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Old 07-17-2017, 09:01 PM   #1
ShadowCharlatan
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Default Assembler Goo MacGuffin

In a Mad Mad wasteland type campaign, if a batch of Assembler Goo (UT pg.85) were introduced as a possible MacGuffin, what could be potentially made using the Assembler Goo with just wasteland sand as a base material, and what would be viable sources of radioactive materials that could be used in different contructions ?
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Old 07-17-2017, 09:15 PM   #2
mr beer
 
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Default Re: Assembler Goo MacGuffin

Australia is rich in iron and uranium, amongst other natural resources. So goo could plausibly assemble using those elements.

Silica is a versatile substance, what did you want it to build? A vast twinkling glass fortress, that gradually eats the wasteland? Von neuman rocky 'beetle' swarms with razor steel pincers and feet? Underground bunkers full of nuclear missiles and guarded by killer robots? Because with sufficient tech, those should all be doable.

Last edited by mr beer; 07-17-2017 at 09:20 PM.
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Old 07-17-2017, 09:19 PM   #3
ShadowCharlatan
 
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Default Re: Assembler Goo MacGuffin

So making new vehicles and firearms wouldn't be out of the question, with the amount of goo determining build rate along with whatever rate the iron could be separated from the sand.
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Old 07-17-2017, 09:21 PM   #4
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: Assembler Goo MacGuffin

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Originally Posted by ShadowCharlatan View Post
So making new vehicles and firearms wouldn't be out of the question, with the amount of goo determining build rate along with whatever rate the iron could be separated from the sand.
Making steel things out of some mineral somewhere isn't out of the question but you won't be able to do it out of any old patch of sand. Most sand is just silicon dioxide.
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Old 07-17-2017, 09:24 PM   #5
mr beer
 
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Default Re: Assembler Goo MacGuffin

It would need to be in the right location. That said, below mining-grade minerals might still be usable by high tech goo.

I'd read the Wikipedia article on mining in Australia and follow up with some googling of Australia, mining, minerals & maps. You should be able to find a location which has an abundance of suitable minerals.

Power sources are important, think about what tech level you are using and what's required for that. It might be cool and flavourful to run everything on dirty gasoline for example but you might need brown coal for that, I don't know.
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Old 07-17-2017, 09:33 PM   #6
ShadowCharlatan
 
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Default Re: Assembler Goo MacGuffin

Was thinking a location similar to the Citadel, any major construction would be building a wall-like construct with cavities in which the weak masses could shelter themselves in.

The locale would would be the single source of new vehicles and weapons but would still dependent on trade for fuel and ammunition.

Also if a ultra-tech vapor collector could be created to provide water (though that would more reliant on how much water could be realistically be extracted in large amounts in a single area
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Old 07-18-2017, 08:37 AM   #7
Bruno
 
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Default Re: Assembler Goo MacGuffin

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
Making steel things out of some mineral somewhere isn't out of the question but you won't be able to do it out of any old patch of sand. Most sand is just silicon dioxide.
The running assumption seems to be Australia, as in Mad Max - and Australian sand, earth, rocks etc in the Red Center are pretty lousy with iron oxides (thus the Red part). Even many of the more lush areas are pretty iron-y.

The sand also contains not-insignificant amounts of organics (it's powdery dehydrated dirt, really) - you can see this when it rains and suddenly there's plants everywhere. Briefly. Regardless, you can also feed the Goo actual plants and animals.

The Center is also pretty lousy with ochre clays, which are mostly iron oxides but there's other metal oxides too (copper and aluminum, in your usual modest quantities). Uranium oxide clay would be... colourful but I'm pretty sure it's not a big thing in the Outback normally.

Another question is plastic: beaches are already a surprisingly high percentage of microfragments of plastic. The Red Center isn't going to be so much because its the wave action that helps grind up the plastic into grains, but there's plastic crap blowing around anywhere, and many of the attempts at making "biodegradable" plastic have resulted in bags that disintigrate into little airborn flakes when exposed to UV light (which due to the hole in the ozone layer, Australia has in spades) but don't actually go away. Depending on how post your post-apocalypse is, and prevailing winds, there could be enough plastic in the soil to compliment other materials.

And of course water, although feeding it your water might be a bit desperate.

This should make at least simple electronics possible - either glass or plastic as insulators for copper wiring and as circuit boards. Power source could be provided by a simple wet-cell battery created by the Goo - not a very easily transported high-power thing, so no lasers.
If you feed it water, the Goo might use solar power to generate hydrogen and create a hydrogen-burning engine to provide power. It could also use the oxygen to provide the oxidizer for explosives (other materials required for basic explosives can be sourced from animals and plants and earth/stones, although probably in big quantities).

More mundanely, it could make coal coke, charcoal, or gasoline given enough quantities of organic material, but that might require a lot of Assembler Goo.
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Old 07-18-2017, 04:10 PM   #8
dcarson
 
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Default Re: Assembler Goo MacGuffin

Solar cells are glass with precise contaminates. So mainly sand. Electricity should not be a problem during the day.
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