GENERAL DISCUSSIONS

Solar System Vs. Galaxy

POSTED BY: MADJACK
UPDATED: Tuesday, January 11, 2005 07:41
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Tuesday, December 28, 2004 4:10 PM

CREVANREAVER


Quote:

Originally posted by Jiltedtoo:
Though it is possible to have multiple planets in an earth type orbit around a sun, it is unlikely there would be multiple planets like Earth around one sun.



Who said it is one sun?

It's most likely a binary, trinary, or even a quarternary system.

See the third post in the thread below for a theory on how multiple Earth-like planets could be in one system...

http://www.fireflyfans.net/thread.asp?b=4&t=6766

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Tuesday, December 28, 2004 4:36 PM

ZOID



Wow, this is a long thread!

Oh look! It just got one longer.


Antitussively,
-zed

P.S.
Who ever invented cold and flu medicines should win a Nobel Prize. I feel great! Zzzzzz...

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Tuesday, December 28, 2004 6:56 PM

JUJANSIN


Well, I've thought extensively on the subject, proving my abject stubbornness concerning issues of realism. I do it with everything from movies to RPG settings.

In any case, my opinion is that the majority, if not all of the series, takes place in one system.

However, not all of the Firefly "universe" is contained within this system.

Think about it. Have they ever referred to Sinon or Londinium as anything but distant capitols? In Serenity, Inara and the Alliance cadet-guy spoke of Sinon as something far away, and relatively inaccesible.

Thus, my theory is that while Serenity mostly knocks around the system based around Ariel and Persephone, there are other solar systems that they do not travel to, which contain the capitals and the other numerous border planets. We've encountered perhaps 12, 13 moons or planets in the show, and I could definitely see one biggish, though not extremely large, solar system supporting these and a few others. So, Serenity and most of the other freighters and the like could poke around this one system, and then you have a few interstellar spaceliners and military ships that travel between the systems. This essentially gives rise to a couple of theories:

1) Likely - Serenity has sublight drives and always stays within one system, while liners travel between systems.

2) Less Likely - Serenity has FTL drives, but can only use them, and rarely at that, in deep space, not in debris-filled solar systems, accounting for some monthlong intervals between episodes, where one here assumes that they are traveling between stars.

3) Most Likely - I am just trying too hard.

Unless I've missed something, I don't see why this general idea can't reconcile the two "one-solar-system" and the "many-solar-systems" camps, assuming, that is, a little bit of FTL for the liners.

Also for your perusal, or perhaps simply your dismissive scrolling past of: something I wrote up on the official boards about the nature of Serenity's propulsion, reposted here for convenience.

"The Firefly Drive posed me a bunch of logical conundrums, especially concerning the scene in the pilot where Serenity and the Reaver ship pass by each other at a glacial pace, when, considering the kinds of distances they have to cover, they should be, theoretically, passing at "velocities" in excess of thousands of kilometers an hour.

Essentially, Serenity drives like a car. (A car with VTOL, that is, and likely some very good antilock brakes.) This is not surprising, it's the most common vehicle used in our world, and people tend to imagine spaceships as moving in a similar way, if subconsciously. It accelerates rather rapidly towards a maximum speed, uses fuel at a relatively even rate, and can stop and start again without losing anything but time.

The Firefly Drive, in my crazy-go-nuts interpretation, provides a constant amount of energy and uses a constant amount of fuel, to power propulsion. This energy can, much like in a car, be used to either "accelerate" the ship (in some perhaps lightspeed-exceeding, non-inertial way) or to maintain current "speed". Much like a car, the greater the "speed" of the ship, the more energy is required to maintain it, meaning the less energy is available for "acceleration". This has the effect of making the maximum "speed" of the ship equal to the maximum level of energy available to maintain speed (adjusted for the mass of the ship, of course.) The ship, simply by cutting off the engine, can stop entirely with no "deceleration" required. Since you can only accelerate to, and maintain, a certain max "speed", there would be no disincentive to stop, for example, to check out another ship traveling through nearby space, it would just take a little longer to get where you're going, no extra fuel required. (Later, of course, that particular other ship turns out to be Reavers, but that's not the point.) "Hard burn" may be a way of adding more energy to "acceleration", at a disproportionately larger fuel consumption than normal. (In "The Message", however, I remember Wash telling Kaylee to prepare for hard burn, but they were actually just using the side-jets, so the jets may in fact be tied in to the main engine, with hard burn also providing extra energy for them.)

