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In My Traveller Universe Detail what parts of Traveller you do (or don't) use in your campaign.

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  #341  
Old October 7th, 2018, 05:26 PM
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Originally Posted by kilemall View Post
Your drivetech is up to you and the needs of your world.

I was more suggesting a form factor that fits with the 'vibe' I get from your world- interface craft that is interchangable whether atmo or not and therefore mass-produced, tailsitter cause again no gravitics, 70%+ fuel and engines and little relative cargo.

And don't forget the most important part- limits the landing party to just a few people and just a small vehicle or a few tools/weapons- because space horror needs underequipped adventurers.

Hmm, rethinking this, I'm thinking maybe you have an extra cargo deck in-between the fuel tanks and the engines. Wider base, one 'story' taller, ramp comes out and allows rapid rough field loading/unloading without specialized gantries/cranes or lugging down ladders/winches. That should allow for a mini-ATV in the 5-6 ton range, or aerocycles and a base camp.
10 ton ship = 6-7 tons fuel and engine, 3-4 tons for crew and cargo. I'll have to whip up Traveller/CE stats for "liberty ship" nuclear-lightbulb engines, which are far more efficient than chemical ones, but still require reaction mass.

http://www.projectrho.com/public_htm...hp#libertyship

https://www.nextbigfuture.com/2007/0...n-liberty.html
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  #342  
Old October 7th, 2018, 05:30 PM
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Originally Posted by atpollard View Post
For what little it might be worth ...

I just read a cost analysis that suggested that there would never be an economic case for a space elevator on Earth. A space elevator requires materials and technology that does not exist to build something that may reduce the cost to orbit to $25 per pound. The SpaceX BFR uses existing materials and proven technology to reduce the cost to orbit to $35 per pound. Those same super materials needed to build a space elevator would also allow the construction of a better Rocket.

The Space Elevator may have a high “cool factor” but will probably never be the more economical choice.
Hmmm... So, with the closed-cycle "liberty ship" rocket I've linked to below, we'll never need beanstalks?
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  #343  
Old October 7th, 2018, 10:32 PM
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Originally Posted by atpollard View Post
The Space Elevator may have a high “cool factor” but will probably never be the more economical choice.
A drop of $10/lb is huge (add in a few 'u's in there). That's a $20,000 savings on a ton. Bulk hauling works on margins far smaller than that. It would enable the profitable shifting of goods that were not previously economical to ship to orbit.

While I have certain doubts if the elevator is actually possible from an engineering point of view, if they were possible and the actual cost of operation (including things like maintenance and lifecycle of the elevator) really allows it to be $10/lb cheaper, the hurdle would be to prove the concept. Once it was proven, elevators would pop up in all kinds of places on Earth and rocketry would dwindle in hauling applications.

Edit: Designs like the Sea Dragon might be a bigger hurdle vs. the Space Elevator
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  #344  
Old October 8th, 2018, 05:13 AM
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Originally Posted by atpollard View Post
For what little it might be worth ...

I just read a cost analysis that suggested that there would never be an economic case for a space elevator on Earth. A space elevator requires materials and technology that does not exist to build something that may reduce the cost to orbit to $25 per pound. The SpaceX BFR uses existing materials and proven technology to reduce the cost to orbit to $35 per pound. Those same super materials needed to build a space elevator would also allow the construction of a better Rocket.

The Space Elevator may have a high “cool factor” but will probably never be the more economical choice.
That's based on our current technology and understanding of what is possible. If nothing else, human history has scattered all over the place (concentrated most recently of course) incidents of technology being developed that appeared or seemed impossible or at the least just implausible only a generation before. So that assessment is likely right for a TL6-8 society isolated from a mainstream galactic civilisation, but may not be the case in 50-100 years from now.

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Originally Posted by wellis View Post
Hmm since Hard Space doesn't have cheap gravitics to abuse, what are some ways one can make it easier to get payloads up to space using it, for like freight or items and such?

Of course, I figure in the future, containers may get lighter due to more advanced materials science?

Like if you're a standard private small free trader crew, what might be the best option here?

In fact, do you think here most adventure player character crews would be more working for small companies than fully being on their own in this setting?
If it's costly to put things into orbit then the question is would it be cheaper to make them up there? Why lift what you can build?

