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Old 09-24-2018, 12:29 AM   #231
tshiggins
 
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Default Re: [ATE] Farming example

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Originally Posted by (E) View Post
Cloud cities early thoughts
The stability of the climate is a problem for plants, the plants from Earth that can handle that climatic stability (and the increased pathogens associated with it) are generally tropical species, but they might find it a bit cool at higher altitudes. So higher altitude tropical crops or low altitude tropical crops that can handle shade.
The overlap between these species and New York availability is an issue. (Potatoes, pineapples so far)
Tomatoes require a day night cycle so they are out.
Perhaps larger amounts of chemicals will be required.

False bananas and bananas might do well but are hard to justify.

Space limitations would seem to indicate a gardened, layered approach, mixed cropping at the least.

Rain plus poor soil depth means nitrogen deficiency is going to be a critical issue.

Bamboo looks too useful to pass up.

I could see a widely spaced group of tree trunks supporting vines on frames in the gaps.

Brassica do well under continuous light.
Potatoes kept in darkness 6 hours of so a day should work, maybe with poultry manure to provide nitrogen.

Anyway I'll move this to the front of the queue.
I certainly appreciate it. I'm almost certain that an unusually large percentage of the available calories and proteins will come from deliberate management of floating forests, one way or another, with supplemental vitamins (as well as hydrocarbons) from the vegetation mats (which I think of as similar to seaweed) and algae.

Animal proteins for most people will exclusively come from poultry and insects -- some of the insects quite large, but nearly impossible to domesticate.

I know the utter absence of native grasses is pretty rough, and poses the single largest challenge. There are no grains not imported through New York.

That said, one of the reasons they wait so long to build the platforms is because they know they need a New York that's a center of world trade, for all sorts of reasons, or it doesn't justify the costs.

By the time the hideously expensive arkenstone platforms get built, they've made sure New York has everything, and I mean everything.
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Old 09-27-2018, 06:22 PM   #232
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Default Re: [ATE] Farming example

Nieuw Haarlem, cloud city (provisional)
Comparative Benefits

- Easier to move livestock in a lower tech city
- Gardening knowledge more common
- Fountain
- Knowledge of whaling

The majority of food production is from container based gardens, plant pots and relatively free draining nooks and crannies. The limiting factors are the few species that are available. Pathogen buildup is managed through the use of containers to grow plants and composting.

Depending on the bounty from the fountain there may be a couple of methods of harvesting resources. Nets might be set from the platform itself, alternately nets may be attached to other buoyant structures and be used to dredge. If tjis is a cost effective use of time and resources a finer net could be used to harvest biomass for compost, animal and human food.

Sperm oil plus benzene might make a functional diesel fuel, if an animal analogous to the sperm whale exists.

Main crop
Potatoes on ropes, potatoes grown in sacks hung from the floating platforms, each 2.5 inch hemp type rope would produce about 40-50 lbs of potatoes every two months. Provided they are shaded with damp cloth (evaporation to mimic night time temperatures) for 6 hours or so a day. Not sure on the details of the lighting so let's say 3 ropes for each 2 yards of perimeter. Call it 450 yards. 675 ropes equals about 27000lbs per crop up to 6 crops a year. (Optimistic but plausible numbers, slight improvement if sweet potatoes used, requires a fair amount of rope and sacks/baskets) the limiting factor is soil health, with only soil rotation 1000lbs would be required per plant. While some of this can be used for gardens, composting, chemicals, heating or fresh harvesting is required to make it feasible.

Gardens
Optimistically something like 10m2 to provide each person's fresh vegetables, maybe 15m2 if space is available for experimentation.

Continuous Light tolerant plants
*indicates no improvement in yield with continuous lighting
Sunflower*
Onions and alliums
Chickpeas
Radishes
Brassica
Tea

Switches
- Grafting fruit onto "native" trees
- disease, could go either way here, the local microbes may dominate and reduce the pathogens that effect Earth based food crops or the stable climate may result in an overwhelming level of plant pathogens.

I've just posted this to make sure I'm on the right track.
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Old 09-28-2018, 01:44 PM   #233
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Default Re: [ATE] Farming example

Quote:

I've just posted this to make sure I'm on the right track.
This is really good, and there is no "wrong track," because I don't know enough. I hadn't thought of grafting fruits to the floating trees, but I like that idea a lot.

