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Old 08-26-2016, 02:23 PM   #5
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Berkeley, CA
Default Re: Hyperdense Shielding?

Originally Posted by Tallor View Post
Packed sand does a decent job of stopping radiation. Bricks and concrete are better. Steel is better still, and lead is typically considered the best.
Depends what type of radiation you're stopping. Lead is good against moderate energy ionizing radiation, including gamma rays, but it's cruddy against neutrons and cosmic rays.
Originally Posted by Tallor View Post
But lead isn't really the most dense.
Density helps with thickness, but in terms of weight what matters for shielding is how the electron shells are set up, so mostly you just want higher atomic number.
Originally Posted by Tallor View Post
This got me thinking--what about TL11 "hyperdense" materials? Perhaps cheaply producing osmium or some other ultra-dense material could produce even thinner shielding for the same mass!
All depends on what 'hyperdense' actually is. It's not really all that dense (based on its performance, under 10^2g/cc; white dwarf material is upwards of 10^6g/cc, neutron star material upwards of 10^12) and it's not clear why you'd want compressed matter anyway, either one of things would explode violently if taken into an area of low pressure, such as a planet.
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