Questions tagged [physics]

For questions regarding the physics relevant to fictitious worlds. General physics may be off-topic.

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Problems with an infinite world [closed]

How the world works: It is infinitely large When digging down it is similar to what would happen if you dug down in earth, but the “inner core” is infinite, and never ends Gravity is the same as ...
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14answers
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How could physics possibly explain the sun hanging motionless in the sky?

Right at twilight, the sun stops setting. It just stays in the same spot in the sky permanently. What would have to happen in physics for this to happen? Would there need to be an event prior to this? ...
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Range of radio with no ionosphere

Given a planet otherwise similar to Earth, but which has (for reasons outside the scope of this question) no ionosphere, what would be the effective range of radio communication? I understand radio ...
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2answers
193 views

How to survive a fall from a skyscraper by having super powers to turn yourself into mushrooms?

Given: The character falls from a skyscraper, 200-300 meters high The character has a super-ability to transform their muscles and tissues into yeast, mycelium, fungi, slime molds, spores, and ...
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10answers
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Are there alternatives to mining asteroids/planets for obtaining matter?

I am reading We are Legion, by Dennis E. Taylor, in which humanity has developed the so-called 3D atom printer, briefly described as: 3D printers delivered individual atoms using a number of tuned ...
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3answers
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Seeking good physical candidates for total collapse of the universe we live in

Bringing this question over from Physics SE where it was closed: I'm looking for an 'as close to our understanding of current physics' doomsday scenario that results from something about the physics ...
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1answer
71 views

Inertia Heightening/Dampening Field [closed]

So you have a Force Field around you that can Heighten/Dampen different and multiple inertia at different degrees of heighten & dampening and even negation what all can you do with it. And lets ...
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1answer
168 views

It would be possible to enter and exit a black hole using a Warp Drive? [closed]

Well, a Warp Drive expands and contracts space, passing it through you, technically allowing faster than light travel. And so, it would be possible to actually enter a black hole and thus, exit it? I ...
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2answers
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Could Plasma be used by a monster to detect prey?

I have a monster in mind (based on something I saw in a dream) that is blind and deaf but finds prey by sensing faint electrical currents. It uses naturally generated plasma bursts to enhance ...
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0answers
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Working backwards with particles to get symmetries [closed]

I was wondering whether you might be able to invent, say a new particle or multiple related ones, with their spin, mass, charge etc defined, but not only that, also work backwards to get the ...
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1answer
136 views

Physics of relativistically spinning artifact

Say we have an artifact (in a medieval-technology world). The artifact is shaped as a solid of revolution: perhaps a donut. It weighs a few kg and is <1 meter across. It is absolutely smooth ...
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4answers
329 views

How far could humanity spread through the universe?

Assume we developed a perfect rocket, say a ramjet using a very efficient matter to energy conversion drive, within a few centuries. How far could settlers get with such a technology? The local group? ...
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4answers
125 views

Effect of time distortion on light

In a story I've recently started writing, one thing that can be done with magic is alter the rate at which someone moves through time. It occurred to me first that the colors they would be seeing ...
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Hydromancer's Parachute

I am a hydromancer. My magical prowess grants me two abilities: I can breathe underwater (magically) I can instantly summon a sphere of pure fresh water centered on myself that's up to 50 meters in ...
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2answers
291 views

Horizontal Lightning Bolt

So in real life, if you get hit by a bolt of lightning and don't die from it, you just sorta spasm out a lot and fall down in pain whilst the energy of one billion volts of electricity courses through ...
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7answers
337 views

Could aliens be more technologically advanced than us, but still know less physics?

What my question is really trying to ask, is if it's possible that some alien race possesses technology far more advanced than our own, but also have an interpretation of physical results that is less ...
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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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2answers
78 views

Does microwaves (or other types of wave) be able to disrupt radar signals? [closed]

The idea is that this next generation fighter jet would have some microwave or electromagnetic emitters to disrupt the travel path of the waves radars emits and "disappear" from the map, but ...
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3answers
483 views

There is a material that could be used like the Dune's Stillsuit to generate electricity by friction?

Well, even though I used Dune Stillsuit as an example, the idea I have is nothing related to the recycled water they need, just to generate electricity constantly through their journey to keep them ...
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3answers
160 views

Would it be viable to use air to deflect projectiles?

The initial problem is energy and the air. How would a mechanism like this work? Pressurised air inside a cylinder that is released when a projectile is detected? Instead of pressurised air inside a ...
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2answers
132 views

What if the speed of light were a hundred thousandth of its current value? [closed]

How would the world be different if light travelled 100k times more slowly? Would bullets travel in the future, maybe slightly in the future?
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15answers
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Plausible reasons for Hovertanks

A less common, but still cool (imo) feature of science fiction is hover tanks. Be they using antigrav, quad-copter style rotor blades or just the inflatable skirt of modern hovercraft. However, they ...
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1answer
143 views

Defining specific physics for a fictional element (or substance) used for airship lift

On this Earth-like world with three moons and a human society with early-WWI technology and Victorian-like culture, a material known as "Suspendium" propels floating airships to war. This ...
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Why the Warp-drive uses a 3D shape to distort space instead of a 4D shape? [migrated]

I know that warp-drives are just a theory and that they would require exotic mass (that is also a theoretical material), but, as said in this video, after some re-calculations, it was theorised that ...
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1answer
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Determining a Whackagi's Strength

If you don't know what a Whackagi is, please click here. My problem is simple; I know how dangerous Whackagi are, but not how dangerous they are to what they hit, how much damage they can do with a ...
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1answer
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How much energy I would require for a railgun to shot a bullet in the same speed of normal rifles?