Otherwise I second Aramis' list, with a bent towards skyhooks as a cheaper way into orbit.
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  #345  
Old October 8th, 2018, 09:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Ulsyus View Post
That's based on our current technology and understanding of what is possible. If nothing else, human history has scattered all over the place (concentrated most recently of course) incidents of technology being developed that appeared or seemed impossible or at the least just implausible only a generation before. So that assessment is likely right for a TL6-8 society isolated from a mainstream galactic civilisation, but may not be the case in 50-100 years from now.
Granted. However the basic point is that with economy of scale and a high rate of utilization, a reusable rocket has the potential to approach the cost of energy to lift mass to orbit. Any system that proposes to lift mass to orbit for less than the cost of energy has moved from "Unobtanium" to "Handwavium". Beanstalks may achieve parity with Reusable rockets if the Galactic Civilization discovers "Unobtanium" to build it with, however one could then also build "Unobtanium" Rockets that were just as efficient.

Last edited by atpollard; October 8th, 2018 at 10:30 AM..
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  #346  
Old October 8th, 2018, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Golan2072 View Post
Hmmm... So, with the closed-cycle "liberty ship" rocket I've linked to below, we'll never need beanstalks?

It's not a question of "need". It's a question of whether they'll be cost effective or not. I've read the same analyses atpollard has and, IMHO, the economic questions are well founded. It's not just being able to build a beanstalk. It's a question of whether an operating beanstalk can earn enough to pay for it's construction and maintenance. Technology is this situation isn't going to be a magic wand. That is, there isn't going to be a tech advance or breakthrough which lessens or removes that economics question. Let me try to explain.

There's a phrase in English you may have heard; "A rising tide lifts all boats". Technology works the same way in that an advance in technology is never used for a single purpose. Advances and breakthroughs in technology "lift all boats". An advance in materials, for example, which helps a beanstalk will also help alternatives to a beanstalk. This means a beanstalk will never the only solution and, as I'll explain, will always be the most expensive one.

Building a beanstalk for Earth means you're building a structure whose center of mass is roughly 36,000 km "above" the planet's surface. That's just for the center of mass, mind you. Depending on the mass of counterweight, the beanstalk could extend thousands of more kilometers past geosynch. The result is a structure whose size is almost inconceivably large. Not only is it that large, you can't use it until it is finished. It's not a road net, rail net, or pipeline where short completed sections can be "working" and "earning" before the entire system is completed. Instead it's a bridge which you can't use until it's completed.

This issue of size means building a beanstalk for a smaller planet or moon is both cheaper and easier. A beanstalk for Mars, Luna, Titan, and so forth doesn't need to be 36,000+ km long. Despite being smaller and thus cheaper, a beanstalk on Mars, Luna, Titan, etc. would have far less earning potential than a beanstalk on Earth. Once again, the money doesn't balance.

Summing up:
  • - Any tech advance which helps a beanstalk also helps the alternatives.
  • - No matter what, a beanstalk has to pay it's way.

Beanstalks are cool. They're a quick way to impress that We're not in Kansas anymore feeling on the players. Sadly, they don't make much sense even on a superficial level.
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  #347  
Old October 14th, 2018, 02:16 PM
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Thanks to differences in tech here, are there certain jobs/roles and genre conventions in Traveller that would be harder to do, or be non-existent, in Hard Space?
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  #348  
Old October 15th, 2018, 12:25 PM
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Thanks to differences in tech here, are there certain jobs/roles and genre conventions in Traveller that would be harder to do, or be non-existent, in Hard Space?
For one, no grav vehicles; cities will resemble modern cities, plus arcologies, rather than the "high-sf" genre-convention multi-level complexes ala The Fifth Element and Mass Effect (or even Bladerunner) built for grav cars.
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Old October 15th, 2018, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Golan2072 View Post
For one, no grav vehicles; cities will resemble modern cities, plus arcologies, rather than the "high-sf" genre-convention multi-level complexes ala The Fifth Element and Mass Effect (or even Bladerunner) built for grav cars.
Stuff like air-taxis/vehicles for the rich would be more like this?:
https://www.cnet.com/news/how-uber-i...CAD-03-10aaj8j
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  #350  
Old October 20th, 2018, 06:07 AM
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Originally Posted by wellis View Post
Stuff like air-taxis/vehicles for the rich would be more like this?:
https://www.cnet.com/news/how-uber-i...CAD-03-10aaj8j
Definitely so!
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