Essentially, this accounts for:
-Ships stopping to look at each other in the middle of nowhere.
-The long periods of drifting with no acceleration, where the ring-spinny-thing can be seen doing what it does best, which is maintaining "speed".
-The apparently slow departure of Serenity as it does its glowy-gas discharge (it just continues accelerating to its max speed.)

On the gravity front, just consider the weight, under 1 G, of all objects in the ship. That's the force required to hold it all down. How much could that be? 10, 15 tons, maybe, which is not much when you consider the other capabilities of Serenity. Certainly within the power of some auxiliary tertiary-backup system. I suspect that there are three systems:

The main engine, providing main life support; the secondary life support; and the gravity and lights system, running off some other power supply, possibly of an incompatible type with the other systems."

Quantity over cohesiveness, people!

(Edit) - Had to tweak the formatting, copy-pasting from serenitymovie.com caused problems.

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Wednesday, December 29, 2004 1:27 AM

GROUNDED


You do not require additional energy to maintain a constant speed in space, once you've accelerated up to that speed.

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Wednesday, December 29, 2004 9:06 AM

JILTEDTOO


Quote:

Originally posted by CrevanReaver:
Quote:

Originally posted by Jiltedtoo:
Though it is possible to have multiple planets in an earth type orbit around a sun, it is unlikely there would be multiple planets like Earth around one sun.



Who said it is one sun?

It's most likely a binary, trinary, or even a quarternary system.

See the third post in the thread below for a theory on how multiple Earth-like planets could be in one system...

http://www.fireflyfans.net/thread.asp?b=4&t=6766



What would it matter if it were a single Star or a Binary Star System? If it were a Binary star system the chances of a non-gas giant habitable Earth type planet would decrease, rather then increase. Your Argument is best kept at a single star solar system.

JT

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Wednesday, December 29, 2004 9:06 AM

JILTEDTOO


Duplicate post

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Wednesday, December 29, 2004 9:54 AM

WYDRAZ


I agree there's GOT to be more than one star system in the Firefly universe -- or else how could they all make the assumption that humans are the only ones around? You cannot colonize one unoccupied star system and then proclaim that there are no aliens in the galaxy. Joss should ponder this a bit more.

Also, just because there might not be FTL does not mean that ships cannot travel between systems in a short time. Wormholes, anyone?



Oh, and play Strange Adventures in Infinite Space. http://digital-eel.com/sais

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Wednesday, December 29, 2004 11:29 AM

CONSCIENCE


Quote:

Originally posted by wydraz:
Also, just because there might not be FTL does not mean that ships cannot travel between systems in a short time. Wormholes, anyone?



Wydraz, you might be on to something. Perhaps in the Firefly Universe there exist a cluster of solar systems connected via a series of multiple wormholes.

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Wednesday, December 29, 2004 4:27 PM

JUJANSIN


Grounded, look a little more closely at what I wrote. I theorized that because the crew of Serenity are not hesitant to stop to investigate derelicts and such, yet their travel would require high speed, they probably use a non-inertial drive, that is, a drive that displaces the ship without giving it velocity. Thus, such a drive could be assumed to require constant input of energy.

If they used an inertial drive that accelerated them, they would be hesitant to stop because it would require fuel to do so, then to get up to speed again.

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Thursday, December 30, 2004 7:55 AM

WYDRAZ


Quote:

Originally posted by Conscience:
[BWydraz, you might be on to something. Perhaps in the Firefly Universe there exist a cluster of solar systems connected via a series of multiple wormholes.



Exactly. After all, no one can say that ALL star systems aren't connected in such a way. Who knows what forces might be swirling about where solar energy meets cosmic energy? A scifi setting like Firefly can make this assumption until we actually are able to prove otherwise -- e.g. sending a probe out to the edge of our system and mapping the entire sphere -- and that could be a while!



