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Old 03-27-2014, 08:01 AM   #31
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

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Originally Posted by Vaevictis Asmadi View Post
I'm liking the "colliding binary neutron stars" idea.
The issue there is that those are already supernova remnants. Unless very ancient the supernova that produced the neutron stars would leave a bubble of hot gas the way the Geminga supernova did. I haven't heard of a detectable bubble besides the Geminga one in our neighborhood.

<shrug>It's more possible and I can't rule it out but it still requires some extremely improbable events.
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:18 AM   #32
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

As was pointed out the March 5th, 1979 GRB event seems to be the implied change. This article links it to a possible magnetar in the Greater Magellanic Cloud. This paper links soft gamma ray repeaters (SGR) with gamma ray bursters, stating its just a matter of direction; if you get hit full on it looks like a GRB, otherwise you see only the spillover, seen as a SGR.

I think the improbably event is that the burst hit us head on, at an order of magnitude or three greater than the real life burst. Apparently March 5 lasted only 2/10ths of a second - if it lasted 10 seconds it could have done more than swamp some astronomy instruments.

Anyway, the original post was for what the reaction would be. Panic (probable) or peaceful acceptance and a quiet passing into that good night (yeah, right).

If there are pocket of survivors I'd also go with an extreme paranoia and mystical mindset. Plenty of studies show that when people have to deal with events totally beyond their control they usually attribute events to non-logical sources; like evenly match sports teams with the members wearing lucky hats or socks or using lucky balls. The unfortunate Syrian situation was even more illustrative. Interviews with the anti-Assad forces were blaming Isreal and the West; they acknowledged that Assad was an enemy of Isreal, but through convoluted "logic" were able to convince themselves somehow Isreal and the US was behind their suffering. Politics aside that is the classic mark of people with nothing left and bewildered by events.

I'm sure survivor populations would be just as paranoid. Americans would blame Soviets, and visa versa. Traditional enemies would blame each other. If their scavenging teams met they would likely attack, and probably try to destroy enemy bases.

Homeline might think that Lucifer3 is empty but in fact have several pockets of very paranoid survivors, armed to the teeth and probably possessing nuclear weapons. Infinity agents blundering into THAT would have a heck of a time explaining themselves.
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Old 03-27-2014, 01:48 PM   #33
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

No doubt some people would think it's the Rapture or the Apocalypse, or whatever. Somewhere somebody else will blame aliens.

Anyone who's left alive will probably also be desperate enough to kill and eat strangers, such as ISWAT. Might make rescue operations a bit awkward...

Agent 1: Holy crap, I can't believe anybody is still alive in this hellhole!
Agent 2: Hey you down there! We've come to help you!
Guy in rags: Meat!
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Old 03-27-2014, 02:28 PM   #34
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

Of course, when you're carrying a ton of food with you already, that may be quite easily solved. Though anyone who makes it 30 years isn't going to be insane. They'll be paranoid, but not insane.
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Old 03-27-2014, 02:28 PM   #35
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The issue there is that those are already supernova remnants. Unless very ancient the supernova that produced the neutron stars would leave a bubble of hot gas the way the Geminga supernova did. I haven't heard of a detectable bubble besides the Geminga one in our neighborhood.
Actually they are pretty common. In fact the Sun sits fairly close to the boundary of the Local Bubble and the Loop1 Bubble, which raises the local density a bit over both, though still vastly lower than the galactic average.

There's also quite a lot of debate over what supernovae were responsible, the Gemini gamma ray source is a popular candidate, but the irregular shape seems to point at several supernovae being involved. The other favorites are stars formed and since exploded in association with the Pleiades. In any case, as geologic things go, the Local Bubble is not particularly old, no more than a few 10s of millions of years. There's been lots of time for neutron stars to have formed around here long before it existed, and lots of time for ones formed quite far away to have moved into this vicinity or vice versa.
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Old 03-27-2014, 03:46 PM   #36
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

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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).
....
You drew the short straw private, so you get to go to one of the Fart realities. Depressing because as long as you can smell it it hasn't hit toxic levels.
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Old 03-27-2014, 07:53 PM   #37
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In any case, as geologic things go, the Local Bubble is not particularly old, no more than a few 10s of millions of years. it .
The estimate I have for the Geminga pulsar is only 30,000 years.

Any relatively close neutron star binary ought to be a known x-ray source.
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Old 03-27-2014, 08:16 PM   #38
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The estimate I have for the Geminga pulsar is only 30,000 years.
I've never seen one *that* low, but the error bars on just about everything related to Geminga are huge, like +/-100%, even on how far away it is, and they're as bad or worse on the Local Bubble dates.

Edit: 300,000 seems to be pretty popular on recent pages, did you drop a zero? Unfortunately it's 4 or so sectors to Rimward, so it's in the wrong place to blame the Ancients for a Traveller game.
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Old 11-03-2017, 07:56 AM   #39
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Photobiological effects at Earth's surface following a 50 pc Supernova

Recent paper on arXiv describing the likely effects of local supernovae, such as are thought to have happened ~2.5 and 8 Mya.

Short version: not enough damage to cause a major extinction event, much less "sterilization." So, we're left with the most likely cause for Lucifer-3 being some flavor of gamma ray burst.
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Old 11-03-2017, 09:20 AM   #40
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Default Re: [IW] Imagining Lucifer-3

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The estimate I have for the Geminga pulsar is only 30,000 years.

Any relatively close neutron star binary ought to be a known x-ray source.
Any rapidly rotating neutron star is a known x-ray source. Slow rotating neutron stars are almost impossible to detect if they are not consuming matter (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neutron_star).

A plausible scenario would be a dead neutron star passes by the Sol System and runs into a rogue gas giant the size of Saturn within 1 light-year of the Earth. With the accretion causing 10% of the mass of the rogue planet to turn into gamma rays, the energy released would equal 5 * 10^42 J of energy. It is 'only' 10% of the energy of a typical GRB, but it would occur within 1 light-year of the Earth rather than within 30,000 light-years.

The Earth would receive 4 GJ of energy per square meter from the event, which would blow off the atmosphere if it happened in an instant. If it occurred over a month though, the extra flux of 1.69 kW per square meter would raise the surface temperature to uninhabitable levels, which would kill off everyone without destroying most of the infrastructure. When the accretion ended, the temperature would return to normal, though everything other than extremophiles would be dead.
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