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Made in gb
Regular Dakkanaut







I've noticed that in a lot of sci fi miniature games and sci fi as a broader existence nearly always has mars as an industrial world, that makes the finest weapons. Is there some sort of reason for this such as it is the closest planet to earth, or is it just something that happens as the writers don't think of anything else.

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Made in ca
Dipping With Wood Stain




t.dot

I'd imagine that the Moon and Mars act as "first steps" in humanity's outward colonialization of the stars. And because Earth is finite in its resources, the Moon and Mars are logically the next source.

Whether it's weapons or not, some manner of industrialization must occur to provide the necessary materiels for us to continue our journey onwards. Of course, once we develop something akin to FTL engines/hyperspeed/warp travel/etc., well, these worlds already have the industrial facilities for manufacturing. No reason to let them go to waste.

This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2019/05/14 20:04:58


   
Made in us
Fresh-Faced New User





A bit of both; it's named for the Roman war god.
Scifi culture tends to self-reference, borrowing tropes from existing film/games/literature without understanding the origin of them.
And I'm sure Kim Stanley Robinson's "Mars" trilogy influenced quite a bit for the last few decades.

Regardless of having read that it makes sense:
Mars is probably the next habitable planet for human advancement. Venus and Mercury are death worlds, the others are too far with convention propulsion to reliably reach and sustain a colony. Ignoring FTL/transhumanism, any initial colonies on Mars needing to be as self-sufficient and efficient with local resources, using them to their fullest.
Due to the likelihood of Earth being the primary beneficiary to the resources extracted, possible cosmic events cutting them off from Earth, and/or eventuality seeking independence from crushing Earth demands. In order to survive people have to get good with sustaining an ecosystem, energy usage, improving transportation methods, etc. Hence various leaps in technological knowhow.

   
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Fixture of Dakka






 deotrims 16th wrote:
I've noticed that in a lot of sci fi miniature games and sci fi as a broader existence nearly always has mars as an industrial world, that makes the finest weapons. Is there some sort of reason for this such as it is the closest planet to earth, or is it just something that happens as the writers don't think of anything else.


What are the other examples, other than 40k? I'm trying to think, now, of games where Mars has a significantly different society to earth or other human worlds, and I'm drawing a blank.
   
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I guess there's also the assumption it's Iron Rich, given it's the red planet - and where rocks are red on Earth, its a sign of high iron content.

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UK

A few thoughts

1) Resources on any planet are Finite and in many futures Earth is considered either totally stripped or stripped of economically viable resources in abundance.

2) Future settings often show Earth as aiming toward a conservation target. So things like heavy industry are discouraged and come with significant increased costs to deal with pollutant production; whilst resource extraction is more limited again for similar reasons.
Sometimes its shown as a beautiful central world that reaps the benefits of off-world production.

3) Mars has no natural flora nor fauna and has potentially large amounts of untapped resources. So the idea of it becoming a heavy industry world because isn't too far fetched. Indeed with no atmosphere that is breathable air pollution might not be as much of an issue at all since people would already be living within air tight environments.

4) Any investment in offworld is going to come with a steep demand for resources and materials and its not economical to build huge cities by transporting materials from Earth to Mars. So any colony would ideally be small and focus on finding and extracting resources to further itself.
This woudl also help to start to recoup the investment by sending those resources (in time) back to earth or other developments.


In short Mars is an ideal planet for potential major industrial extraction and production; whilst those resources are also tangible and easily in demand on a resource dwindling (and ever hungrier for more resources) setting. So yep Mars becoming a big industrial world is a very potential future. Plus if it started on heavy industry and if Earth moved more and more of it to Mars and new means of gaining space and space travel allowed for more efficient movement of resources between worlds - then yep there's every reason to consider mars as the future industrual gem.




OF course many sci-fi settings also go further to a situation a bit like the early days of the American Colonies and England; whereby Mars rises to power and wants to break ties and tithe to a home world that is only bleeding off resources. Mars having then established itself with generations of peoples who are Mars and not Earth born and bred. Indeed such a setting is often used for sci-fi shows and stories.

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Rzhev

I've always just viewed as another little ode to the odiousness of capitalism and the NIMBYism inherent to capitalists.

Mars is to Earth as Taiwan is to the United States.

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It's not even capitalism really its just recouping investment - same thing we did all the way back to being hunter-gatherers. You'd move to new regions to access resources.


We know that mars has resources, it would be nuts not to tap into them; and with no viable functional ecosystem using it as a heavy industrial site just makes good logical sense provided that you can overcome the transportation issues between Mars and Earth.


I suspect it wouldn't happen unless we found a new fuel/engine to take off with rockets or built space elevators. That way resources would travel up and down elevators on both worlds whilst ships could transport between them.

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Rzhev

Liking digging metal out of the ground in Africa, shipping it to China to make it into things and then shipping it to Canada?

Dat efficient allocation of resources, tho.

Your theory makes a certain amount of sense in regards to refineries, mines etc. Not so much with manufacturing.