Oh, and play Strange Adventures in Infinite Space. http://digital-eel.com/sais

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Thursday, December 30, 2004 9:15 AM

NEUTRINOLAD


Book sez:

"After the Earth was used up we found a new solar system and hundreds of new Earths were terraformed and colonized. The central planets formed the Alliance and decided all the planets had to join under their rule. There was some disagreement on that point. After the war, many of the independents who fought and lost drifted to the edges of the system, far from Alliance control. Out here, people struggle to get by with the most basic technologies. A ship would bring you work, a gun would help you keep it. A captain's goal was simple; Find a crew, find a job, keep flying."

- transcription of Book's prologue from televised Firefly.

So that settles that, I guess.

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Thursday, December 30, 2004 12:14 PM

GROUNDED


Quote:

Originally posted by Jujansin:
Grounded, look a little more closely at what I wrote. I theorized that because the crew of Serenity are not hesitant to stop to investigate derelicts and such, yet their travel would require high speed, they probably use a non-inertial drive, that is, a drive that displaces the ship without giving it velocity. Thus, such a drive could be assumed to require constant input of energy.

If they used an inertial drive that accelerated them, they would be hesitant to stop because it would require fuel to do so, then to get up to speed again.



I don't think the imagery used on the show is consistent with anything other than classical fuel-based propulsion.

Having said that, I would say there is no complete scientific description of the Firefly universe, mainly due to the fact that Joss doesn't care enough about these kind of details to include them. Which, I suppose, is fair play.

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Thursday, December 30, 2004 4:12 PM

JUJANSIN


Well, Grounded, I see your point concerning the visuals. The engine certainly looks like it is ejecting some reaction mass when operating, but after thinking about the other observed properties, it seems more likely to me that that effect is simply a side effect or somesuch. I still see a non-inertial drive as the only explanation so far for Serenity's capabilities and behaviour.

As to these explanations being unnecessary, I also understand where you're coming from, and in the large majority of cases, a predetermined or canonized explanation of how the ship and how technologies behave is not necessary. Once, however, a writer begins creating stories with the assumed capabilities of the ship and technologies as a central premise, he needs to have a cohesive model for, if not how things work, what they do. Otherwise, eventually, a writer will probably write himself into a corner. Joss has avoided this well for the most part, but when you're doing any kind of fiction that involves technologies or phenomena that we do not have today, it's always helpful to establish a model for how things operate.

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Friday, December 31, 2004 4:27 AM

GROUNDED


Did you see the link someone posted to the Joss interview? He basically said no FTL and single system - so why do we need to invent new drives?

An explanation for Serenity's capabilities and behaviour is that the writer's thought certain things would be a) good for the story or b) cool looking. It seems likely they didn't know certain things would contradict or rule out different modes of propulsion.

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Friday, December 31, 2004 8:36 AM

JUJANSIN


Quote:

Originally posted by Grounded:
Did you see the link someone posted to the Joss interview? He basically said no FTL and single system - so why do we need to invent new drives?



Well, Joss' comments seemed, to me, to be very ambiguous and unsure. I can understand that he doesn't want to deal with the nitty-gritty of the 'verse's setup, but my point stands that a coherent and rational explanation for the setting is an extremely good thing to have. And a single star system, unless it contradicts pretty much everything we know about planet formation, cannot support ~70 1G planets in the habitable range. So because, in my mind, it simply cannot be in a single star system, some form of non-reaction-mass (i.e. convetional) propulsion must exist to allow for the extremely high speeds required to get around. (Don't make me bring out the math! )

Quote:

Originally posted by Grounded:
An explanation for Serenity's capabilities and behaviour is that the writer's thought certain things would be a) good for the story or b) cool looking. It seems likely they didn't know certain things would contradict or rule out different modes of propulsion.



Hey, I'm as much for making things cool and interesting as the next person. But if you have writers deciding how things work solely based on what they want for a particular story or event, eventually they're going to seriously contradict themselves, and that is definitely not cool. It hurts the all-important suspension of disbelief.

