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Old 10-06-2019, 01:36 PM   #8
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Cambridge, UK
Default Re: [Spaceships] How should a large station... duck?

Originally Posted by DataPacRat View Post
I'm hoping to find some numbers that add up to let the large cylinder be sufficiently unpredictable to dodge any good-sized near-c impactor before that impactor can change course.
This is simple, in principle. The key question is how much delta-V can you generate at right angles to the impactor's trajectory, after you detect him?

If this is definitely more than he can generate in that time for changing his course to try to hit, by enough to cover the size of your cylinder and the impactor, you can force him to miss.

If you can't generate even enough to cover the sizes of the cylinder and the impactor, he'll hit if he was already on course to do so when you detected him.

If it's in between those values, it's a matter of life-or-death tactics in a brief period of time.

You do have an advantage in that relativistic time dilation operates to his disadvantage, both on his reaction time and on his thrust. However, he's going to be ready to react, and the cylinder won't be unless it has an automated defence system against this kind of threat, which is on-line all the time.
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