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Old 10-30-2019, 04:53 PM   #11
AlexanderHowl
 
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Default Re: (Semi-)plausible plasma weapons, plasma powers, and plasma damage?

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Originally Posted by Refplace View Post
How so on the long range in space? You have two forces trying to spread out a plasma. Magnetic repulsion as the charged gas has the same charge so repels itself. Pressure dispersion as a high pressure item will spread out into a lower pressure environment.
It is moving at around 0.05c, so it cannot really spread out that much over 100 km (it has around 66 milliseconds to spread). It uses an effect similar to the shape charge used for the nuclear bombs of the Orion drive. Instead of focusing it on a 60-degree arc, it focuses it on a 1-minute arc, which allows the explosion to do damage at a distance.
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Old 10-30-2019, 05:06 PM   #12
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Default Re: (Semi-)plausible plasma weapons, plasma powers, and plasma damage?

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Originally Posted by AlexanderHowl View Post
It is moving at around 0.05c, so it cannot really spread out that much over 100 km (it has around 66 milliseconds to spread). It uses an effect similar to the shape charge used for the nuclear bombs of the Orion drive. Instead of focusing it on a 60-degree arc, it focuses it on a 1-minute arc, which allows the explosion to do damage at a distance.
Fair point if the velocity is that high. I had always tended to dismiss plasma weapons effectiveness but dont recall taking speed into account. If you can get it high enough dispersion seems a lot less a factor. In atmosphere you still have to deal with resistance of the medium so range is going to be reduced.
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Old 10-30-2019, 05:30 PM   #13
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Default Re: (Semi-)plausible plasma weapons, plasma powers, and plasma damage?

Oh, I agree about most designs. It is just that most of the concerns take a backseat when a fusion bomb is the ammunition. Of course, this requires a 10cm munition at TL9, but it should be more effective than a X-ray warhead (Proximity damage from C-range).
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Old 10-30-2019, 05:33 PM   #14
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Default Re: (Semi-)plausible plasma weapons, plasma powers, and plasma damage?

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It is moving at around 0.05c, so it cannot really spread out that much over 100 km
Sure it can. If 10% of its velocity is off-axis, it will spread 10 km.
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Old 10-30-2019, 07:49 PM   #15
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Default Re: How to create/justify a "realistic" firebending power? Fire, plasma, etc.?

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By atmosphere I do indeed mean just generic air. I'd imagine the super could get better efficiencies if he's just working with one component of the atmosphere (so just oxygen, just CO2, etc), but don't know enough about plasma physics to say which one.

It's probably alright - perhaps the power involves serious excitation of electrons, heating up the air and producing plasma as the electrons are stripped from the molecules. Do note, however, that any serious electricity-generating powers will give the character magnetic powers in a setting that attempts realism. This is because electricity and magnetism are very closely related, and one can readily create the other - running electricity through a "wire," which can just be any stable path, produces a magnetic field, while moving a wire through a magnetic field (or moving a magnetic field over a wire) will generate electricity in the wire. The former is how electromagnets work (and more mundane magnets are produced by exposure to other magnetic fields, so you can use this to make a "permanent" magnet). The latter is how the bulk of electricity is produced in the modern age (typically using steam to turn a turbine). The interactions of these two phenomena are how metal detectors work (they use electricity to generate a magnetic field, this generates electricity in metal objects, and the detector picks up the resulting weak magnetic field from this), and also why shielded networking cable gets a cleaner signal (the shielding prevents magnetic fields from nearby electrical wires from generating bursts of electricity and interfering with the signal).
I just learned so much from your reply, so thank you. I'm going to try to sum up what I'm understanding about plasma powers.

Generating it could involve ionization powers that excites electrons to ionize atmosphere into plasma (though, is that just electron manipulation because ionization is a process?), heat powers to sufficiently heat up atmosphere into plasma, electricity powers to "excite" (if that's the right term) atmosphere into plasma, air powers to super-compress atmosphere into plasma, or magnetism powers to... well, they do something that I don't understand too well still. I guess another option would be nuclear fusion powers, but that seems like it could be used for way more impressive things than generating plasma.

Containing or shaping it could involve plasma powers themselves (like plasma-limited telekinesis with a perk like Hydrokinesis to allow telekinesis to act as a container), or either air powers or magnetism powers to influence plasma.

Directing it could involve plasma powers themselves again (manipulating it into a self-containing toroid or spheroid should be possible), air powers could produce similar effects, or magnetism powers could do the same or contain it through a magnetic bubble (which apparently exist?).

I'm more than fine with plasma-limited telekinesis as a way of containing it and directing it, but I guess I'm still a bit tripped up on the best way (for my wants) to justify generating/acquiring plasma. Plasma-limited telekinesis could also pull plasma from the upper atmosphere, which, if I understand correctly, is pretty abundant. Though, that would require a long range and some high speeds. There don't seem to be very many other terrestrial plasmas readily available.

I like the ionization power for also generating particle beams. (It could also work for that, right?) The combination of an electricity power with plasma-limited telekinesis also works for guiding something like an electrolaser. Both would fit with firebenders being able to generate "lightning", which would be a huge bonus and nice plus.

