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Old 02-03-2019, 03:11 PM   #132
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Default Re: Antarctic Space Nazis Across the Multiverse

Originally Posted by johndallman View Post
Further materials that will be needed, and ways of getting them:

Copper has all sorts of important uses, but is fairly easy to mine and smelt.

Zinc is more of a problem. You can make brass without extracting metallic zinc, by including its ore in the melt along with fluxes, but you need metallic zinc for hot-dip corrosion-proofing and extracting that needs industrial electrochemistry.

Aluminium also needs electrochemistry, and lots of pure carbon and Fluorite.
I've not yet made any explicit decisions about most of these, except that any raw materials found in Earth's Rhineland, Saxony and Westphalia will probably be somewhere within 300 km of the first settlement in Germania Hyperborea, with most stuff found anywhere on Earth's Germany and the Benelux countries probably existing somewhere not much further than 500 km from it. If they're lucky, something might be found quite locally, of course, especially if it's something Westphalia and the Rhineland has in abundance. That being said, let's make at least few decisions.

About 350 km southeast from the first settlement in Germania Hyperborea is a rough analogue of the Erzgebirgen, with deposits of copper, tin, arsenic, iron, tungsten, lead, silver, nickel, zinc, cobalt, bismuth and uranium, plus iron and manganese oxides. It's actually closer to another gate they have access to in Germania Hyperborea that leads to a more easterly region, at just under 300 km from it, but as the ASNs didn't settle around the more easterly gate in any numbers, at least at first, it's not necessarily certain that that gate would become associated with the mining industry.

The TL2 locals around the first ASN settlement had some limited trade routes with various TL2-3 societies around the analogue Ore Mountains, where there has been tin and copper mining for at least a millenia and probably longer. Pretty much all the societies ASNs have encountered have old and established trade links with some society that eventually reaches these mountains, as they appear to be the primary source of tin for most of them, going back as long as any native source can attest. There are other major tin sources for local societies both south and west of the ASNs, but they are well over a thousand km away in both cases, with the 'closer' source being located on miserable islands with unfriendly natives.

If they'd planned to trade for tin from the west, the ASNs probably should have avoided having every tribe and kingdom for a thousand kilometers westward regard them as demonic anathema and sworn enemies of their gods. Sometimes the traditional SS way of making friends and influencing people can be less effective than a foreign policy that isn't founded in massacres, slave-taking and the casual desecration of cherished religious and cultural centres. Granted, some of the locals were not entirely blameless, as even Nazis can legitimately disapprove of head-hunting.

All of the minerals I mentioned above also exist somewhere in Jötunheim, all of them accessible within 300 km of one of their gates there, but whether the ASNs are lucky enough to have a major and easily worked source conveniently located within walking distance of a gate I haven't decided. Well, actually, there are multiple sources of both organic and inorganic carbon close to gates there, such as coal, peat, dolomites and limestone, but I don't have a clue about the extraction methods used to get pure carbon from these.

There are plentiful deposits of Fluorite near several iron mines used by TL2-3 societies about 500 km south of the initial ASN settlement in Germania Hyperborea. Ironically, this could justify both the settlement of Treckbaueren insterested in growing tobacco somewhere in that area and a greater acceptance of allied tribes providing auxiliary and irregular cavalry, if anyone is going to set up a settlement that far away that will be transporting things overland for great distances. On the other hand, perhaps there are more convenient Jötunheim sources, at least for the limited amounts they need at first.

Originally Posted by johndallman View Post
So let's look at how to bootstrap electric power generation. A decision to take right at the start is the AC frequency you're going to use, followed by the standard voltages you want. There seems no reason not to stay with the German standard of 220V 50Hz, and that greatly simplifies taking electrical equipment across.

