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Old Jun 18 2008, 04:07 AM   #1
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Default Possibilities of draconic space research

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And while it is a very common element on earth and therefore likely is pretty common on Pern as well, it's still not something lying all over the surface, all nice and easy to find. It's primarly found in the minerals rutile and ilmenite, which are found in rocks forming well below the surface. .
The article mentioned that those were often found near substantial diamond deposits which we know Pern has plenty of, so perhaps there is an easily accessible source for the raw ore after all?

As far as the specific sticking points go, in the far-flung future I can see another potential career for dragonriders: space-based research chemists on one of Pern's moons! You can potentially get your high-tech set up out there without polluting the planet, and it wouldn't be prohibitively expensive like it would be on Earth thanks to the zero-cost transportation of material out of the gravity well by dragons.
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Old Jun 18 2008, 08:34 AM   #2
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Default Re: Titanium on Pern

Mind you building airlocks big enough for laden dragons would be a good engineering trick.

How do you get the door to close, and the chamber to air-up, quickly enough that the dragon doesn't run out of air. Conversely how do you get the door to close gently enough not to damage any protruding bits of dragon.
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Old Jun 18 2008, 08:56 AM   #3
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Default Re: Titanium on Pern

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Mind you building airlocks big enough for laden dragons would be a good engineering trick.

How do you get the door to close, and the chamber to air-up, quickly enough that the dragon doesn't run out of air. Conversely how do you get the door to close gently enough not to damage any protruding bits of dragon.
No need - look at how long dragons can hold their breath for! Also, with good enough coordinates and a well-sealed large warehouse, they won't need locks at all.
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Old Jun 19 2008, 08:38 AM   #4
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Default Re: Titanium on Pern

I thought they were limited to around fifteen minutes?
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Old Jun 19 2008, 09:40 AM   #5
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Default Re: Titanium on Pern

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I thought they were limited to around fifteen minutes?
Yeah, but why would the dragons need to hang around in vacuum all that long? [*Considers asking Cheryl/Hans to split this into a separate topic of 'Dragons! In! Spaaaaaaace!'*] You could use suited humans for assembly of an airtight workspace/delivery area, and restrict the dragons to quick 'outside' deliveries and working within oxygenated volumes.
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Old Jun 19 2008, 10:56 AM   #6
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Default Re: Titanium on Pern

Are you done considering, Kath?

And, P'ter, why would a draogon need a door? A dragon can teleport anywhere that's big enough to hold his/her body, right?
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Old Jun 19 2008, 12:54 PM   #7
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Default Re: Titanium on Pern

Oh, go on then! It's really drifted topic, hasn't it!
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Old Oct 5 2008, 02:13 PM   #8
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

iv been wondering, im fairly inept when it comes to space science but iv read articles about people at high altitudes, if theres a cut in their suit, their skin inflating and the like in the vacuum. wouldnt this happen to the dragons out in space if the air in their lungs expanded? or am i completely of course here?
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Old Nov 17 2008, 05:02 AM   #9
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

Humans and other Earth based creatures are definitely susceptible to pressure changes. The dragons though have been written with a different biological makeup. In theory this could mean they are more likely to die of asphyxiation than to become a rather large piece of popped corn. Secondary point, its was hinted in ATWoP that the dragons have been exercising telekenesis in a rather subconscious level, getting themselves airborne despite the fact that they had mass far in excess of their own body mass. So using the Loony tunes, and a touch of Doug Adams logic, if the dragons didn't know they were supposed to pop in extreme low pressures, they wouldn't, because they held their cells together by sheer belief.

