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Thread: Dyson Sphere

  1. #1
    Warsai
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    Dyson Sphere

    A Dyson Sphere is a hypothetical structure that was first theorized by Freeman Dyson, a physicist in the '50's. The sphere would cover the entire surface of a star allowing all the star's energy to be used. Civilizations could be build on the sphere and population wouldn't be a problem for an incredibly long time, since stars like our sun our millions of times larger than Earth. This idea has been used a lot in science fiction, but it is not very feasible since it would require building an enormous structure. A better version of the Dyson sphere, called the Dyson swarm would actually consist of a large number of independent solar collectors that would harness all the sun's energy. Each of the collectors could be different in size and design and it would be possible to build habitats on the solar collectors for humans to live in. Since the collectors are independent of each other, one could still harness the sun's energy while building the entire swarm. There are some drawbacks, though. In a Dyson swarm, some of the collectors would be in the shadow of other collectors, which would reduce the efficiency of the swarm, but not by a large factor.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Goober
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    Re: Dyson Sphere

    Anyone know about any books that detail dyson sphere theory and information about swarms?

    Can't seem to find any and I'm interested in the subject. Any help would be appreciated.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Re: Dyson Sphere

    The Larry Niven Science Fiction novel Ringworld considers an interesting alternative to a Dyson sphere: a literal ring of habitable land surrounding a star (picture a ribbon stood on end and encircling a candle, and you've got the idea). Pretty interesting concept, really.

  4. #4
    Goober
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    Re: Dyson Sphere

    Had a look on amazon for the ringworld series, looks interesting I may buy the lot. Thanks

  5. #5
    Scrat
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    Re: Dyson Sphere

    The Ringworld series is very interesting. I read it along ago more than once.

    Another book was called "Come And See", this is not about a Dyson sphere around a solar system. It's about one around the whole galaxy. Talk about over achievers.

    I can't remember the author.

  6. #6
    anomaly
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    Re: Dyson Sphere

    My theory is that we should try to invent some way to keep the Earth inhabitable instead of trying to figure out how to bail.

  7. #7
    Scrat
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    Re: Dyson Sphere

    Such things as this is just fantasy now. To build the ring alone around the sun would require the mass of almost all of the planets combined. Maybe when we can butcher Jupiter like a side of beef we can do it.

    As for saving the earth now well, I think nature has a way of saving herself. We have seen it in the past. It's called extinction.

  8. #8
    anomaly
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    Re: Dyson Sphere

    Good point. If the Earth doesn't want us here anymore it will shrug us off like fleas...but the point remains. I am indignant that we think we have the right to invade the rest of space when we can't take care of our current environment. Like trying to run before we've learned to walk.

  9. #9
    Scrat
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    Re: Dyson Sphere

    Part of our problem is our activities and part is our population. If we can get the population under control and learn to utilize the planets resources better things will improve.

    One of the options we should take advantage of is getting people off of this world to other places. We have the technology to build large cities in space, not the will. Finding other worlds is another matter altogether. The nearest sun in our neighborhood is Alpha Centauri, 40 years travel at the speed of light. Finding another world is not an option in the near future.

    We really should stop treating the Earth like we have a spare in the trunk.

  10. #10
    anomaly
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    Re: Dyson Sphere

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    I figured overpopulation would come up pretty fast. I see this like the poverty problem, if there was better distribution there would be no problem. Who really needs a 20 acre mansion? We could also put all this thinking into creating more efficient homes that don't rely on hydro and gas (can you tell I just got my utilities bill?) I bet there is a number of things we could work on that would reduce the population problem and poverty at the same time.

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