29

Its less about occupying a space and more about setting a boundary in all senses of the word. "If you cross this boundary then your ships would get a tactical advantage in scouting out potential weaknesses and might be in a better position to attack some of my colonies. So if you cross it we will assume that action is happening and retaliate accordingly". ...


20

Could the characters go to the space and colonize Mars or stay in a sustainable orbit around earth? NO, for several reasons: As of today, we are not yet capable of even sending a human to Mars, let alone keeping him/her alive there Non-military rockets are fueled with highly unstable chemicals. One doesn't simply fill their tanks and leave them parked for ...


17

You might think of it as the outer-space equivalent of the Treaties of Tordesillas and Zaragoza. The situation is most space opera is similar to the situation of Earth in 15th and early 16th centuries, at least from the point of view of the European nations: you generally know where the big stuff is, but there's still a lot that's unknown. Spain and ...


10

Could the characters use a pre assembled rocket to escape Earth and colonize Mars? At best it is very dubious, for reasons that L. Dutch already enumerated. If space travel is much easier in your setting, this might be more plausible, but it is basically impractical from a present-day or near-future point of view. the virus [has] no cure, meaning that ...


5

Maybe, it depends on the AI L. Dutch already pointed out everything there is to say about a lone mans chance for space colonisation. But you mentioned that he has a "life-like AI". I'll assume for the purpose of this answer that it is an artificial general intelligence (AGI) and not an artifical narrow intelligence (ANI) like we got today. The protagonist ...


4

People can survive in hostile environments. In Australia, plenty of things can kill or poison you, including koalas and some plants. In Africa, plenty of western explorers died from yellow fever, but they pushed on. With proper discipline and scientific methods, it is a simple matter of identifying the hazards, finding ways to protect against them, and then ...


4

There's "open space" and then there's open space. In a planetary system, at least, there are valuable places in open space, starting with orbits (orbits that intersect my own are either threatening, valuable, or both) co-moving regions of space (like Lagrange points) or simply lines of sight (for solar power, perhaps, or communication). These places could ...


4

The general problem will always be supplies. Be it in earth orbit or on Mars, you will need food, water, oxygen, power. In orbit you will also need a supply of mass for keeping in orbit. The ISS for instance is not self sufficient, based on this answer. it needs resupplies about every 120 days. Now that is for a space station with more than 1 person on it, ...


4

I will start by saying the Star Trek idea of parceling up space is unrealistic. The short answer is that there is not a very good reason for closing off empty space. In reality, "open space" probably would work more like "international waters," in that a certain distance from someone's home planet is considered territorial, but beyond that it's essentially ...


3

Besides all the other answers, there's the concept of trade routes. If your shipping vessels have to physically traverse space between destinations, you will want to have these trade routes. Space isn't a complete waste of nothingness. There's plenty of things like black holes, various stars with dangerous radiation, hostile alien races, and more. Even in ...


2

The AI and the rocket are both relatively easy compared to making a sustainable colony which isn't on earth. Regardless of which rock you stick it on, or even if you just put it in orbit, you are looking at building an enormous green house able to sustain a human population large enough to be genetically viable. It would be HUGE. It would also be ...


2

It's a tall order... Based on OP's description of the AI, it has no prior knowledge of space travel, engineering or how to sustain life. While I believe that this knowledge could be gained over time, it would require extensive human assistance to interpret and filter the available data. The crux of the issue is that the AI needs feedback on whether it did a ...


1

The other answers detail why you want to have well-defined borders, but are a bit short on how you actually control your space. It all depends on the technology available. and you as the author can decide that. First, if FTL is instantaneous, there is no point. Dune model applies. If FTL takes time, but is undetectable until arrival, much the same applies....


1

I think you have an underlying problem here: how do you define your borders? On Earth, stating "the waters within 100 km from my coast are my economically exclusive zone" makes sense, because your coasts do not move with respect to the others (excluding tectonic movements). In space stars and planet have different relative motion, so it will happen that ...


1

The easiest propellant to make on the moon would be ALICE, or an aluminum nano-power mixed with ice. No need to separate out the oxygen and hydrogen from the water. ALICE Rocket Fuel Tests Another option is to use pure water heated with a nuclear reactor, making a steam rocket. This does not have the specific impulse of hydrogen/oxygen, meaning that it ...


1

It depends on how the colony on the Moon gets its energy. If they use solar panels, they are doomed. These can be destroyed easily by launching lots of small projectiles from Earth's orbit. They need not be bigger than grains of sand, they would be almost invisible, until they impact, and they would arrive like micrometeorites and slowly wear off the solar ...


1

The weakest link in this setup is the solar arrays. If they are on the visible side of the Moon, they can be damaged from Earth, or LEO, based lasers, and the lunar colony would have no way to protect them. It is a little more difficult to attack them, if they are on the far side of the Moon, but still they are the most vulnerable. Shooting lots of small ...


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