Now about those moon bases. Dragons bring material and smiths out to moon, drop cargo and personnel then go back for air, with their riders. second wave of riders, and relief personnel come out as time limit for air is being reached. I think the building of a pressure tight Dome, and filling it would end up being done on Pern. I can't see the pernese being too proficient at forming and sealing a construct like that in space if they can just have the dragons take the finished product up in one hop.
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Old Nov 17 2008, 11:19 AM   #10
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

But with the pressure thing, how strong is pressure? I've seen videos of steel fuel tankers folding up if theres a vacuum inside them, so how do spacesuits and spaceships work with a giant vacuum outside?
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Old Nov 18 2008, 09:56 AM   #11
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

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But with the pressure thing, how strong is pressure? I've seen videos of steel fuel tankers folding up if theres a vacuum inside them, so how do spacesuits and spaceships work with a giant vacuum outside?

Spacesuits are normally at .25 - .20 atmospheric pressure with pure O2 for breathing.

I'm not sure about the spaceships, they are probably at a reduced atmosphere, but not quite as much.

But we know the dragons can handle a certain amount of time in space as they did so in AtWoP. I wouldn't think that space would be that much worse than Between.

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Old Nov 18 2008, 01:27 PM   #12
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Spacesuits are normally at .25 - .20 atmospheric pressure with pure O2 for breathing.
This is probably a really incredibly stupid question, but don't people use oxygen to get high? I would've thought NASA would want to avoid a lightly stoned astronaut
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Old Nov 18 2008, 05:09 PM   #13
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

I don't think they get high, probably, but NASA doesn't tell anyone.;-) . I do know that before and after a space walk they have take about 1-2 hours acclimate to the atmosphere used in the suit. Weather that's the pressure and or actual content, I have to look that up. Add the two hours per entry/exit to his/her 6-8 hour space walk, that's a wickedly long day.

On Pern, rhe humans who'd be working on affixing a finished dome would have to do the pressurization step before and after their space walks. I don't think they'd have the dragons in space suits they'd hate being closed in a suit with their wings being hampered. They'd have to religaited to between trips up and back transporting.

Now what is the maximum distance one can 'go between'? Has someone made it to one of the moons? I do know they'd made it to one of the ships in orbit. (Note to self: buy the book and read HOW they did that one.)
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Old Nov 18 2008, 06:30 PM   #14
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

I thought they include nitrogen in the mix to prevent explosions?
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Old Nov 18 2008, 07:40 PM   #15
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

I think they do but accidents can happen.
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Old Nov 19 2008, 08:15 AM   #16
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

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Now what is the maximum distance one can 'go between'? Has someone made it to one of the moons? I do know they'd made it to one of the ships in orbit. (Note to self: buy the book and read HOW they did that one.)
Well, they made it to the Red Star, which is certainly MUCH farther than their moons. I think as long as both dragon and rider have sufficient oxygen to last them through the wait, it's potentially unlimited. I don't know if there would be any physical strain from the mere act of making a huge leap though.
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Old Nov 19 2008, 10:41 AM   #17
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

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This is probably a really incredibly stupid question, but don't people use oxygen to get high? I would've thought NASA would want to avoid a lightly stoned astronaut

On earth, O2 is ~20% of the atmosphere (at 1 atmospheric pressure).

Is a space suit, the atmosphere is at .20 atmospheric pressures, but 100% 02.

So if you do the math, you find that an astronaut is only getting the normal 02 that they get on earth.

Also, it is doubtful that they would use Nitrogen in the space suit, as that could cause problems similar to what divers suffer when they surface too quickly. And this is probably the reason why it take them 2 hours to depressurize before going outside of the spaceship (because the spaceship probably does have nitrogen in the atmosphere).

It would be possible to use an inert gas, such as Helium, mixed with the O2 that the astronauts breathe, but if you lower the concentration of O2 too much, then the astronauts would black out from lack of O2.

I think there are two reasons why the suits are designed to operate at about .20-.25 atmospheres.
1. Any more, and they would look like the Stay-Puff marshmallow man (or the Michelin man), and they would not be able to move their arms and legs.
2. Any lower, and they would not be able to get enough O2 to keep from passing out.