We ship the dirty things our society absolutely depends on off to the other side of the world to poison Chinese kids. Like we used to ship them off to the slums in Victorian England to poison the inhabitants. "What would be a nuisance in Belgrave Square would not necessarily be so in Bermondsey". Sturges v Bridgman (1879) LR 11 Ch D 852

I always figured the Mars thing was a nod to that.

The Fall of Kronstaat IV
Война Народная | Voyna Narodnaya | The People's War - 2,898pts painted (updated 18/09/19)
Волшебная Сказка | Volshebnaya Skazka | A Fairy Tale (updated 07/10/19, ep9 - Разорение | Razoreniye | Downfall)
Kabal of The Violet Heart (updated 18/09/19)

You know, if there's one thing I've learnt from being in the Army, it's never ignore a pooh-pooh. I knew a Major who got pooh-poohed; made the mistake of ignoring the pooh-pooh. He pooh-poohed it! Fatal error! 'Cause it turned out all along that the soldier who pooh-poohed him had been pooh-poohing a lot of other officers who pooh-poohed their pooh-poohs. In the end, we had to disband the regiment.
 
   
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Netherlands

In Asimov's work it's actually Mercury. Due to the extreme sunlight there is always an abundance of energy, and its rivers of molten metals can be put to good use in industry.

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In reality, it would likely be the asteroid belt, where millions of tons of raw material are literally just floating around in the open.

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The asteroid belt is pretty sparse though. Having a planet to work on is convenient in many ways.

Please excuse any spelling errors. I use a tablet frequently and software keyboards are a pain!

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 Flinty wrote:
The asteroid belt is pretty sparse though. Having a planet to work on is convenient in many ways.


Not having to lift stuff out of a gravity well is even more convenient. Not to mention avoiding the fuel costs of doing so are huge, so manufacturing stuff for interplanetary export in zero-g is vastly more economical.

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Bristol

 Vulcan wrote:
 Flinty wrote:
The asteroid belt is pretty sparse though. Having a planet to work on is convenient in many ways.


Not having to lift stuff out of a gravity well is even more convenient. Not to mention avoiding the fuel costs of doing so are huge, so manufacturing stuff for interplanetary export in zero-g is vastly more economical.


Sure, if you ignore the delta-v required to get to the asteroid belt, the complexity of setting up rendezvous with small objects in space compared to large objects with strong gravitational fields, the difficulty in performing repairs etc.

Building parts in an environment without any of these issues (such as Earth) and then assembly in orbit around Earth (or the moon) makes much more sense.

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Turns out getting around in space is hard. Who'dda thunk it?

Maybe drone rockets sent out into the belt to hurl rocks back to be captured by orbital facilities around Mars. The gravity well is a big pain, since Mars isn't know for their rocket fuel refineries, and we haven't developed a better lift technology yet.

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 A Town Called Malus wrote:
 Vulcan wrote:
 Flinty wrote:
The asteroid belt is pretty sparse though. Having a planet to work on is convenient in many ways.


Not having to lift stuff out of a gravity well is even more convenient. Not to mention avoiding the fuel costs of doing so are huge, so manufacturing stuff for interplanetary export in zero-g is vastly more economical.


Sure, if you ignore the delta-v required to get to the asteroid belt, the complexity of setting up rendezvous with small objects in space compared to large objects with strong gravitational fields, the difficulty in performing repairs etc.

Building parts in an environment without any of these issues (such as Earth) and then assembly in orbit around Earth (or the moon) makes much more sense.


Except then you're still burning hundreds of pounds of rocket fuel to lift one pound of parts into orbit. It's never going to be economical for export that way.

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 Vulcan wrote:

Except then you're still burning hundreds of pounds of rocket fuel to lift one pound of parts into orbit. It's never going to be economical for export that way.


By the time we can adequately exploit Mars, you can probably build an orbital elevator (in the lower gravity) powered by fusion reactors, so getting stuff into orbit isn't that expensive. Also, if you have fusion reactors, making rocket fuel isn't terribly difficult. Or they could just launch stuff upward from Olympus Mons via rail cannon(s). Point is, it's easier to get stuff off Mars than Earth, and Mars has a lot of materials worth launching into space to build starships and colony cylinders. We're not sure how well we can manufacture a lot of things in free fall, but making stuff in Mars' lower gravity should be no real problem, then launch it upwards for final assembly in orbit.

Nothing to stop asteroid capture and exploitation either, especially if free fall manufacture isn't problematic, but there's a lot of material on Mars and no good reason to ignore it if humans have access to cheap abundant energy.

   
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Once you have fusion power, superheated steam is the obvious reaction mass as it's quite common. For example, the rings of Saturn alone have vast tonnages of water ready and waiting... and in zero-g no less.

Also makes it child's play to move stuff around in the Belt...

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I think R&D potential in mars is why... If you think about it, it would make sense that mad experiments will be happening on mars because we don't want them happening on earth but there's lots of space and resources to play with. We'd want that over there in case we end ourselves with some sort of T-virus/mini black hole implosion.

