New answers tagged

0

I think the main problem here is the feasibility of "remote hacking" of both computers and organic brains. Heating objects is the most crude application of effector technology, or possibly an undesired side effect of more sophisticated modes. In the real world, sensors can detect sideband radiation from electronic devices. A sufficiently advanced technology ...


2

It would be impossible to build a single optical train that could produce a beam spanning the entire spectrum from radio through to gamma. This is fifteen orders of magnitude range in frequency, from $\mathrm{10^3\ m}$ through to $\mathrm{10^{-12}\ m}$ (although open-ended at both ends). Producing a variable-frequency source is fairly straightforward: take ...


-1

The transmutation process - nuclear fusion - will release vast amounts of energy, as in miniature hydrogen bomb. Great weapon, but difficult. The US military looked at a laser weapon to do this back in the sixties - codename Fifth Card or some such - and of course they found that laser fusion is harder than it looks. Look up the National Ignition Facility ...


1

No. A beam of anything at that temperature would incinerate the operator, the operator's vehicle, the surroundings and any observers, too. It is a thousand times hotter than a thermonuclear explosion. Moreover, it is entirely possible that it is simply not hot enough to ignite fusion at all... fusion requires heat, pressure/density and time. You can, to a ...


5

Seam ripper. For insect military use rather than sewing I would remove both the handle and the protective tip on the shorter point. It is possible some readers of this site have not done any sewing. A seam ripper is backspace-delete for sewing. The long point is inserted into the stitches, which then get cut by the sharp edge of the curve.


4

One choice is to use building materials. Most will be iseful as a spear or stabby sort of weapon. But, a few have useful features, like Picture hangers could be a spear with a shield The one source is replicas used for doll houses of any size. Like this a 2” halberd Then there are unusual gewgaws like key fobs and lapel pins.


1

Hypodermic needle. https://www.caretouchusa.com/product/hypodermic-needle-27gx1-1-2-100ct/ Hypodermic needles are pointed but also the bevelled edge is sharpened into 2 blades. You can cut with them. For this reason hypodermic needles are unsurpassed for removing splinters. The point plus the two blades makes the halberd you are seeking.


3

Would a clipped human fingernail glued to the toothpick work? It is the only small thing I can come up with that has a curved edge. Most animals have pointy claws, but humans have an edge.


1

The best answers can be found in the basic differences between mining and military endeavors. Mining is a for-profit venture; war is an economic black hole. Mining is a venture whose financial backers expect to see a return on investment. That investment can be significant, but a high rate of return can very easily justify higher cost of entry into a market....


4

In the real world, I work for a company that uses both mining equipment, and "military spec" equipment. None of the fun stuff, unfortunately, just industrial equipment that's certified to meet the military's durability/ruggedness standards. I can say that there definitely is some truth to the trope, but it's not a straightforward comparison like trope ...


1

There are lots of good answers for 1, let me post some thoughts on 2. What could drive our sci-fi heroes to construction or mining equipment? Military equipment built by humans is designed to fight humans. If we suddenly run into an opponent that is decidedly not human-like, we will be scrambling. Rifles work great, but poking a 5.56mm hole in that ...


1

After a prolonged period of time, your explorers in .25g are going to have a difference in physiology from their forefathers. A good example of this is shown in "The Expanse". This will inevitably impact weapon design. High recoil weapons will likely remain in the purvue of specialists. The reasoning is that with less gravity, there is no longer the ...


1

John Brunner used this in one of his back in the 70's or so, a monomolecular wire strung across a road. The vehicles were fine, because glass and metal welds itself back together, but muscles and tendons under strain sprung apart, with fatal consequences for the passengers involved.


1

Well, the most wide spread scenario in fiction excludes most of those scenarios mentioned here, an erratic path of the monomolecular blade and some force applied, far less than for a super sharp conventional blade but still easily enough to penetrate someone's body. And there is inevitably a lot of motion because it is not some kind of science experiment ...


2

If your 17th century cast-aways departed this realm before the Isaac Newton published his seminal works, then they could have developed their science on very different ideas. A low-g world, recoil of firearms would be a more significant problem. The moment of inertia of the human form firing a weapon lets us sight down our extended arms. In a low-g ...


2

Well after 400 years weapon designs change, look at our current weapons compared to then. You could keep in some aesthetic properties with the design but 17th century swords won't translate to 21st century drones. The Gravity on the other hand does provide an important factor. Our tanks for example are weaker then they have to be and it is for a good ...


6

Military equipment has to be light enough to be transported - often by human power - to the unpredictable locations where it will be used for an unpredictable but probably short length of time, after which it might well be abandoned rather than transported back to a military base. Assuming, of course, that it is not destroyed by enemy action. Mining ...