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Friday, December 31, 2004 9:21 AM

CONSCIENCE


Quote:

Originally posted by Jujansin:
And a single star system, unless it contradicts pretty much everything we know about planet formation, cannot support ~70 1G planets in the habitable range.



But you're forgetting one thing Jujansin, terraforming. We know that terraforming was used to make the planets habitable. With terraforming involved, being within the habitable range (i.e. distance from the sun) doesn't matter. They can simply use certain technology to make the planets habitable regardless of where they are in a system.

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Friday, December 31, 2004 2:18 PM

JUJANSIN


Quote:

Originally posted by Conscience:
Quote:

Originally posted by Jujansin:
And a single star system, unless it contradicts pretty much everything we know about planet formation, cannot support ~70 1G planets in the habitable range.



But you're forgetting one thing Jujansin, terraforming. We know that terraforming was used to make the planets habitable. With terraforming involved, being within the habitable range (i.e. distance from the sun) doesn't matter. They can simply use certain technology to make the planets habitable regardless of where they are in a system.



Well, I'm assuming that they have some pretty powerful terraforming tools, and could convert anything, a planet or a moon, from slightly inside what would be Venus' orbit to something roughly near Saturn into a habitable world. Any closer in or farther out, it doesn't matter how good your technology is, there's just the wrong amount of heat; you reach a point where nothing that would allow human habitation can be effectively used. However, that many (~70) worlds of approximately 1-gravity size probably would not occur even in that very generous margin in a single system. Of course, we don't know everything about planet formation, but I doubt that that many rocky planets would form in such incredible density.

Still, I can see the argument from both sides, and I'm a lot more ambivalent than I was before. Now we just need Joss to have one of his minions figure out how it works to satisfy our compusive fannish curiosity!

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Friday, December 31, 2004 2:31 PM

GROUNDED


I don't think there is "a coherent and rational explanation". I don't think there was an attempt to conceive one beforehand and so we end up with what we have - a mish-mash of 'heights' of technology and a bunch of vague distances and timescales. Even if the series had continued I don't think they'd have established a model - I suspect it would have been more like Star Trek, in which science is bent to shape the plot.

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Saturday, January 1, 2005 7:59 AM

JUJANSIN


Quote:

Originally posted by Grounded:
I don't think there is "a coherent and rational explanation". I don't think there was an attempt to conceive one beforehand and so we end up with what we have - a mish-mash of 'heights' of technology and a bunch of vague distances and timescales. Even if the series had continued I don't think they'd have established a model - I suspect it would have been more like Star Trek, in which science is bent to shape the plot.



You're right, they probably didn't think about it. It'd just be kind of nice, though, to have an explanation, so that, in addition to being a hopelessly obsessed fan, is why I'm theorizing and hypothesizing (could I be so vain as to imagine that the people involved with Serenity read these boards?). I just think that an explanation would make it feel more real, that's all. And lastly, why would we want to make our beloved 'verse at all like Star Trek? (or at least not like Enterprise!)

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Saturday, January 1, 2005 12:43 PM

GROUNDED


Of course we wouldn't want it to be like Trek in the tech respect, but I think that's what would have happened.

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Tuesday, January 4, 2005 2:53 PM

YT

the movie is not the Series. Only the facts have been changed, to irritate the innocent; the names of the actors and characters remain the same


Quote:

Originally posted by Jiltedtoo:
Even a planet with the orbit of Mars, would be darker at the equator then the earth.JT


Measureably, to a photocell? Well, sure but, noon on a tropical beach in summer is about a hundred times brighter than a well-lit room. Noon on a tropical beach on Mars would be about forty times as bright as a well-lit room.

Your irises will adjust.

Keep the Shiny Side Up

Wutzon: Bonnie Raitt, "I Can't Help You Now"

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Wednesday, January 5, 2005 8:09 AM

XENOCIDE


Jujansin:

I think we're leaving something important out of the terafforming equation. Your leaving out the gravity technolgy. Serenity generated 1G when she was dead in the air during Out of Gas. If you can make any rock in the 'verse function at one G than it would be easy to terrafor 70+ bodies in the habitible range. What's more gravitiational fields could be used to focus or redirect solar energy outside the area we think of as habitable.

