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Old 08-25-2015, 10:52 PM   #22
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Eindhoven, the Netherlands
Default Re: [Spaceships] Heat Signature, Cloaking Device, and Stealth Hull

Originally Posted by safisher View Post
Everyone now screaming that "there is no stealth in space" assumes that everything works in the far future as we now understand it. Fine. But that's probably not very realistic.
Of course we're assuming things will work the way we understand them. Do you expect us to base our assumptions off of what we don't understand? You're talking about known unknowns, and unknown unknowns, and that's certainly true... but it's equally true that nothing will happen that directly invalidates what we know to be true. For example:

And while others are going to jump on this and rail about my poor understanding of science, remember that warp drives are now no longer strictly a superscience consideration, and recent tests in fusion power and may make reactionless powered spacecraft possible in the near term.
These are not things that violate our understanding of science, except probably the "reactionless drive" you're talking about, and I really wouldn't hold my breath on that. in fact, if you went back into the 1920s and presented these facts to people then, none of them would be surprised. All of them were already predicted, including your warp drive (the question of bending space has never been whether physics would allow it, but if it was practical... and that's still looking unlikely)

But "stealth in space" is not one of those things. But when we say "Stealth in space is impossible," of course we're slapping an unspoken asterisk of "Unless something happens that we don't know about." What if ships can float around in a lower dimension that makes them invisible to EM emissions? What if they can "translate into dark matter?" What if they can use advanced telepathy to paint their starship in "Ignore me!" telepathy-paint that makes people forget they ever saw it? If we discover something like this, then yeah, sure, stealth in space becomes possible, which is not something GURPS ignores (it's got cloaking devices right there in Spaceships). But until that's discovered:

Stealth in space is impossible*
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