6

It's probably fair to say that most people aren't familiar with the realities of military or mining equipment, much less space military and space mining. They see on TV that tanks and humvees look bigger and bulkier than their Honda Civic, so they assume military=tougher. They see that earth moving equipment looks even bigger and bulkier, so they assume that ...


4

Since this is sci-fi, one such scenario would be where weapons are cheap, but warp drives are punishingly expensive. War requires mobility, and that mobility comes with a cost. Let's say for example that it costs 1-3 space bucks per kilo to build a laser, any laser, but a warp drive costs 1000 space bucks to be able to move that kilo of laser quickly. ...


0

Military equipment has an expiration date, for all intents and purposes. If a war is expected to last for 5 years, why mass-produce weaponry that will last for 20 years? Example 1: This is the sort of thing we see with German Panther tanks versus Russian T-34 tanks. Sure, an individual Panther was better, but the Russians better understood the temporary ...


6

I want to offer an alternative perspective. The military pays for the cheapest bid offered, sometimes there is corruption involved. The equipment might under preform(think of the M16 in Vietnam) and the cost is mostly in human lives, but grunts are not that expensive to replace (unless you are thinking of starship troopers type infantry where each soldier ...


9

Is the idea that mining tools are designed to be very durable grounded in reality at all, and if so what's the reason for it?* Absolutely it is. I'm going to talk primarily about machinery here, and the key point is that in a working mine, the machinery works 24/7. The workers may trade shifts, but the trucks and the mining drills and everything else is ...


2

Money. If the mining equipment is more expensive than the military stuff, it will be better quality. This is not that unreasonable; mining is a multi-billion industry, vitally important to all infrastructure. A large, world spanning mining company easily has the profit to invest in the most cutting edge. It's not like the olden days when mining was just ...


41

No, not really. Dead Space is a game about engineer stranded on a mining space-ship fighting off space-zombies. Primarily, mining and construction tools are what he has access to. Secondarily, space-zombies in DS are animated by space-magic emanated by space-artefacts, said space-magic makes them impossible to kill and keeps them going forever. Main ...


11

is there a reason that mining tools would be made to specifically prioritize durability while military equipments may not be? Logistics costs. Mining is a commercial enterprise; if using tougher kit makes it easy to keep a site up and running with reduced repair and resupply costs, some spreadsheet wrangler is eventually going to point this out and things ...


9

Mining tools are made to crush, destroy, pullverize SPACE stuff. Things made in space scale temperatures mixed with space pressure. On Mohs Scale diamond is 10, the hardest mineral. Hardened steel is just 8. You design tools for that to be used days after day after day for 8-12 hours a day. While your military equipment is designed to "work" for minutes ...


20

Combat equipment has to travel long and fast. Take for example the difference between Light, Medium and heavy tanks. Heavy tanks are far superior in armor and weapons to light and medium tanks, but due to the weight of its parts it becomes a nightmare to deploy to the battlefield because of its low speed and high fuel cost. Add to this the fact that their ...


5

These kinds of weapons have been envisioned since the American Civil War, and likely before that Demonstrations of these weapons showed they had a very high rate of fire and were extremely inaccurate. This is because the projectiles have no stabilizing spin orthogonal to the velocity vector. Once the round leaves the centrifuge, it doesn't accelerate ...


4

Aqua Regia The human stomach uses a combination of different acids to form gastric acid, otherwise known as stomach acid, which has a pH of between 1.5-3.5. Admittedly, pretty effective by itself when it comes to destroying stuff. But it's composed of a mixture of two salts and an acid, sodium chloride (NaCl), potassium chloride (KCl) and hydrochloric acid (...


0

So, accounting for the lower gravity of the planet, there are a multitude of options opened up that were/aren't able-to-be-built on Earth. - Ring Cannon A large cannon, utilizing plasma and magnetic fields, could be built. These large cannons could be able to, using the plasma, fire large, magnetically-contained mortars of superheated metal. - Hyper ...


2

The microactuator described above is a scaled-down version of a base of an impact fuze. These are a combination of acceleration sensitive mechanical trigger with fulminating explosives to initiate the charge or rocket engine in this case The thumbtack looking affair in the diagram moves forward when the round comes to an abrupt halt -- impact -- and ignites ...


0

I'd say theoretically possible? Yes. Humanly possible? No. Hypothetically, were superman a real being, I doubt he could even slash a sword fast enough/hard enough to cause that kind of vortex/current. You'd most likely have to swing your sword at speeds upward of a billion M/S. For an idea of how fast that is, light travels at 299,792,458 m/s. So over 3x ...


2

Looking at the design of the round, it seems that what is really desired is a form of "Spigot Mortar" rather than a cannon. WWII era Spigot Mortar The illustration shows the gun crew aiming the small, lightweight spigot (essentially a long steel rod) with the mortar shell already placed on the spigot. The propelling charge is actually in the cylindrical ...