If gravity is a cheap commodity but FTL is unavailable then a single system and a fusion engine do just fine!

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Wednesday, January 5, 2005 11:14 AM

WYDRAZ


I think JUJANSIN has the best thoery so far.

I still hold that one of the biggest flaws of the idea of One System is that there are other systems nearby... and well, it's just silly to leave all that expanse untouched!

If you've got the tech to leave the Solar system, why would you put all your eggs in one basket and colonize only one other star system? If you have the means, why not exploit it?

Remeber the episode with the shadow puppetry showing the ships flying off in all directions? Not just one direction... all directions. Even without FTL, there are bound to be other star systems colonized in the FF universe.

On top of that, if you can manipulate gravity to the extent that it seems, it's not a huge leap of faith to assume that FTL does exist. Joss doesn't sound too sure about Serenity having FTL... but that doesn't mean other ships don't.

Another thing... the "verse" isn't the universe unless you're talking about more than just one star system...



Oh, and play Strange Adventures in Infinite Space. http://digital-eel.com/sais

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Sunday, January 9, 2005 4:49 PM

JUJANSIN


Well, Xenocide, although a 1G gravitaional field for a small ship does not amount to a whole lot of energy, the generation of a 1G field for a whole planet or moonlet would require, in a conservative estimate, about 17 zillion assloads of energy. And even if humans could create such a gravitational field, they would not create it on a barren rock of a planet where there would be nearly nobody to take advantage of it(e.g. Whitefall). The only other way I see of creating that artificial gravity would be some sort of ultradense material, or regional gravitational generators. But still, those would take amounts of energy enormously disproportionate to the level and size of civilization. I'm certain that the Alliance would want better returns on its investment, colonization-wise.

And responding to Wydraz's post, thanks for the vote of confidence. Another idea, perhaps, that could allow for a fairly high concentration of 1G planets in a single system: a number of big gas giants, say, three or four, with hordes of moons, many of them appropriate for terraforming, then maybe a few free planets. That setup might conceivably hold perhaps twenty or more worlds in one system, and allow for a fairly big system for Serenity to kick around in. And if it is the case that there is no FTL, I have actually done the calculations, and yes, with a fusion engine with only, say, 0.5% mass-to-thrust conversion efficiency, just a few kilograms of reaction mass would be enough to get Serenity around a single system easily within the timeframes discussed.

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Sunday, January 9, 2005 6:03 PM

PBI


I have to agree with Grounded. It seems that Joss only fleshed only the detail required to drive the plot, and that only loosely. Which is fine, as it leaves things open for development later. The thing is, I think folks are taking the voiceover's a bit too literally, especially with this being Joss. When Book talks about find a new solar system and colonizing hundred of new Earths, that could also be a very broad, quick and dirty summation of history. Maybe they found a new system, which was the first Core planet, then spread out from there, to other, nearby systems in the local neighbourhood. Similarly, when Book speaks of the defeated Indies moving to the edge of the system, is he speaking literally, or referring to moving to the fringes (literally and figuratively) of the new political system?

If you can survive death, you can probably survive almost anything.

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Monday, January 10, 2005 5:52 AM

GAVIDA


I am not in the "no-FTL"-Camp , but I think so far all the episodes took place in one solar system, we only saw a small fraction of the terraformed planets in the show.

I did put some thought into the solar system(s), the 'verse, the many moons and planets and the non-mentioning of FTL when I watched the show for the third or fourth time, discussing it with a friend.

Here is my theory:

There is FTL in the Firefly-'verse.
But only PDL (pretty damn large) ships, kind of carrierlike can perform FTL travel. It is expensive, the costs for fuel and energy are enormous, so there is a steep fare for ships that want to dock and do a FTL-travel.
As we all know, our BDHs aren't among the wealthiest, so they can not pay for a FTL-Ticket on an interstellar carrier (not at the time of the episodes, though )

This theory would put the "86 million miles" comment from the HOB-guy into the right perspective again as well, since it still would be quite some distance to travel with one of the ships that are only capable of sublight travel (I would call them "Innersystem Ships" or something like that)

Innersystem Ships travel fast, but they still need some of time to travel through a solar system.

