32 votes

Will nothing bad happen if I just create infinite energy?

While this infinite energy generating process does technically break thermodynamics, which has catastrophic implications for physics, it’s unlikely that this magic system would be problem for the ...
chai_tea's user avatar
  • 421
23 votes
Accepted

How would I pull off FTL travel in a universe where inter-universal travel is also widely used?

I am going to reference one of the coolest Aircraft ever - the SR71 blackbird for my answer. It was powered by two forms of Jet Engine - the first was the standard Jet engine the J58 engine - Here ...
TheDemonLord's user avatar
  • 24.7k
15 votes
Accepted

Could variation of the universal constants affect computation?

The problem is that too much else depends on those constants. If you change them, lots of things besides microchips will break. Like star formation, or the exceedingly delicate and complex organic ...
Ton Day's user avatar
  • 8,821
15 votes

Will nothing bad happen if I just create infinite energy?

Bacteria, fungi, and other microbes are the problem. If magic is accessible enough that non sentient stars can use it, there's a big risk that microbes can use it as well. The likely consequences of ...
Nepene Nep's user avatar
  • 38.9k
9 votes

Will nothing bad happen if I just create infinite energy?

Emmy Noether's theorem is a law of physics that demonstrates that for every symmetry in nature, there is a corresponding conservation, and vice versa. Momentum is conserved because of space ...
Mary's user avatar
  • 28.9k
9 votes

Is it theoretically possible for a planet to orbit a star that is orbiting a black hole outside of the event horizon? And what would it look like?

what sort of circumstances would there need to be for this to theoretically work without ticking off the science community too much? There is nothing inherently impossible to what you propose. We ...
ErikHall's user avatar
  • 2,456
8 votes

Could variation of the universal constants affect computation?

No, you can't do that If you changed basically anything about the physical constants, you're screwed. There's something called the anthropic principle which aims to describe why they are what they are;...
controlgroup's user avatar
  • 3,324
7 votes

Where would aurora borealis be visible if the earth was rotated to move its axis?

The aurora are concentrated around the magnetic poles of the Earth alone, and this would be the case regardless of the relationship between those three reference frames. The Earth's rotation has very ...
Anthony Khodanian's user avatar
7 votes

How would I pull off FTL travel in a universe where inter-universal travel is also widely used?

Broken symmetry of dimensions We're used to all three of our dimensions being interchangeable, but that isn't a given. If you posit a five dimensional universe it's possible for travel in the fourth ...
Robert Rapplean's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

Effects of a hypothetical "proton-decay" bomb for a fictional story

We're already talking theoretical physics here so pardon me if not everything here is purely based in known quantum mechanics. We actually do know that protons can decay by the weak interaction into ...
controlgroup's user avatar
  • 3,324
5 votes

What would a beacon of light activated on Earth's surface look like from space?

Unfortunately, Nothing The reason we can see beams of light like spotlights on earth is because the light we are actually seeing is that being scattered by various particles in our atmosphere (...
Amocito's user avatar
  • 351
4 votes

Effects of a hypothetical "proton-decay" bomb for a fictional story

One way to imagine this is to presume that protons do naturally decay, as required by some theories, but that your hypothetical weapon simply speeds up the process by many orders of magnitude. Since ...
John Dallman's user avatar
  • 24.5k
4 votes

Is it theoretically possible for a planet to orbit a star that is orbiting a black hole outside of the event horizon? And what would it look like?

A person would not be concerned with crossing the event horizon. The event horizon is a line where not even light can escape. Long before that, you deal with spaghettification which is 100% fatal ...
Cort Ammon's user avatar
  • 132k
4 votes

Will nothing bad happen if I just create infinite energy?

If it is a problem for physics, it's one you can easily ignore for story purposes. However, it's also a missed story opportunity. Consider the implications for storytelling if that energy is not ...
FuzzyChef's user avatar
  • 2,358
3 votes

Could variation of the universal constants affect computation?

Your starting premise is mistaken... One of the obstacles to realistic - yet interesting - space battles is that of effective computation. If all trajectories and whatnot can be computed much faster ...
Paul Smith's user avatar
2 votes

Is it theoretically possible for a planet to orbit a star that is orbiting a black hole outside of the event horizon? And what would it look like?