My biggest worry about electricity powers is that, if the super has those, why wouldn't they opt for more primary applications of electricity instead of generating plasma. Maybe limiting the electricity power to small enough effects would stop them from overshadowing the plasma stuff. That makes sense, right? How much electricity do you need to generate enough plasma from the atmosphere to use it as an attack? A spark? Enough for a small arc (like a plasma torch)?
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Old 10-30-2019, 08:04 PM   #16
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Default Re: How to create/justify a "realistic" firebending power? Fire, plasma, etc.?

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My biggest worry about electricity powers is that, if the super has those, why wouldn't they opt for more primary applications of electricity instead of generating plasma. Maybe limiting the electricity power to small enough effects would stop them from overshadowing the plasma stuff. That makes sense, right? How much electricity do you need to generate enough plasma from the atmosphere to use it as an attack? A spark? Enough for a small arc (like a plasma torch)?
The worry about electricity being too broad is easy to fix. Just say that the power can only energize or excite electrons so they separate from the atoms but cant really control or manipulate hem.

I'm not sure you really understand what a plasma is though so I think this article might help. https://www.livescience.com/54652-plasma.html
It also gives some other inspirations for a super.
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Old 10-30-2019, 08:09 PM   #17
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Default Re: How to create/justify a "realistic" firebending power? Fire, plasma, etc.?

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How much electricity do you need to generate enough plasma from the atmosphere to use it as an attack? A spark? Enough for a small arc (like a plasma torch)?
Enough that you might as well use it as an attack. I mean, a lightning bolt that doesn't go through someone does cause plasma burns, but that's generally less damaging than having it go through you.
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Old 10-30-2019, 08:17 PM   #18
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Default Re: How to create/justify a "realistic" firebending power? Fire, plasma, etc.?

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The worry about electricity being too broad is easy to fix. Just say that the power can only energize or excite electrons so they separate from the atoms but cant really control or manipulate hem.
That's a great and simple solution, and essentially what I was looking for when I said I wanted an "ionization" power.

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Originally Posted by Refplace View Post
I'm not sure you really understand what a plasma is though so I think this article might help. https://www.livescience.com/54652-plasma.html
It also gives some other inspirations for a super.
Is there anything in particular that you feel I'm missing or not understanding? That was actually one of the first articles that I read on my internet research journey, so it's a bummer to feel like I'm not grasping this well. I'm doing my best to understand, but I've also been cramming all of this new information into my brain on top of other things today (and yesterday).

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Enough that you might as well use it as an attack. I mean, a lightning bolt that doesn't go through someone does cause plasma burns, but that's generally less damaging than having it go through you.
That's exactly what I was worried about, though Refplace's suggestion seems to help me work around that. I know plasma isn't the best choice for a weapon, but I'm pretty set on trying to make this super concept (and the super group concept) work.

Last edited by Raekai; 10-30-2019 at 08:20 PM.
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Old 10-30-2019, 08:41 PM   #19
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Default Re: How to create/justify a "realistic" firebending power? Fire, plasma, etc.?

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Originally Posted by Raekai View Post
Is there anything in particular that you feel I'm missing or not understanding? That was actually one of the first articles that I read on my internet research journey, so it's a bummer to feel like I'm not grasping this well. I'm doing my best to understand, but I've also been cramming all of this new information into my brain on top of other things today (and yesterday).
It was just a feeling based on some of the power descriptions, I easily could be wrong, and hoped I expressed that in my reply.
Plasma really is not a property of heat, its more a side effect in that heating up the gas excites the electrons. So a plasma doesn't have to be actually very hot, thats just the easiest and most common method in the real world.

If I wanted to create a super who creates and controls plasma I would consider several special effects.
Magnetic or electrical powers could create and control.
Heat could create, but not control.
Vibration powers could also create, as could that hypothetical exciting electrons.
A limited TK could also do this, especially if the limitation was based more on the mental concept by the super than a power limitation/special effect.

One nice effect could be a extended level explosion taking advantage of the improved wave effect.
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Old 10-31-2019, 09:46 AM   #20
Raekai
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Default Re: How to create/justify a "realistic" firebending power? Fire, plasma, etc.?

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Originally Posted by Refplace View Post
It was just a feeling based on some of the power descriptions, I easily could be wrong, and hoped I expressed that in my reply.
Plasma really is not a property of heat, its more a side effect in that heating up the gas excites the electrons. So a plasma doesn't have to be actually very hot, thats just the easiest and most common method in the real world.

If I wanted to create a super who creates and controls plasma I would consider several special effects.
Magnetic or electrical powers could create and control.
Heat could create, but not control.
Vibration powers could also create, as could that hypothetical exciting electrons.
A limited TK could also do this, especially if the limitation was based more on the mental concept by the super than a power limitation/special effect.

One nice effect could be a extended level explosion taking advantage of the improved wave effect.
You're right. I was mostly just skipping steps in my explanations because I knew I wasn't going to be terribly accurate anyway! By "heating up the atmosphere enough that it turns into plasma" I mean "heating up the atmosphere enough to excite the electrons enough that they are freed, which results in a plasma". Though, I'm not even sure if that is sufficiently correct...

Also, I really appreciate that succinct explanation of how you would use those powers. I think that pretty much gives me all that I need!
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