this site about "If oxygen production stopped...?" but all of them appear to still have humans around. This question is different. In my scenario, we ...
4
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1answer
167 views

Is it possible to determine the colour of a molecule?

Is there a way to determine the colour and appearance of a large biomolecule? If no one had seen chlorophyll, simply knew of its existence, would you, from its formula, be able to determine that it ...
4
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6answers
521 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 ...
5
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3answers
109 views

How can an individual's skin be affected by the brewing of potions?

potion brewing is a subsect of witchcraft with roots as far back as ancient times. These potions are made to serve various purposes in different fields. Curing illness, making an individual fall in ...
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3answers
191 views

I want my main character to start a Chemical warfare

So. Character from our world goes to Fantasy version of medieval or even Ancient Greece/Rome world. He want to use Chemical warfare to get ahead. Can he produce any kind of deadly gas? If so how. Can ...
5
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2answers
284 views

In a fantasy setting with 15th century metallurgy, what metals could have been refined that were not discovered in our own medieval period?

For the fantasy setting I'm working on, for a roleplaying game system, civilizations have stagnated into a 15th century technology and metallurgy level with some deviations to make for more ...
5
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2answers
111 views

Reality check: A fire in a giant cave with two entrances. Where do the byproducts go?

There is an underground city in a multi-level cave with two entrances; it is otherwise enclosed. It's shaped more or less like an inverted pyramid, getting narrower with increasing depth. A fire ...

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