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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 5:48 pm 
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dragoner wrote:
It still needs to land on ships and floating islands, no?

Not really, the floating cities have protected internal harbours. The only place
it would perhaps make sense to land a seaplane would be on the colony's floa-
ting spaceport, but even there it can just as well be handled as a "flying boat"
and use the internal harbour instead. But this is also a thing of the colonists'
mentality, from their point of view it is a watercraft able to fly, not an aircraft
able to operate on the water - the "baseline" of their thought are watercraft,
both surface and subsurface.

Edit.:
By the way, the general design of one of the floating cities is like this:


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 7:18 am 
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Hydrogen is not a promising aviation fuel. It takes up a lot of space, which is a problem inside a streamlined fuselage. Moreover, even though it has good energy-to-mass itself, you need heavy pressure vessels to store it as a compressed gas, or heavy insulation to store it as a cryogenic liquid.

Organic liquids such as oils and alcohols are a lot more suitable for aviation, and seem likely to rule the roost as long as we continue to use combustion engines or even if we switch to fuel cells. High tech batteries and lightweight electric motors might displace them, and hydrogen might come in as an aviation fuel if fusion generators turn out to be very light. But aero engines that burn hydrogen with air don't sound very plausible.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 10:36 am 
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Yes, I am aware of the problem, and in this setting the hydrogen engines
will be replaced by biofuel engines which run on fuel produced by algae as
soon as the colony has grown to the point where it can establish that in-
dustry. Unfortunately the seaplane is urgently needed during the early pha-
se of the colonization project, as scout plane and long range transport for
exploration teams, and without any local chemical industry the hydrogen is
the only comparably inexpensive and locally available fuel I could think of.

Looking for a "reality check" in the form of a big real world aircraft with hy-
drogen engines, I found the Tupolev 155:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tupolev_Tu-155

It obviously worked well enough with the technology of the 1980s, so the
futuristic technology of the setting should have no serious problems with
hydrogen engines for a seaplane, at least as an intermediate solution until
a better fuel becomes locally available.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 11:31 am 
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Where there are people, there must be food, and where there is food you can make ethanol. It's not as good as liquid hydrocarbons, but it is miles better than hydrogen.

Is this a Traveller setting?

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 11:50 am 
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Agemegos wrote:
Where there are people, there must be food, and where there is food you can make ethanol. It's not as good as liquid hydrocarbons, but it is miles better than hydrogen.

Quite true, but this colony has little (if any) food to spare, the aquaculture
is not yet working well, because the various species introduced from Earth
and from other colonies are still adapting to their new environment. And sin-
ce the colony's watercraft use hydrogen fuel cells, it seemed convenient to
outfit all other vehicles with hydrogen engines, too.
Quote:
Is this a Traveller setting?

No, the technology assumptions are very different from those of Traveller,
for example the FTL drive is a kind of hyperdrive, there is no gravitics tech-
nology, and biotechnology is far more important than in a usual Traveller set-
ting. The background is also very different, with a short history and only 34
colonies comparatively close to an Earth of 2217 AD. The focus of the setting
is the water world Thalassa, ca. 71 light years from Earth and 3 years after
the first team established the first outpost, at the beginning of the actual co-
lonization project.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:08 pm 
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rust wrote:
Looking for a "reality check" in the form of a big real world aircraft with hy-
drogen engines, I found the Tupolev 155:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tupolev_Tu-155

It obviously worked well enough with the technology of the 1980s

Well, it worked well enough for an experimental aircraft to fly 100 test flights, but not well enough to follow up. In short, it didn't work well enough.

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My SFRPG setting, Flat Black

© My posts to this board are copyright under the Berne Convention. They may be quoted on the board with appropriate attribution. They may not be reproduced beyond the board except with explicit permission from me.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:10 pm 
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rust wrote:
Agemegos wrote:
Is this a Traveller setting?

No, the technology assumptions are very different from those of Traveller

Then it is a pity that there isn't a "Gearheads' Corner" in "Other RPGs".

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My SFRPG setting, Flat Black

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 10:11 pm 
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Agemegos wrote:
it is a pity that there isn't a "Gearheads' Corner" in "Other RPGs".

And now there is, and this is it!

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My SFRPG setting, Flat Black

© My posts to this board are copyright under the Berne Convention. They may be quoted on the board with appropriate attribution. They may not be reproduced beyond the board except with explicit permission from me.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 10:25 pm 
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rust wrote:
Agemegos wrote:
Where there are people, there must be food, and where there is food you can make ethanol. It's not as good as liquid hydrocarbons, but it is miles better than hydrogen.

Quite true, but this colony has little (if any) food to spare, the aquaculture
is not yet working well, because the various species introduced from Earth
and from other colonies are still adapting to their new environment. And sin-
ce the colony's watercraft use hydrogen fuel cells, it seemed convenient to
outfit all other vehicles with hydrogen engines, too.


Well, if you're happy and your players are convinced everything's fine.

But if you were looking for a fuel with better energy density and lower containment overheads, I would suggest methane from fermented sewage or methanol from fermented agricultural waste. I seem to remember that you have advanced biotech in this setting, so perhaps even fermenting ethanol from cellulosic waste is compellingly plausible.

_________________
— Brett Evill

My SFRPG setting, Flat Black

© My posts to this board are copyright under the Berne Convention. They may be quoted on the board with appropriate attribution. They may not be reproduced beyond the board except with explicit permission from me.


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