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61 votes
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Why would a crash landed generation fall back to the stone age?

This is actually easier than you think, and represents a major shortcoming of our modern civilization - specialization. First and foremost, it's safe to say that all traces of human civilization on ...
AndreiROM's user avatar
  • 34.7k
50 votes

I don't want to live on this planet anymore

I remember a few years ago reading an article which stated that a manned trip to Mars (with return) for a couple of people could be as high as 1 trillion USD (1,000,000,000,000). This group you're ...
Ranger's user avatar
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48 votes
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Why do generation ships have large rectangular shaped portholes instead of round ones?

They are screens, not windows They are rectangular monitors connected to cameras on the outside. That has advantages to structural integrity, but it also allows the users to cycle through different ...
KeizerHarm's user avatar
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43 votes

Why would a crash landed generation fall back to the stone age?

Can YOU make a toaster from scratch? OR At The End Of WALL*E, Everyone Starves. Do you, or any of your friends, or anyone you know know how to... Mine and smelt ore? Make a hammer? Purify water? ...
Schwern's user avatar
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43 votes

Can a generation ship withstand its own oxygen and daily wear for many thousands of years?

Titanium Immunity to Environmental Attack Architectural titanium's unsurpassed corrosion resistance results from its stable, highly-adherent, protective surface oxide film. Because the metal is ...
Thorne's user avatar
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41 votes
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Are generation ships inherently implausible?

I think there's two things missing. The first is that we do hard things all the time. Its standard practice for humanity to do things that were impossible a generation earlier. I think the real key ...
Cort Ammon's user avatar
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40 votes
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Is it more efficient to send a fleet of generation ships or one massive one?

It's more efficient to send one big one Running 10 small sewage processing plants uses more power than 1 big one. Same with maintaining 1 big nuclear reactor vs maintaining 10 small ones. Same with ...
Ash's user avatar
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39 votes

Would this system work to purify water?

Do it like it's done on Earth Using filters and machinery is useful when you need it fast or compact but on a generational ship, it's materials you can't spare. You need garden/agricultural areas ...
Thorne's user avatar
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37 votes

I don't want to live on this planet anymore

You know, I'm kind of annoyed with these questions. Not because they are bad questions, but because people seem to forget what mankind is truly capable of when the chips are down. Let's start with ...
Fayth85's user avatar
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35 votes

Why would a crash landed generation fall back to the stone age?

Lack of Tools to Build Tools The survivors had equipment. Radios. Guns. Axes. Antibiotics. But radios break down. Guns run out of ammo. Axes get dull, and grinding them wears them down. To replace ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 116k
35 votes

What's the feasibility of using the earth as a generation ship

Planting bombs to leave orbit is utterly infeasible and is a scale error. There are many questions here already about moving planets and you can read the extensive discussions that have already taken ...
JDługosz's user avatar
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35 votes
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Keeping a healthy immune system on a generation-ship

Pets and other animals While it seems wasteful to have live pets in the resource limited environment of a generation ship, their influence on mental wellbeing should not be underestimated. In this ...
Separatrix's user avatar
  • 118k
34 votes

How fast can a ship with rotating habitats be accelerated?

Can a ship with a rotating habitat be stable as it travels space that fast for years? The speed it travels at is irrelevant. The stability is important, but quite unrelated... the interesting ...
Starfish Prime's user avatar
34 votes

Are generation ships inherently implausible?

Let's split this question to some parts that I deduced from your question 1. Why would anyone work on something that they will never be able to use? First, there are people who are interested in ...
Dorian's user avatar
  • 1,129
33 votes

Why do generation ships have large rectangular shaped portholes instead of round ones?

The passengers installed these windows. This, among many other modifications to the ship en route. The windows were made by removing a panel and replacing it with a clear plastic sheet. The panels ...
Willk's user avatar
  • 305k
32 votes

I don't want to live on this planet anymore

You are only taking 500 people. That may sound like a lot, but it is not when you are considering breeding populations, genetic diversity, and so on. With only 500 people: Everyone has to breed to ...
DrBob's user avatar
  • 10.4k
29 votes

Is it more efficient to send a fleet of generation ships or one massive one?