Yes, if you start from a well-separated binary star system where the other star is three solar masses or more, the other star may become a black hole. If the orbit of the star is in the same plane as ...
Richard Kirk's user avatar
  • 8,733
2 votes

Is it possible for a type 3 civilisation to use a blackhole bomb to stop a gamma ray burst?

A black hole bomb sounds like overthinking. If you can make a portable, quickly growing black hole that will last without caring, you could just put it near the sun and consume it (if the black hole ...
Terra's user avatar
  • 141
2 votes

How would I pull off FTL travel in a universe where inter-universal travel is also widely used?

Think of it with flattened dimensions, if 2d represnts normal space and hight represents extra dimensions then this questions has a more obvious answer. A car is able to let you travel fast on land ...
aork 123's user avatar
2 votes

How would I pull off FTL travel in a universe where inter-universal travel is also widely used?

Maybe not make it impossible, but EXTREMELY dangerous to use the engines interchangeably? This would allow you more wiggle room for plot shenanigans. Consider The idea that Universal jump simply ...
Going Durden's user avatar
  • 2,257
2 votes

What would a beacon of light activated on Earth's surface look like from space?

You could see them.. if there were a lot of spaceships, spreading thruster molecules masses out there in the void. Basically, the equivalent of plane-trails in space- meaning, its very faint and ...
Pica's user avatar
  • 3,996
2 votes
Accepted

Binary Star System Physics

Without a rigorous calculation, based on this equation, we can see that the gravity exerted on the Earth by the moon is about 2.2 times larger than the force exerted by the sun. I'm making the ...
Amocito's user avatar
  • 351
2 votes

Post-war apocalyptic desertification scenario lasting at least 1000 years

Notes: Getting Earth to be a hot desert without killing all multicellular life is probably impossible. (It's the oceans. You have to get rid of them - and the only way to do that is to make Earth so ...
g s's user avatar
  • 5,290
2 votes

Will nothing bad happen if I just create infinite energy?

One more alternate solution: Magic also removes energy. A wizard casting "create sandwich" creates matter. A wizard casting "fireball" creates energy. Meanwhile, a wizard casting &...
Syndic's user avatar
  • 6,582
2 votes

Will nothing bad happen if I just create infinite energy?

Frame Challenge In the "creating food" example, why should this actually create anything? Instead, for instance, A quantity of matter disappears from another location. Preferably a ...
David G.'s user avatar
  • 1,307
1 vote

Will nothing bad happen if I just create infinite energy?

As others have already said, humans would most likely never create enough energy for it to become a problem, but i'd recommend to not actually allow energy to come out of nowhere but, let's say, for ...
Aceffad's user avatar
  • 11
1 vote

Will nothing bad happen if I just create infinite energy?

If you want to go into strange cosmology, why not have a universe that is in a non-equilibrium steady state? Arguably, most physical systems are in such states. These are systems that are traversed by ...
Steven Mathey's user avatar
1 vote

Could a planet have metalloids but very few metals?

The development of the Humanity could be exactly the same until the late stone age. Metalhungry bacteria could be collected, burned, and the result would be a large part metal ore. That already could ...
Gray Sheep's user avatar
  • 3,646
1 vote

How would I pull off FTL travel in a universe where inter-universal travel is also widely used?

It's turtles Rift Drives all the way down... (Concept shamelessly lifted from John Scalzi's Old Man's War series; the books are excellent if you're looking for something to read.) Technically speaking,...
In Hoc Signo's user avatar
  • 10.5k
1 vote

How could this creature use firearms?

Firearms are Primarily a product of the environment that they are used in I am going to attempt to condense the last ~150 years of Military Firearm development here to give you some ideas about the ...
TheDemonLord's user avatar
  • 24.7k
1 vote

Is it possible for a type 3 civilisation to use a blackhole bomb to stop a gamma ray burst?

Aside from the question of the effect it'd have, a "black hole bomb" doesn't create energy out of nowhere, it extracts it from the rotation of the black hole. You would need to first create ...
Christopher James Huff's user avatar

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