So, in this history, they just said "screw it, I'm giving railguns to the army", and they added a machine gun like rifle with big caliber, but low recoil, they carry a backpack with ...
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1answer
141 views

Changes to water worlds to make them habitable

What changes/additions/deletions, large or small, minimum handwavium allowed, would be needed to make suspected water covered exo-planets such as Gliese 1214 b, Kepler-22b, Kepler-62e, and Kepler-62f, ...
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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 ...
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4answers
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How much engineered “sand” I would need to build an Orbital Tower that reaches the ISS?

Well, I do know that there are questions about space towers that have already been asnwered, however, none of them with today's technology, such as engineered sand. "Sand Castle Holds Up A Car! - ...
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1answer
114 views

Incorporating the fundamental forces as superhuman abilities

I'm trying to develop a story with super-humans where powers are evoked through the person's emotion during the trigger. I would like to give the lead the power over electromagnetism. Now, I was ...
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1answer
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Could a photon with negative, dark, or anti energy be used to create a freeze ray?

I'm not really a science whiz, but I know lasers generally use photons to increase the kinetic energy of atoms in their path, thus raising the temperature. Now I know electrons have negative energy, ...
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2answers
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How much energy an active structure would need to be a vacuum balloon?

In this question here there is an answer telling that it would be possible to make a vacuum balloon using superconductors, however, we are nowhere close to a room-temperature superconductor. Assuming ...
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3answers
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Would a hypervelocity laser “HEAT” round work?

Lately I've been working on a SciFi setting, primarily focusing on space combat. Something I've been working on is an energy shield that can reliably stop hypervelocity rounds (which are common in ...
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6answers
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Can a planet move itself?

Most questions in this vein seem to center around the inhabitants of a planet moving it. I have a significantly different spin on this idea, though. So, you're a big ball of rock spinning around a ...
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3answers
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How large can you build humanoid mechs with modern materials before they start experiencing structural problems?

I'm working on ideas for a game that will involve mechs of varying sizes and shapes and I am trying to establish an upper limit of size for humanoid mechs. This isn't about practicality, that is ...
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3answers
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Would a human survive being shot out of a trebuchet? (Not the landing) [closed]

For reasons, groups of humans are bound together, placed in a barrels or such, which are then loaded onto trebuchets instead of their usual projectiles. Would these humans survive being launched? Note ...
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1answer
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How much sugar and potassium nitrate I would need to make a rocket reach the moon? [closed]

I know the question itself is kinda crazy, but a rocket need a fuel and a oxidiser to work. And in this case, the oxidiser is potassium nitrate. Well, in this video, this guy makes a homemade rocket ...
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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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3answers
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Calculating near future spaceship rocket delta V in a vacuum

A generation spaceship leaves Earth around the year 2060 on a journey to colonize Alpha Centauri A (ACA). In this fiction, fusion power is achieved in 2040, improved over 20 years, and used within the ...
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2answers
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Could a self-consuming rocket be useful or cheaper than regular ones?

Technically speaking, all rockets are self-consuming, since they are basically tin cans with fuel. And to carry even less weight with then, they have stages. Allowing not only the rocket to go farther,...
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2answers
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What would a cold plasma based force field feel like to the touch?

As a plasma-based force field would simply feel really really hot and consuming end up burning anybody who touched it, a cold plasma-based force field would seem to be more in order. For convenience, ...
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3answers
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Could a ion thruster work in atmosphere with enough energy?

Well, some days ago I watched a video talking about the Halo transport ship "Pelican", which uses nuclear fusion turbines (don't worry, this question isn't about Halo). And technically, ...
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4answers
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Which space bodies have helium-3 besides the moon? [closed]

There is a certain attention given to the moon in order to use its helium-3 to supply nuclear fusion on earth. But there is some problems involving energy there that concerns me. A day on the moon is ...
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1answer
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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. ...
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Would it be possible to make a black hole using the Bose-Einstein condensate?

Well, my crazy question is whether it would be possible to make a "dyson sphere", but with the sonic black hole made with Bose-Einstein condensate (and whether it would be possible to create ...
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2answers
158 views

How long can a given volume of air in an airtight chamber remain breathable?

If we have a known volume of air in an airtight chamber (basically, in a spaceship) of atmospheric composition and pressure, and we know the number of people in the chamber, how long does the air ...
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2answers
190 views

In what sense is the physical world effectively described by mathematics?

I'm not sure whether this belongs here or in the Physics SE - please let me know if I'm mistaken! After reading Wigner's article on "The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural ...
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3answers
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Would it be Possible to Extract Helium in a World Without Fossil Fuels?

I understand that on Earth, we mainly get our helium from natural gas deposits, which traps helium atoms generated from radioactive decay. Would this process still work on a terrestrial planet without ...
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3answers
277 views

Would an Antimatter Engine be dangerous to use around people?

I was considering having the spacecraft in my setting use antimatter-matter spacecraft, but then I realised that at least some of the annihilation of protons and electrons with antiprotons and ...
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0answers
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Would it be possible to mine the metallic hydrogen from jupiter with our current technology? [duplicate]

Simply put, metallic hydrogen is obtained at absurd atmospheric pressures, becoming a stable liquid with very interesting properties. As a super conductor or simply the most efficient fuel that ...

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