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Imperial Interstellar Scout Service Details of the worlds of the Imperium (and beyond).

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  #1  
Old July 30th, 2020, 07:00 PM
BwapTED BwapTED is offline
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Default comet colonies

Has anybody done much with inhabited comets in Traveller?

I don't recall seeing any in the books I own, but there is a metric tonne of stuff I have never even seen.


What TL do you think would be necessary to settle on (or inside) a comet?
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Old July 30th, 2020, 09:49 PM
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Default Cometary commentary

I would think that Fusion power (TL8+) and a large enough comet would be all that was needed. The comet would provide sufficient water for all the colony's energy and life support needs, assuming the colony was not allowed to grow so large as to outstrip the comet's resources. The real question, I would think, would be what would the purpose of the colony be? There would probably be little in the way of mineral resources there, or other resources (besides water) to exploit. If the 'colony' were instead a research station or some other kind of base (military, refueling, etc.) then it would make sense. But to just have it be a place for a civilization to dwell, I don't think it would be very useful except in the most dire of circumstances, i.e. a last resort if nothing else is available.
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Old July 31st, 2020, 02:41 AM
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Thanks for the feedback..
I think I will do a scientific station.

Last edited by BwapTED; July 31st, 2020 at 02:54 AM..
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Old July 31st, 2020, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by BwapTED View Post
Thanks for the feedback..
I think I will do a scientific station.
Plus the whole "and don't forget we're plunging in the Sun sometime in the future" part. Why not better camp on a rock in the asteroid belt.

That said, there's someone, flykiller perhaps? who spends a lot of time in the Oort cloud, so he may have some insight for you.
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Old July 31st, 2020, 10:51 AM
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TL8, fusion, cold-sleep, but no gravitics...

A near pass of a long-period comet gets exploited by the inner-system homeworld: they install a moth-balled base with the capability for rotational 'gravity', a fusion plant, provisions, and science equipment to be used by the team, who will travel in cryoberths and be awakened when the comet reaches apoapsis in the Oort cloud. The cryoberths are powered by an independent RTG.

The research team (large enough to absorb attrition from long-term cryosleep) are all, effectively, time travellers, hibernating for hundreds (thousands?) of years from the inner system to the Oort cloud, and then back.

Has their civilization gained FTL travel while they slept, and the mission forgotten? Has their civilization collapsed, to be replaced by another one? What were they searching for out there? What did they find?
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Old July 31st, 2020, 11:40 AM
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Originally Posted by wbuthod View Post
TL8, fusion, cold-sleep, but no gravitics...

A near pass of a long-period comet gets exploited by the inner-system homeworld: they install a moth-balled base with the capability for rotational 'gravity', a fusion plant, provisions, and science equipment to be used by the team, who will travel in cryoberths and be awakened when the comet reaches apoapsis in the Oort cloud. The cryoberths are powered by an independent RTG.

The research team (large enough to absorb attrition from long-term cryosleep) are all, effectively, time travellers, hibernating for hundreds (thousands?) of years from the inner system to the Oort cloud, and then back.

Has their civilization gained FTL travel while they slept, and the mission forgotten? Has their civilization collapsed, to be replaced by another one? What were they searching for out there? What did they find?

Great stuff!


I've saved my other notes for a more conventional asteroid/planetoid complex.
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Old August 1st, 2020, 10:31 AM
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The research team (large enough to absorb attrition from long-term cryosleep) are all, effectively, time travellers, hibernating for hundreds (thousands?) of years from the inner system to the Oort cloud, and then back.
To what end? What are they doing when they wake up? And is the data really worth the impact on the lives of the crew in contrast to long term robotic missions? Because this crew is effectively "dead" to everyone but themselves.

(Assuming they don't go mad from isolation etc and murder each other when they wake up thousands of years later.)
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Old August 1st, 2020, 01:12 PM
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"Heart of the Comet", by Benford and Brin, might have some useful insights. In this case, the mission was to steer the comet to a near-Earth parking orbit for exploitation. As is the way of these things, the mission changed...

The same book also briefly discusses the idea of vacc suit heraldry.
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Old August 1st, 2020, 01:20 PM
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The same book also briefly discusses the idea of vacc suit heraldry.
Less like Heraldry more like Gang Tags...Which I suppose is basically where Heraldry came from - those Norman gang leaders have a lot to answer for!
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Old August 1st, 2020, 01:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whartung View Post
Plus the whole "and don't forget we're plunging in the Sun sometime in the future" part. Why not better camp on a rock in the asteroid belt.

That said, there's someone, flykiller perhaps? who spends a lot of time in the Oort cloud, so he may have some insight for you.
If you're at tech 9+ then you could install an M-Drive and maneuver the comet into a more or less circular orbit outside the snow line of a solar system (so it isn't sublimated by the star) to be used for refueling. I could imagine a whole industry of belters arising that make a living doing this in systems that do not have other easily available sources of fuel, i.e. no Gas Giants, Oceans, or advanced starports. When the comet gets close to being used up it's time to go capture another one.
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Last edited by Madmax; August 1st, 2020 at 04:11 PM.. Reason: oops, wrong word
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