I wanted to make everything biologically compatible with the real world; this reality is a magical filter/mixer for the Decanic forces that define the material universe, after all.

Plant pathogens are a quandary, though, and something I hadn't even considered. I do know the vegetation in the temperate maritime rainforests of the Pacific Northwest are remarkably resistant to everything, which is why I used them as my main source of inspiration for vegetation at zero-level.

It would make sense that the limited temperature variations in that region would be why that's so.
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Old 10-04-2018, 08:56 PM   #234
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Default Re: [ATE] Farming example

Nieuw Haarlem
Comparative Benefits
-Easier to move livestock in a lower tech city
-Gardening knowledge more common
-Fountain
-Knowledge of whaling

While the main crop provides most of the raw calories most other food production is from container based gardens, plant pots and relatively free draining nooks and crannies. The limiting factor is the few species that flourish under continual light. Pathogen buildup is managed through the use of containers to grow plants and composting.
Working on the assumption that the bounty from the fountain provides a large amount of raw material. Nets are both set in stable locations and trawled through the rich currents rising from the depths.

Sperm oil plus benzene might make a functional diesel fuel, if an animal analogous to the sperm whale exists.

Main crop

Potatoes on ropes, potatoes grown in sacks hung from the floating platforms, each 2.5 inch hemp type rope would produce about 40-50 lbs of potatoes every two months. Provided they are shaded with damp cloth (evaporation to mimic night time temperatures) for 6 hours or so a day. Not sure on the details of the lighting so let's say 3 ropes for each 2 yards of perimeter. Call it 450 yards. 675 ropes equals about 27000 lbs per crop up to 6 crops a year. (Optimistic but plausible numbers, slight improvement if sweet potatoes used, requires a fair amount of rope and sacks/baskets) the limiting factor is soil health, with only soil rotation 1000 lbs would be required per plant. While some of this can be used for gardens, composting, chemicals, heating or fresh harvesting is required to make it feasible, as there is a thermal bringing up fresh material from the depths they use that to provide a steady source of fresh compost and soil.

Gardens
Optimistically something like 10m2 to provide each person's fresh vegetables, maybe 15m2 if space is available for experimentation.

Continuous Light tolerant plants
*indicates no improvement in yield with continuous lighting
Sunflower*
Onions and alliums
Chickpeas
Radishes
Brassica
Tea

A wider range is possible if day/night temperature changes can be mimicked, possibly by raising and lowering the altitude.

Orchard communities

If grafting is possible an orchard system is possible. Alternately fruit trees may be planted on floating native trees. Mimicking seasons will be critical in most cases, to do this there are a couple of possible approaches.
- Moving the grafted “root stock” to shelters to cool and shade the trees.
- Moving the trees to warmer or cooler parts of the environment.
A combination of the above is used near Nieuw Haarlem, the fountain provides warm conditions to mimic spring and summer while winter conditions are simulated in a shed or tent. If transportation is available the orchards may be moved to the platform for harvest.

Hunter gatherers
There are two broad categories
High quality, these are the equivalent of the hunters they use generally better equipment to collect the more valuable resources that are available from the ecosystem. Animals from higher up in the ecosystem as well as resources from more distant or dangerous areas. Surplus meat from hunting would be fed to animals for storage as refrigeration is unlikely. Each pound of pork produced would take 24 lbs of food.

Low quality Low risk high bulk resources are also useful. This category may include set nets to collect biomass for animal food and compost. Any of this bulk material that wasn't for direct consumption would require processing to increase the density. Large nets full of organic matter would be emptied into grinders to release any lighter gases, the resulting slurry would make up a percentage (10%?) of the diet for any animals present.

Animals
Its assumed that the residents have an easier time getting animals through their New York than the residents of the higher tech platforms.
Poultry, a simulated night cycle would be required to get chickens to lay. About 3 or 4 chickens supported by the food waste per person.
Pigs, at this TL pigs have not yet been bred to have low fat content. This may be a good source of biodiesel, maybe a gallon per animal slaughtered. They probably don't have the resources to fully process this so the fuel produced is likely mixed with existing supplies.