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Old Nov 19 2008, 10:43 AM   #18
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

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Well, they made it to the Red Star, which is certainly MUCH farther than their moons. I think as long as both dragon and rider have sufficient oxygen to last them through the wait, it's potentially unlimited. I don't know if there would be any physical strain from the mere act of making a huge leap though.
See Lessa's Ride for the physical and mental strain of staying Between for too long.

I think in one of the forums, someone posted a logarithmic formula for the amount of time you stay between for the distance travelled.

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Old Nov 19 2008, 03:00 PM   #19
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

Well, that was supposed to be primarily from oxygen deprivation, which the suits were supposed to have prevented, and possibly from timing it so far. There was some disorientation after the jumps to the Red Star, but those were all from dragons/riders who DID NOT KNOW they had timed it - and their reaction was nowhere near Lessa's in DF, who had not traveled back anywhere near as far as they did.
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Old Nov 19 2008, 08:12 PM   #20
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What she said
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Old Nov 20 2008, 09:55 AM   #21
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

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Well, that was supposed to be primarily from oxygen deprivation, which the suits were supposed to have prevented, and possibly from timing it so far. There was some disorientation after the jumps to the Red Star, but those were all from dragons/riders who DID NOT KNOW they had timed it - and their reaction was nowhere near Lessa's in DF, who had not traveled back anywhere near as far as they did.
Given the intracacies of BETWEEN, I'm not sure we could say that a spacesuit would help with O2 deprivation. (I'm also not saying that it definitively would not help with O2 deprivation.)

But Between is a weird place that doesn't even follow the rules of a space-like vacuum.

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Old Nov 20 2008, 05:34 PM   #22
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

But ... if it is dimensionally nul, there wouldn't be any space for space.
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Old Nov 20 2008, 08:58 PM   #23
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

But as I pointed out, there was more of an effect with Lessa timing it 400 Turns without a suit, than with anyone going to the Red Star - timing it thousands of Turns or not.
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Old Nov 29 2008, 06:15 PM   #24
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And, P'ter, why would a draogon need a door? A dragon can teleport anywhere that's big enough to hold his/her body, right?
And why would they need to hold their breath? Give them some oxygen cylinders to chew on instead of firestone.
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Old Nov 29 2008, 06:17 PM   #25
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

Er, why does my post say "Titanium on Pern" whereas everyone else's says "Possibilities of draconic space research"? I've been teleported into a different thread. I'm disorientated...
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Old Nov 29 2008, 07:05 PM   #26
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

And you being our resident astronomer. Poor StevenB.
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Old Dec 2 2008, 01:48 PM   #27
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

It's ok Jube. I seem to have returned to the normal thread now.

P.S. Don't forget Kath. She's a resident astronomer as well; and more up to date than me, since I stopped doing research and moved to the engineering side of the force.
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Old Dec 2 2008, 04:57 PM   #28
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

Aha, he admits it... he's part of the force
Well, I'm glad he's with us

Uhm... the mentioning of Titanium will be my fault likely, the post with that text is obviously cut and pasted from the thread with that name in this subforum. Although I can't remember doing it, so maybe some other staff member did. Seems alright though.
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Old Dec 3 2008, 11:01 AM   #29
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

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And why would they need to hold their breath? Give them some oxygen cylinders to chew on instead of firestone.
And then watch them go splodey-boom when they accidently combine a little firestone with oxygen tanks.
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Old Dec 3 2008, 05:00 PM   #30
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Default Re: Possibilities of draconic space research

Wouldn't need firestone: a little oil or grease would do it!
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Old Dec 23 2008, 12:49 AM   #31
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I thought they were limited to around fifteen minutes?
That what All the Wyers of Pern says,

Between 12-15 minutes of useable time, with a very long time to get their breath back after that, LOL.

They could use the Yoko as a base of operations?

As for timing it, some of the dragon/rider pairs were younger ones who have never been off Pern. Or done much timing for it hard on both dragon and rider. For with out good time ablity you would want to try timing with out an OK.
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