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Old 03-26-2014, 07:39 PM   #21
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

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Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
I'd think there's a fairly straightforward if physically improbable way to get the required effect.

Lethal neutrino flux.

If you sweep earth that way there's going to be some serious property damage.
Xkcd says not to worry about neutrino flux, if you are that close you are already inside the star going supernova, and neutrinos are the least of your problems.
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Old 03-26-2014, 07:40 PM   #22
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Consider Beta Hydri. I don't know whether it's a supernova candidate, .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beta_Hydri

...has Beta Hydri being barely more massive than the Sun. It won't even make a decent Red Giant.

If you want a future supernova you need to go here....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antares

....and even at 15-18 solar masses Antares won't make a top rank boom. It is the closes tone I know of and the Wiki article implies the same.

It's also 550 ly distant which is about the same distance of the Geminga pulsar. That's a supernova remnant from about 30,000 years ago. No really big mass extinctions tied to that time period.

A parallel Earth with a supernova candidate close enough to be really dangerous is going to be highly variant in terms of local astronomy. Gurps Space 4e puts the sort of Type O stars you need at 1 in 3,000,000 in our neighborhood.
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Old 03-26-2014, 07:53 PM   #23
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beta_Hydri

...has Beta Hydri being barely more massive than the Sun. It won't even make a decent Red Giant.
Though that was the premise of the anime Stellvia of the Universe. Earth is devastated by the lightspeed radiation of the supernova Beta Hydri, and 200 years later they are preparing a defense against the matter shockwave.

(The numbers don't work, but they do drag in some Weird Physics later on to help explain it.)
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Old 03-26-2014, 07:53 PM   #24
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

So a supernova is pretty much out, without variant astronomy.

(At least we've reduced the number of things to worry about by one...)
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Old 03-26-2014, 07:54 PM   #25
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

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Though that was the premise of the anime Stellvia of the Universe. Earth is devastated by the lightspeed radiation of the supernova Beta Hydri, and 200 years later they are preparing a defense against the matter shockwave.

(The numbers don't work, but they do drag in some Weird Physics later on to help explain it.)
Which is where I got it from, actually. And the physics is very weird - but not impossible.
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Old 03-26-2014, 08:12 PM   #26
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

One could always leave the exact source of the radiation burst undetermined over the course of the game.
Without knowing what caused it, players might rationally feel that it could happen again at any moment.
The handful of astronomers studying the alternate might each have their own idea, and thus divide the limited research resources.
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Old 03-26-2014, 08:32 PM   #27
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

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Xkcd says not to worry about neutrino flux, if you are that close you are already inside the star going supernova, and neutrinos are the least of your problems.
No, it says not to worry about neutrino flux from a nearby supernova.

That's why I said physically improbable. Getting a neutrino flux like that anywhere that isn't simultaneously being destroyed in other ways would be really bizarre.

But it would let you deliver lethal radiation poisoning to the entire Earth biosphere simultaneously.
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Old 03-26-2014, 09:43 PM   #28
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

Hmm - alternate means of destroying the ozone layer...solar flares, sudden reversals of the magnetic poles, antimatter meteors, multimegaton nukes in the upper atmosphere, ozone eating alien microbes, am I forgetting anything? No SciFi writers' guild, I wasn't asking you.
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Old 03-26-2014, 09:53 PM   #29
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

A smallish comet full of ozone depleting chemicals is at least possible if rather unlikely.
The scientists of the alternate expecting one type of disaster and get an even worse unexpected one.
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Old 03-26-2014, 10:11 PM   #30
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

Well according to the Wikipedia article on the Permo-Triassic extinction, widespread ocean anoxia can encourage anaerobic green sulfur bacteria to produce tons of H2S, which damages the ozone if it gets into the atmosphere (besides just generally being toxic).


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If you sweep earth that way there's going to be some serious property damage.
They did say they're looting the ruins of Lucifer-3. Only really hitting one hemisphere is a bigger argument against it.

I'm liking the "colliding binary neutron stars" idea.
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