Belt driven machinery
A steady up draft if one exists might allow for wind power. Otherwise a central engine could be used to provide power.

New Wollaston

The improvement in TL between New Wollaston and Nieuw Haarlem as well as the absence of a fountain of life makes a hydroponic system more appropriate. Pneumatic tools, If possible they would grow crops under glass if so about 55m2 of crop space will support a person. In the open air the yield will be a bit smaller 95m2 per person, though frames would be required to support blackout material to imitate night time conditions. The crop mix to maximize yield from a small space is listed here.

Nieuw Amsterdam
Aeroponics is a viable option at TL8, this has a couple of benefits for the situation here, less weight and far better disease control. Plastic greenhouses (polyhouses) and aeroponics would mean a relatively complete diet is possible at 40m2 per person. Algae farming reduces this space by 4m2, aquaculture reduces this by 3m2, if both are on place poultry is also supported. (Though the chicken will likely taste “fishy”) reduce space by another 2m2.
A small amount of “wild game” is required to complete the diet.

As with New Wollaston pneumatic tools are likely. If they can reliably manage temperature for manufacturing they will be able to produce nylon from the benzene present in the native algae. Solar water heating systems provide hot and warm water primarily for industrial processes. The solar heaters are likely to be placed along the sparks of the structure. While gathered firewood is required for cooking.

Bio-diesel
Clear plastic and TL 8 algae farming allows biodiesel to be produced. Careful temperature regulation should allow native and earth based algae varieties to be grown in adjacent environment. This assumes there is a laboratory available to work out the details. Assuming some synergy from light producing native algae 15g per m2 per day (one and a half gallons per m2 per year) seems possible if they have skilled biochemists. A drying system would also be required, a low micron mesh system could be used in the lower parts of the structure to do most of the work. Mechanically there would also be a drum type dryer and a press. It is unlikely the native algae could co-exist with terrestrial algae, the biofuel producing varieties are water based and the native algae would float. But a layer of luminous algae could be encouraged to grow on the transparent underside of the algae farms, improving the available energy. The result is a flat photobioreactor is efficient at greater thicknesses than one on earth. (75mm on Earth, 100mm here)
The waste material from a less efficient (2/3rds) system would also largely support aquaculture (tilapia), the rest of their food coming from insects supported by waste food. (Maybe 6 kgs of fish per m2 per year). This less efficient system uses fresh water rather than saline water.

Materials and manufacturing
Plastics, especially nylon are possible but clear, UV stable and strong plastic unlikely.
Polyhouses
Algae, carbon rich and warm water may allow for tank production of biodiesel if genetic engineering can splice in the bioluminescent code to an aquatic algae.
Bamboo is a likely addition and will be grown as a crop when it is required.
It is technically possible for carbon fiber to be made locally though a considerable investment in machinery would be required. But it may well be worth the effort.

With aeroponics and plastics it begins to become possible to have food and resource producing structures that are thin and light enough to be stretched between floating structures. They also might extend out from existing structures to catch as much light as possible.

Switch
Pathogen rich environment, if Earth based plant diseases thrive here reduce production by at least 75%. The exception would be the aeroponic polyhouses which would now be "clean" rooms with all the biological containment paraphenalia at every entrance and exit.

School holidays here so I'm a bit rushed, I figured I should attempt to get something up rather than spend too much time polishing it. Crunch will follow, but there should be enough numbers to get an idea
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Last edited by (E); 10-05-2018 at 09:21 PM.
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Old 10-05-2018, 08:38 PM   #235
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Default Re: [ATE] Farming example

This is brilliant.

I'm sitting in a bar in Denver on a rainy night, so I'll respond in detail, tomorrow.
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Old 10-06-2018, 05:35 PM   #236
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Default Re: [ATE] Farming example

When should we expect to see GURPS: Agriculture in Warehouse 23? (A somewhat serious question.)
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Old 10-06-2018, 07:24 PM   #237
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Default Re: [ATE] Farming example

