Steve Jackson Games - Site Navigation
Home General Info Follow Us Search Illuminator Store Forums What's New Other Games Ogre GURPS Munchkin Our Games: Home

Go Back   Steve Jackson Games Forums > Roleplaying > GURPS

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 06-02-2011, 09:00 AM   #1
vicky_molokh
GURPS FAQ Keeper
 
vicky_molokh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kyv, Ukraine
Default Minimum TL for a self-sufficient Vault City or equivalent bunker?

Greetings, all!

I'm trying to figure out the minimal TL at which it becomes possible to construct a self-sufficient sealed complex, such as the various underground Vault Cities of Fallout. Optionally, this includes figuring out split TL if some components appear earlier than others.

The problem of having constant power for many processes maybe requires TL7.
For life support, Open Space (from Spaceships) is technically TL7, but I'm wondering if it's possible to do earlier - I think an important question is the availability of full-spectrum light sources for plants.
Other issues of life support might also allow or not allow below-TL7 implementation.

Edit: I'm working on the assumption that mining deeper is allowed, as is digging to the sides for expansion. It just has to survive without reaching the surface (shallow water counts as surface, but if somebody has comments about a 100m+ deep underwater base, suits the purpose about as well - just have to know which of the projects is discussed).

Opinions?
Thanks in advance!
__________________
Vicky 'Molokh', GURPS FAQ and uFAQ Keeper
Also, GURPS Discord is a nice place for (faster) Q&A and overall GURPS dicussion.

Last edited by vicky_molokh; 06-02-2011 at 10:18 AM.
vicky_molokh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2011, 09:34 AM   #2
Ed the Coastie
 
Ed the Coastie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Sierra Vista, Arizona
Default Re: Minimum TL for a self-sufficient Vault City or equivalent bunker?

I read somewhere* that a self-sustaining colony could be maintained in a large cave system using the technology of the late 19th Century (late TL 5 or early TL 6). As you said, power is going to be a bit of a problem...but once the colony is established, it could easily be maintained.






* I don't remember for sure where I read it -- it was several years ago in -- but I think it was in an old copy of OMNI magazine.
__________________
"It's never to early to start beefing up your obituary." -- The Most Interesting Man in the World
Ed the Coastie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2011, 09:56 AM   #3
Purple Haze
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Default Re: Minimum TL for a self-sufficient Vault City or equivalent bunker?

It is debatable if we even currently have the technology. Certainly the experiments we've done have had mixed success at best. (See "Biosphere 2")

Plants don't need a full spectrum just a red light and a blue light in varying proportions depending on their stage. I have grown crops indoors, metal halides for growth, high pressure sodium for flowering. Fluorescents will do in a pinch, but the normal ones lack enough red. Getting rid of excess heat is the largest problem.

Basic problem with closed systems is that if one is slightly off of equilibrium they tend to go bad quickly.
Purple Haze is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2011, 09:59 AM   #4
Sam Baughn
 
Sam Baughn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: United Kingdom of Great Britain and some other bits.
Default Re: Minimum TL for a self-sufficient Vault City or equivalent bunker?

Didn't we try (and, if I recall correctly, fail) to make a closed ecosystem in the late ninties? Called Biosphere 2 or something like that, I think.

EDIT: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biosphere_2

Apparently they had a lot of problems keeping the system stable for 2 years. This suggests to me that TL 8 is probably the bare minimum and TL 9 would probably be desirable before commiting to putting several generations of people in there.

Last edited by Sam Baughn; 06-02-2011 at 10:06 AM.
Sam Baughn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2011, 10:12 AM   #5
malloyd
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Default Re: Minimum TL for a self-sufficient Vault City or equivalent bunker?

Quote:
Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
The problem of having constant power for many processes
Commercial geothermal is no later than TL6, and should work. These things always have a lava flow somewhere for adventurers to fall into anyway right?

Quote:
For life support, Open Space (from Spaceships) is technically TL7, but I'm wondering if it's possible to do earlier - I think an important question is the availability of full-spectrum light sources for plants.
It's only hard with incandescents, arc lamps can easily have much higher brightness temperatures, and are solidly TL5 technologies.