As already pointed out in other answers/comment, a single big ship is more efficient BUT will increase the chances that a single, catastrophic failure leads the entire mission to failure. A reasonable ...
L.Dutch's user avatar
  • 289k
28 votes

Should I use base-10 or base-12 numbers in my story?

Step back from the context of worldbuilding for a moment, and look at this from the context of storytelling. What purpose does the number system serve in your story? In-universe a different base might ...
FirstLastname's user avatar
25 votes

Are generation ships inherently implausible?

Flip the question around Let us accept the premise that a generation ship is not viable without the technological ingredients for a post-scarcity utopia. Now add the assumption that this situation ...
KerrAvon2055's user avatar
  • 27.8k
22 votes

Why do generation ships have large rectangular shaped portholes instead of round ones?

Actually - we do have angular windows in space. Round windows on aircraft are more the result of reducing metal fatigue. The curvature of the window is more for the corners to not be sharp and form ...
flox's user avatar
  • 22k
20 votes

Keeping a healthy immune system on a generation-ship

Vaccines+ While you're probably not at risk of several of the diseases that vaccines help against in such a controlled environment, you could still use vaccines to keep the immune system active. It ...
Spoki0 - Reinstate Monica's user avatar
19 votes
Accepted

How do I make oxygen for a generation ship?

Closed cycle life support systems (CLSS) are the only way to go for prolonged space travel or even space stations and colonies orbiting a Sun. As pointed out, the real problem is making up losses ...
Thucydides's user avatar
  • 97.7k
19 votes

Why would a crash landed generation fall back to the stone age?

"Primitive" humans have a huge amount of technology. Much of it we take for granted. Farmable crops and domesticated animals are a multi-generation project. So those are right out. Both of these ...
Yakk's user avatar
  • 15.6k
19 votes

Hiding a handful of immortals on a Generation Ship?

Hide as the crew of a cryogenic ship. Realize that cryogenic is the more advanced form of ship. It allows people to travel in their own lifetimes. If a civilization has workable cryogenics, it ...
Brythan's user avatar
  • 25.3k
18 votes
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Hiding a handful of immortals on a Generation Ship?

I think the key is that no individual should encounter any particular immortal for a period of longer than a decade or two, whether as a neighbor, coworker, or service provider. After about 20 years ...
workerjoe's user avatar
  • 6,629
18 votes

Can a generation ship withstand its own oxygen and daily wear for many thousands of years?

You need to fundamentally abandon the idea of building a generation ship, and sending it off into deep space. A generation ship needs to be self sustaining, which includes the capability to recycle ...
Whitecold's user avatar
  • 2,678
17 votes
Accepted

Could humans survive on an alien generation ship?

Food, water, air, shelter, and a few other environmental criteria are all humans -need- to survive. To this end, the ship is obviously providing these. You mention the frozen insectoids come in both ...
lilHar's user avatar
  • 2,335
16 votes

Should I use base-10 or base-12 numbers in my story?

Use Base Twelve! There are actual people out there that think we, in real life, should count in base 12. It's called the dozenal system. People have historically counted in other units, like the ...
PipperChip's user avatar
  • 32.3k
16 votes

Is it more efficient to send a fleet of generation ships or one massive one?

If shielding from cosmic radiation is important, big ships are more efficient. One of the major challenges for crewed interplanetary spaceflight is the health risk presented by cosmic radiation. This ...
G_B's user avatar
  • 1,992
15 votes
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Could ships in space use a Steam Engine?

Using steam to propel yourself in space obviously requires that you: 1) Have a steady supply of water 2) Have energy to boil said water You might be able to scavenge water from comets, etc., but ...
AndreiROM's user avatar
  • 34.7k

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