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Originally Posted by Neophyte42 View Post
When should we expect to see GURPS: Agriculture in Warehouse 23? (A somewhat serious question.)
Well I had an abbreviated set of rules in draft form for a pyramid article. There was still a bit of work to do but a framework was there. Then pyramid went on hiatus so that got shelved.
At the moment I have a good modeling mechanic and reference data for about 30 of the 60 or so staple crops used in history. The same mechanic also covers things like animal production and non crop food production (gardens, hunting, generic farm production)
Research is plodding away steadily.
As to publication, all I can do is try to produce a solid draft and see if the powers that be are interested.
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Old 10-06-2018, 10:53 PM   #238
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Default Re: [ATE] Farming example

Quote:
Originally Posted by (E) View Post
Nieuw Haarlem
Comparative Benefits
-Easier to move livestock in a lower tech city
-Gardening knowledge more common
-Fountain
-Knowledge of whaling
This is pretty good. They can't get a lot of livestock out, yet, because there are two really expensive hotels right underneath the portal entrance. Still, they can slip the occasional dirigible through, in the wee hours of the morning, and take some young animals with them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by (E) View Post

(SNIP)

Nets are both set in stable locations and trawled through the rich currents rising from the depths.
I had already thought of floating nets, so that's pretty good.

Quote:
Originally Posted by (E) View Post
Sperm oil plus benzene might make a functional diesel fuel, if an animal analogous to the sperm whale exists.
Such a creature does exist. It doesn't have the same quantity of oil, since it has to fly rather than float in the sea, but there are a couple of creatures that qualify.

I need to be a bit careful, though. If I make the endless sky of the Orbital Realm of Jupiter resemble an endless sea, too much, then the Orbital Realm of Venus won't provide nearly as interesting a contrast.

Quote:
Originally Posted by (E) View Post

Main crop

Potatoes on ropes, potatoes grown in sacks hung from the floating platforms, each 2.5 inch hemp type rope would produce about 40-50 lbs of potatoes every two months. Provided they are shaded with damp cloth (evaporation to mimic night time temperatures) for 6 hours or so a day. Not sure on the details of the lighting so let's say 3 ropes for each 2 yards of perimeter.

(SNIP)

.
Well, the sun on a bright day gives off about 100,000 lux (lumens per square meter), so I'm gonna say at this altitude its about 60,000 lux, because of the sepia mist, but never gets much better than 70,000 the higher you go. It gets worse, deeper down.

This whole thing with potatoes in sacks on ropes fascinates me. Where does that come from?

I mean, it would work really well near Nieuw Haarlem, because the nutrient fall from the top of the cloud would soak into the hemp rope and the sacking, and help the potatoes grow a little better, I think.

Quote:
Originally Posted by (E) View Post
Gardens
Optimistically something like 10m2 to provide each person's fresh vegetables, maybe 15m2 if space is available for experimentation.

Continuous Light tolerant plants
*indicates no improvement in yield with continuous lighting
Sunflower*
Onions and alliums
Chickpeas
Radishes
Brassica
Tea

A wider range is possible if day/night temperature changes can be mimicked, possibly by raising and lowering the altitude.
It does get cooler at the higher altitudes, but the distances are far greater in the Orbital Realm, so mimicking the temperature shifts by raising and lowering really isn't practical.

EDIT: See discussion of orchards, further down!

Quote:
Originally Posted by (E) View Post
Orchard communities
If grafting is possible an orchard system is possible. Alternately fruit trees may be planted on floating native trees. Mimicking seasons will be critical in most cases, to do this there are a couple of possible approaches.
- Moving the grafted “root stock” to shelters to cool and shade the trees.
- Moving the trees to warmer or cooler parts of the environment.
A combination of the above is used near Nieuw Haarlem, the fountain provides warm conditions to mimic spring and summer while winter conditions are simulated in a shed or tent. If transportation is available the orchards may be moved to the platform for harvest.
The fountains are significantly warmer, and I could definitely see moving trees back and forth.

That might be a way to go -- grafted trees that bear fruits get moved to the edges of the fountain, and the orchard-keepers carefully cull the flotation bladders so it takes a few months for the trees to rise to the colder regions.

By the times the trees reach those altitudes, the harvest is ready and dirigibles take the ripe fruit down to the platform. They then return, and tow the trees out of the fountain.

The trees spend a couple of months in the cold heights, and then the orchard keepers cull enough floation bladders to drop them down slowly. By the time they reach zed-zed, it's time to prune them, anyway, so the orchard-keepers cut enough wood away to return them to neutral buoyancy.