3

Here’s one option that might work. When the charge (green) is fired the main projectile (red) is blasted down the barrel of the gun (grey). The fin section (blue) is a simple hollow cylinder with fins attached of roughly the same bore as the central projectile spindle. When the charge is fired this section is hit by the back of the projectile as it leaves ...


5

Modern sabot rounds work for a very specific reason -- at the extreme velocities they strike, the hydrodynamic penetration process (the armor and projectile both erode away) means that a very high length/diameter ratio is more effective. This would not really apply to your scenario. However -- they key thing will be the failure mode of magic wood. Is it ...


4

I'm not certain why you're rejecting sabot rounds. A sabot is merely a disposable piece of hardware meant to position the round correctly and seal in expanding gasses, thus maximizing the amount of kinetic energy transferred from the charge to the round. If you increase the size of the barrel to fit the entire bolt, then fit the bolt with two thick rings of (...


2

It should be shaped like the biologic claws it emulates. Why would someone the the tech prowess to make bionic claws choose to fight with bionic claws, rather than some sort of weapon that let you keep your enemy at a distance? It must be because there is some cultural mandate to fight with claws, because that is what this cultural group does. Therefore ...


3

Don’t use fingertip claws. Use a blade stored in the forearm instead. The length of a retractable blade will be a function of the length of the body part it’s stored in - fingertip blades would, as a result, be limited to the length of the last joint of the finger. By contrast, a blade stored in the forearm could be about a foot long. By using a longer ...


2

I'm going to base this answer on how lightsabers appear to work in Star Wars - not on the actual physics of plasma constrained within magnetic fields. These two different lightsaber concepts produce drastically different results - and the "real" version linked in the question is not an effective weapon. Width doesn't matter for melee The Star Wars wiki ...


2

Other answers have focused on the force needed to move it, but it's a matter not only of force, but torque. Doubling the length of a weapon while keeping the width and thickness constant doubles both the mass and the lever arm, making the torque four times as large. And less gravity also means you weigh less, so your body is less of a counterweight, and you ...


1

No, this will not work. The mass of the sword will stay the same, even if the weight changes, and so it will be just as hard to build up momentum as in the normal amount of gravity. Once you have finally used a lot of energy to swing the blade around, it will take the same amount of energy to stop it. Your enemy can just avoid that attack easily and off you ...


3

It's not that you can't lift it, it's that you can't maneuver the blade at all. Your average medieval arming sword has a mass of about 1kg. Say you now ramp that up to a 10kg blade. It has the same weight as before, so you can carry it around easily enough, but as soon as you try to swing it, you're going to find that 1) you can't get it up to speed ...


1

The problem in a setting with low gravity isn't the weight of the weapon so much as it is the weight of the user. Imagine if you weighed 1/10th your usual weight, and you're trying to swing a gigantic beast of a weapon. Would you be swinging the weapon around, or would the weapon be swinging you? With a normal weapon (i.e. normal Earth-sized weapons), the ...


7

No. The problem is that kinetic energy is based on mass, no weight. So you may be able to carry these giant swords along no problem, but accelerating them for a strike (or any swordfight maneuver) would still be very tiring and slow.


0

Sure, they make great shields If everything weighs 1/10th as much, yet human strength remains the same (and object density does as well) than that means arrows have a lot further reach alongside all ranged projectiles. And, since ranged projectiles are superior when you're dealing with unarmored infantry, that means the range game is deadlier at farther ...


1

Guns are designed to take force along the barrel (the recoil from firing) not at right angles to it. If you use one like a cricket bat - much beloved of some model soldier designers - it'll a) be hard to swing - the stock isn't designed for that and b) break. The correct way to use a longarm as shock weapon is to turn it around and jab with it - you contact ...


1

A bayonet is a stabby tool. The reason that Bayonets were so popular in the napoleonic era was that it turned a gun into a spear - and the guns of the era were relatively slow loading. Also smashing at things sideways with an expensive early industrial age barrel would likely damage it.You don't (still) make axes with hollow handles for most part. On the ...


2

I think I have some good answers: Although as far as I know they weren't used by Napoleon's army, rifling may be your answer, and rifles were developed around that time period. Axe-bayonets would have a lot of disadvantages when attached to a musket type firearm, making it heavier, more difficult to aim, and an unwieldy melee weapon. However, assume instead ...


-1

Chakra (hormone) manipulation. By touching certain parts of the body the Hokuto Shinken user stimulates someones glands into releasing hormones. Self destruct is caused by vast amounts of adrenaline causing extremely elevated blood pressure leading to a heart attack or even burst blood vessels. To heal, hormones like testosterone and other hormones ...


1

The most likely rationale I can come up with is some guy who never actually fought in a battle in his life thought it would look cool. Have you ever tried swinging a woodcutting axe (or a pickaxe, or a mattock, or something similar)? It takes a huge amount of effort to actually use it, requires special application of leverage, and even then is far too slow ...


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