Certainly most of the problems you'd face are understood by the end of TL5. I'd have no problem believing a fully closed cycle at TL 5+1 if there were better incentives for developing one. Historically, well, we haven't got a completely closed life support system yet, though systems have been demonstrated for over a year that only need a pound or two per year of trace nutrients. And closing those last few micronutrient loops is really only hard because our design driver is largely space-flight related, where mass and volume constraints matter a *lot*. If you can't do it on less mass than a decade's supply of the micronutrient weighs, there's not much point for a spacecraft. Underground complexes have an easier time there.
__________________
--
MA Lloyd
malloyd is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2011, 10:14 AM   #6
vicky_molokh
GURPS FAQ Keeper
 
vicky_molokh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kyv, Ukraine
Default Re: Minimum TL for a self-sufficient Vault City or equivalent bunker?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Perfect Organism View Post
Didn't we try (and, if I recall correctly, fail) to make a closed ecosystem in the late ninties? Called Biosphere 2 or something like that, I think.

EDIT: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biosphere_2

Apparently they had a lot of problems keeping the system stable for 2 years. This suggests to me that TL 8 is probably the bare minimum and TL 9 would probably be desirable before commiting to putting several generations of people in there.
Apples to oranges, IMHO - B2 is a mere 1/100th of a square kilometer in area, and is dedicated to trying to create a diverse biosphere representing many climates, not a system dedicated to allowing the optimal existence of a human-life population in a closed space.
__________________
Vicky 'Molokh', GURPS FAQ and uFAQ Keeper
Also, GURPS Discord is a nice place for (faster) Q&A and overall GURPS dicussion.
vicky_molokh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2011, 10:18 AM   #7
Langy
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: CA
Default Re: Minimum TL for a self-sufficient Vault City or equivalent bunker?

An RTG would be a good power source for a Vault. No moving parts, so they last an awful long time without maintenance - and that's probably going to be the crucial thing here, along with life support.

If you had a big enough vault with enough spare parts and people in it you could probably do it at TL6, sure, maybe even lower if you found a suitable enough plant that grows underground without sunlight. The hard part is making it not the size of a city and having it last a significant amount of time.
Langy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2011, 10:29 AM   #8
Witchking
 
Witchking's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: The Athens of America
Default Re: Minimum TL for a self-sufficient Vault City or equivalent bunker?

Also if you are going with the Vault setting...you only need to be near-perfect...

If someone goofs or a critical part is damaged you can always find some faceless guy to go OUTSIDE...
__________________
My center is giving way, my right is in retreat; situation excellent. I shall attack.-Foch
America is not perfect, but I will hold her hand until she gets well.-unk Tuskegee Airman
Witchking is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2011, 10:30 AM   #9
vicky_molokh
GURPS FAQ Keeper
 
vicky_molokh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kyv, Ukraine
Default Re: Minimum TL for a self-sufficient Vault City or equivalent bunker?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Langy View Post
An RTG would be a good power source for a Vault. No moving parts, so they last an awful long time without maintenance - and that's probably going to be the crucial thing here, along with life support.

If you had a big enough vault with enough spare parts and people in it you could probably do it at TL6, sure, maybe even lower if you found a suitable enough plant that grows underground without sunlight.
That's the problem. No sunlight, no photosynthesis. No photosynthesis, no oxygen. Fungi don't exactly need sunlight, but aren't plants either.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Langy View Post
The hard part is making it not the size of a city and having it last a significant amount of time.
Oh, making it the size of a city is actually good. Making it last 60+ years is pretty important.
__________________
Vicky 'Molokh', GURPS FAQ and uFAQ Keeper
Also, GURPS Discord is a nice place for (faster) Q&A and overall GURPS dicussion.
vicky_molokh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2011, 10:39 AM   #10
vicky_molokh
GURPS FAQ Keeper
 
vicky_molokh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kyv, Ukraine
Default Re: Minimum TL for a self-sufficient Vault City or equivalent bunker?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Witchking View Post
Also if you are going with the Vault setting...you only need to be near-perfect...

If someone goofs or a critical part is damaged you can always find some faceless guy to go OUTSIDE...
No, just using it as an example. Going outside should actually not be an option for at least half a century.
__________________
Vicky 'Molokh', GURPS FAQ and uFAQ Keeper
Also, GURPS Discord is a nice place for (faster) Q&A and overall GURPS dicussion.
vicky_molokh is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
base, bunker, colony, self-sufficient, vault city

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Fnords are Off
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:24 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.