Interstellar Ships that travel FTL could be too big to go into the systems themselves because of the gravity of the planets and moons, they need to stay in an orbit around the sun outside the outermost planet.

So for interstellar travel to one of the other systems you would need a fast Innersystem Ship that still needs quite some time to travel to the Interstellar Carrier, this means: Fuel to burn, food and water for the travel, fees for the transport to the other systems, again Fuel to burn to go to the new system, food and water again for the time needed.

Pretty expensive, I would bet. Not something a bunch of people who can not even buy all the spare parts needed to have them in the case of an emergengy could afford.

And if those interstellar travel routes are under Alliance control (and I bet they are) it would probably require a lot of papers and permits, hehe.

This is only my idea of course and if anyone sees to blatant flaws in it, please let me know

But for now I see it as as much a possible 'verse as having Serenity flying FTL or everything in one solar system

Keep flying,
Gavida

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Monday, January 10, 2005 7:01 AM

XENOCIDE


Jujansin wrote:

Well, Xenocide, although a 1G gravitaional field for a small ship does not amount to a whole lot of energy, the generation of a 1G field for a whole planet or moonlet would require, in a conservative estimate, about 17 zillion assloads of energy.


Jajansin, In OoG serenity gave gravity on batteries alone. When she couldn't support life she still had workable G. I like the superheavy metal theory, but if G costs nothing on a starship (a cheap one at that) well... to quote jane: nothing times nothing is... nothing.

And even if humans could create such a gravitational field, they would not create it on a barren rock of a planet where there would be nearly nobody to take advantage of it(e.g. Whitefall). ...But still, those would take amounts of energy enormously disproportionate to the level and size of civilization. I'm certain that the Alliance would want better returns on its investment, colonization-wise.

Well, I don't know much about theoretical physics, but I know some history and some politics. Historically exploration and colonization have been REALLY espensive. Why do you think the Brits were miffed about the american revolution? We were just barely becoming profitable! Columbus' and Magellan's expeditions were not cheap either, but they brought huge future returns. Spain became the wealthiest of nations because of Columbus. My point is places like whitefall are long term investments. Governments will make those kinds of investments even when they are not immediately profitable. And that is assuming that G costs assloads.

So in one system, with some gas giants, an ass load of moons and some other small to moderately sized bodies with generated G and outer planets heated with gravitic lenses and impressive greenhouse effects 70 'worlds' (70 was the rough number from earlier in the thread) seems plausible. I think FTL might fit in the universe for Alliance cruisers and such. This might even explain their sparse appearance in the show. They might be tending other solar systems.
I just don't think serenity has anything faster than Fusion.

-Eli

If voting mattered, they'd make it illegal.

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Monday, January 10, 2005 8:12 AM

PBI


I've always thought that the ships we've seen, with the possible exception of the Alliance cruisers, have been sublight ships, also. That would explain why a single Alliance cruiser would have such a huge patrol area, and why they hadn't crushed all opposition, because if it realy is/was one big system, we should have been seeing clouds of Alliance ships.

If you can survive death, you can probably survive almost anything.

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Monday, January 10, 2005 10:51 AM

IMEARLY


I am very new to this site, and have been enjoying this post; however there is something that has been forgotten. I have here, the answer to our problem...

The closest star system to our own is the Alpha Centauri system, Proxima Centauri, Alpha Centauri A and Alpha Centauri B. they are approximately 4.36 light years or 1,536,605,000 miles away.
A Light year measured in miles is 669,600,000. If there were a massive tragedy today and we were forced to leave our planet to find another suitable system to colonize, we could only travel at a maximum of 17,500 miles per hour (This is the maximum speed of the space shuttle in space) at this speed it would take 87,806 YEARS to reach the Alpha Centauri system. FTL is not only a possibility in Firefly it is (fictionally speaking) a fact. This being said, with the ability to travel faster than light, there must then be colonies that stretch multiple star systems.


So you're a bounty hunter.
No, that ain't it at all.
Then what are you?
I'm a bounty hunter.