Then, the dirigibles tow them back to the edge of the cloud fountain, and the whole thing starts again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by (E) View Post
Hunter gatherers
There are two broad categories

(SNIP)

Animals
Its assumed that the residents have an easier time getting animals through their New York than the residents of the higher tech platforms.
Poultry, a simulated night cycle would be required to get chickens to lay. About 3 or 4 chickens supported by the food waste per person.
Pigs, at this TL pigs have not yet been bred to have low fat content. This may be a good source of biodiesel, maybe a gallon per animal slaughtered. They probably don't have the resources to fully process this so the fuel produced is likely mixed with existing supplies.

Belt driven machinery
A steady up draft if one exists might allow for wind power. Otherwise a central engine could be used to provide power.

I like all of this. Biodiesel engines would be used for all of this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by (E) View Post
New Wollaston

The improvement in TL between New Wollaston and Nieuw Haarlem as well as the absence of a fountain of life makes a hydroponic system more appropriate.

(SNIP)
Very nice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by (E) View Post
Nieuw Amsterdam
Aeroponics is a viable option at TL8, this has a couple of benefits for the situation here, less weight and far better disease control.

(SNIP)

With aeroponics and plastics it begins to become possible to have food and resource producing structures that are thin and light enough to be stretched between floating structures. They also might extend out from existing structures to catch as much light as possible.
I like this, a lot, and it would give Nieuw Amsterdam a really different sensibility than the other places. Whereas the other locations use fibrous hawsers to lash together floating trees into platforms, Nieuw Amsterdam's floating tree platforms are floored with what looks like thick, clear mylar.

Quote:
Originally Posted by (E) View Post
Switch
Pathogen rich environment, if Earth based plant diseases thrive here reduce production by at least 75%. The exception would be the aeroponic polyhouses which would now be "clean" rooms with all the biological containment paraphenalia at every entrance and exit.
I'll turn this dial on, at least part-way, and here's why. It means Nieuw Amsterdam uses the sale of pesticides, fungicides and disease-resistant plants from the early 21st Century to help maintain its economic dominance of the region.

Quote:
Originally Posted by (E) View Post
School holidays here so I'm a bit rushed, I figured I should attempt to get something up rather than spend too much time polishing it. Crunch will follow, but there should be enough numbers to get an idea
This is really excellent, and gives me a number of adventure-seeds.

Thank you, very much!
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Last edited by tshiggins; 10-07-2018 at 09:24 AM.
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Old 10-07-2018, 03:27 AM   #239
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Default Re: [ATE] Farming example

Growing potatoes in sacks, I've seen this several places, Dame Whina Cooper making mention of it is the earliest I can recall coming across it.
https://www.herald.co.zw/when-potato...-in-sacks/amp/
It came to mind after I recently read about a charity providing ready made kits for local school kids that they could hang off walls. I've also grown tomatoes in a similar manner before, hanging them off the washing line.

Other things that I forgot to mention.
- the plastic polyhouses would be double glazed to maintain a warm growing environment. While long tube shaped tunnels is the simplest way to construct a polyhouse, the eden project in the UK is a multiple geodesic dome shaped example.
- My main assumption with the light was that it didn't create a shadow where the potatoes where growing beneath the edges of the platform.
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Old 10-07-2018, 09:25 AM   #240
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Default Re: [ATE] Farming example

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Growing potatoes in sacks, I've seen this several places, Dame Whina Cooper making mention of it is the earliest I can recall coming across it.
https://www.herald.co.zw/when-potato...-in-sacks/amp/
It came to mind after I recently read about a charity providing ready made kits for local school kids that they could hang off walls. I've also grown tomatoes in a similar manner before, hanging them off the washing line.

Other things that I forgot to mention.
- the plastic polyhouses would be double glazed to maintain a warm growing environment. While long tube shaped tunnels is the simplest way to construct a polyhouse, the eden project in the UK is a multiple geodesic dome shaped example.
- My main assumption with the light was that it didn't create a shadow where the potatoes where growing beneath the edges of the platform.
That's correct. The light comes from above, at these altitudes. Lower down, it comes from the emitter algae.
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