For the Last Redoubt, you clearly want hydro-electric power for cleanness, and some kits of small-scale turbines and generators can be produced in Germany that will break down into 400lb loads. There may well be an annoying amount of cable splicing required by the need to carry cable in fairly small reels, and the required copper will have to be diverted from SS industrial plant in Poland, since its use was strictly controlled by the Ministry of War Production.
That all sounds reasonable. Note that while Elemental Furnaces are ideal for the Wahr Wewelsburg and the idyllic countryside around it in the magical demiplane of the Last Redoubt, none of ASN initial planning and preparations for their otherworldly colonies could be based on it, as the magical theory behind it was not an ASN invention and the invention took them by surprise when their allies in Svartálfrheim revealed it. In any event, the Elemental Furnace cannot have been invented unti Year 10 at the earliest, with Year 15-20 more likely, and the ASNs didn't develop the ability to make their own until around Year 20-25.

And, of course, Elemental Furnaces are not easy to make in any kind of industrial numbers. Each one made in Svartálfrheim is a work of art by a skilled magician and master craftsmen and while ASN engineers can standardize the mechanical parts and benefit from economies of scale in making parts for many furnaces, that doesn't translate into churning out Elemental Furnaces from massive assembly-lines.

The vital magical elements that makes it an Elemental Furnace instead of just a steam engine cannot be made any faster than a powerful mage can bind individual elementals, which is made much harder if he must work with machine-made parts rather than having the assistence of occult-aware artists and craftsmen for whom the creation of the furnace is a quasi-mystical labour. So, essentially, while you can mass-manufacture every part and then have them enchanted when a suitably powerful magi can get to it, at some point the savings in mundane materials and labour stop being worth it, as they simply translate into more work for the magician, and the time of powerful magicians will be a scarce resource almost anywhere.

What this means is that Elemental Furnaces are neat and they are used in important roles where either operational necessity or SS leadership eccentricity, such as environmental concerns, makes their unique traits desirable, but for most industrial uses, they are never going to be competative with technological methods of power generation, not while coal is so plentiful.

Originally Posted by johndallman View Post
For your industrial areas, an initial hydro plant is still a good idea because it's relatively easy to get working to provide some power on site. But you're going to need to build coal-fired power stations quite soon. That needs lots of steel fabrication, lots of copper, lots of bricks and cement (Oh, cement! That's a problem), and building large turbines and generators.
The industrial sites need the relatively abundant power possible with coal plants as the first priority. The Lords of the Last Waste must be fed, after all. The first thing the future ASNs did in 1943, when Jötunheim had been discovered, was start planning for coal power plants there, which would ideally be brought online as close to settlement as possible.

At any rate, there would hopefully have been some electrical power generation on the Neue Ruhr site as soon as the start of 1944, even if that required bringing a special generator design over in custom pieces, whether that was a minituarized hydro plant, some kind of advanced steam engine designed with TL6-7 concepts or some version of a TL7 diesel generator (not ideal, as that would require constant supplies of diesel from 1944-1945 Germany during the preparation process, which wastes available tonnage which could go on anything other than a consumable resource, but perhaps the only truly small generator they had ready for modification). The outpost there needed power during the research and preparation phase, after all. Can't expect engineers, technicians and surveyors to work in the dark, without TL7 instrumentation and tools.

Edit: As for cement, do large deposits of volcanic tuff (i.e. trass) help? Those can be found between 220 km to 250 km southwest of the Exernsteine gate on Germania Hyperborea.

Jötunheim has lots of tuff and volcanic ash within 50 km, and the amounts get bigger and bigger until you reach active volcanism that is taking place within 250 km of the first and main gate, but it's not identical to the pozzolana that the Romans used in such vast quantities. Still, the ash does contain volcanic glass, just mostly at 25%-40% rather than over 50% concentration. If you go near the active volcanoes, you get better porous glass concentrations. There is plenty of limestone in Jötunheim, including easily accessible sources near the primary gate.
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Last edited by Icelander; 02-04-2019 at 06:09 AM.
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