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Monday, January 10, 2005 11:27 AM

JUJANSIN


Quote:

Originally posted by xenocide:
Jujansin wrote:

Well, Xenocide, although a 1G gravitaional field for a small ship does not amount to a whole lot of energy, the generation of a 1G field for a whole planet or moonlet would require, in a conservative estimate, about 17 zillion assloads of energy.


Jajansin, In OoG serenity gave gravity on batteries alone. When she couldn't support life she still had workable G. I like the superheavy metal theory, but if G costs nothing on a starship (a cheap one at that) well... to quote jane: nothing times nothing is... nothing.



While free gravity would be really nice, there's just no getting around the first law of thermodynamics, i.e. conservation of energy. You need to spend energy to exert a force on objects. And that means large gravitic fields would require colossal fusion reactors and a lot of fuel. In physics, there is no free lunch.

But in any case, if Joss said that it was in one big system, I would be fine with that. I mean, if humans had to leave the Sol system for a new one, I expect that they would use their telescopes and say: "Hey, that star has an insanely dense planetary cluster around it! Let's go there."

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Monday, January 10, 2005 12:49 PM

GROUNDED


Quote:

Originally posted by ImEarly:
we could only travel at a maximum of 17,500 miles per hour (This is the maximum speed of the space shuttle in space)



You're assuming that no technological advances were made before departing Earth, which by your own argument is not likely.

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Monday, January 10, 2005 1:22 PM

IMEARLY


Quote:

Originally posted by Grounded:
Quote:

You're assuming that no technological advances were made before departing Earth, which by your own argument is not likely.



One problem here. Firefly is placed 500 years in the future. Considering technology now, and the short time (500 years is not very long in terms of the cosmos, and human development) Thus technological advancements must be made to increase our ability to travel faster in space by 'A LOT' also there is the time needed to build transports capable of transporting earths population, time to transport these people from A to B plus, time for Terraforming and colonizing, time for Reavers to travel to the edge of the universe-and return... time for the war... Therefore my above post must be accurate.

So you're a bounty hunter.
No, that ain't it at all.
Then what are you?
I'm a bounty hunter.

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Tuesday, January 11, 2005 1:27 AM

GROUNDED


Quote:

Originally posted by ImEarly:
500 years is not very long in terms of...human development



Are you kidding? Look at the advances made in the last hundred years, even the last fifty.

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Tuesday, January 11, 2005 3:21 AM

IMEARLY


No, I'm not kidding, and also I was simply using Alpha Centauri system as a reference, you must also calculate that the closest star to us aside from this is the Bernard's star, which is 6.0 light years away, Wolf 359 7.7, the numbers get greater from there my friend. These are massive distances, and these systems can be seen quite clearly by today’s technology, to appease fans I'm certain when Firefly has been rightfully reestablished, that the writers will use systems dozens of light years away, that without FTL will be impossible for the human race, regardless of sub light technology, to reach. Obviously Serenity does not have the ability to generate FTL (as you can actually see them departing a location during the 'firefly effect') however it does not mean that the ability is not there in the Universe of Firefly. I imagine that eventually the writers will develop a FTL system that is NOT like Star Trek or Star Gate, something new, something we can all agree on without resorting to cliché Science Fiction.

So you're a bounty hunter.
No, that ain't it at all.
Then what are you?
I'm a bounty hunter.

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Tuesday, January 11, 2005 7:41 AM

GROUNDED


That's not what I meant.

You're claiming that since the star systems are so far away, the Firefly universe necessitates FTL. Suppose then that a drive was built that could manage, say, 0.25c. Ignoring acceleration/deceleration periods, it would take at least 4 times as long to reach Barnard's Star as a ship going at c or greater. So what? Very long journey times would not necessarily matter for a sleeper ship. You send out a hulk full of frozen sleepers (perhaps even an automated facility to artificially produce humans once it gets there), it takes them many decades to reach their destination, but then they can begin colonising local space fairly quickly in comparison. Many genre stories have created realistic scenarios for near-future colonisation of neighbouring systems without FTL anywhere in sight.

Furthermore, you said that it's unlikely technological developments could take place before leaving Earth that would allow non-FTL travel to nearby systems. If they can't develop new non-FTL travel in that time period, what makes you think they could develop FTL?

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