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 Vulcan wrote:
Once you have fusion power, superheated steam is the obvious reaction mass as it's quite common. For example, the rings of Saturn alone have vast tonnages of water ready and waiting... and in zero-g no less.

Also makes it child's play to move stuff around in the Belt...


You don't need fusion for that. Direct injection Fission Drives (open reactor drives) can superheat any material into plasma. Radiation is not an issue in space and no, you cannot pollute space with radiation. The plasma trail generated by an atomic rocket is about as dangerous as the plasma trail from a comet (read, extremely dangerous). Flying through the plasma trail of a comet will cook a human.

The only reason we dont have atomic rockets right now is the Cold War treaties and the general skittishness of launching large amounts of radioactive materials all at once into space and risk of accidental release in case of a launch failure (still very common). Though NASA built a few containers for them that could withstand rocket detonation (scuttling) still there is always SOME risk.


The ideal atomic rocket or torch type ship is a shielded open core fission reactor with the exhaust nozzle being the unshielded part. Radiation doesn't turn corners so putting the rocket exhaust in the right place would protect the crew. Fully capable on very little fuel doing a 1G trp to Mars and a 2G decel orbital injection.

Again, there are only two reasons why we don't already use atomic rockets. The only nations capable of building such a drive are part of certain space treaties from the cold war and the general social (read crazy tree huggers) push back against atomic power in space. My personal favorite was when NASA was about to launch a very nice atomic powerplant they were forced to not by the environazis who screamed about polluting space. There is ridiculous then there is that level of abject moronic stupidity.

Atomic Rockets could take us to the outer planets pretty easily. They just wouldn't really be usable in low orbit or for take off and landing but rather only for interplanetary travel. There is a risk of radiation so one DOES have to account for it.. but here is a pro-tip... Fusion creates radiation too.. in fact most super-excited plasmas will kick out Gamma Particles. Lighting creates a powerful gamma burst every time it happens.

The only real advantage to Fusion is greater heat and lack (depending on what we are fusing) of persistent radiation risk after it's turned off. While it's on it will spill out immense radiation but turn it off and in general you won't be that "hot" vs the fission's very "hot" byproducts.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2019/05/20 14:59:55


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meatybtz wrote:

The only real advantage to Fusion is greater heat and lack (depending on what we are fusing) of persistent radiation risk after it's turned off. While it's on it will spill out immense radiation but turn it off and in general you won't be that "hot" vs the fission's very "hot" byproducts.


Your engine core will end up being radioactive, but it's nothing you can't bury behind several feet of concrete once you're done with it - it's a chunk of radioactive steel/etc, not a pile of uranium byproducts.

   
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A new day, a new time zone.

Comets don't have 'plasma trails.' Where did that nonsense.come from?

Comet tails are gas and dust, released.when the cometary ice starts recieving enough sunlight to melt. Since in a vacuum, the transition from solid to gas mostly skips the liquid state, you're not even dealing with particularly hot gas. And that's for water ice. If it's ammonia, the melting point there is about -80C.

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 Bookwrack wrote:
Comets don't have 'plasma trails.' Where did that nonsense.come from?

Comet tails are gas and dust, released.when the cometary ice starts recieving enough sunlight to melt. Since in a vacuum, the transition from solid to gas mostly skips the liquid state, you're not even dealing with particularly hot gas. And that's for water ice. If it's ammonia, the melting point there is about -80C.


LOL, they most certainly DO have plasma tails. They are often called ION tails, but IONIZED gasses are plasmas and flying through one will do serious damage to people and equipment. There are many temperatures of plasmas. They are not all super hot, but they are all fully ionized. In fact all comets have two tails. One gas and dust, the other ionized gas.


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 John Prins wrote:
meatybtz wrote:

The only real advantage to Fusion is greater heat and lack (depending on what we are fusing) of persistent radiation risk after it's turned off. While it's on it will spill out immense radiation but turn it off and in general you won't be that "hot" vs the fission's very "hot" byproducts.


Your engine core will end up being radioactive, but it's nothing you can't bury behind several feet of concrete once you're done with it - it's a chunk of radioactive steel/etc, not a pile of uranium byproducts.


Yeah the Uranium byproducts are really bad. The Fusion Core's radioactivity is not nearly on the same level of dangerous as the Uranium Byproducts. Most Uranium Byproducts are extremely dangerous to humans. Not just from radiation but from a heavy metals and reactivity/chemistry replacement perspective.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2019/05/20 18:13:40


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Its where they make they make the finest miniatures too. No way they make minis that good here on ol'errfff...

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To help introduce people to atomic rockets.

Point of fact, there is a very good chance that we could have landed men on Mars in the late 60s if we had pursued these technologies. Remember that men launched and landed on the moon with less computer and general tech than you have in your home.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2019/05/21 01:05:09


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meatybtz wrote:


Remember that men launched and landed on the moon with less computer and general tech than you have in your home.


Apparently it was about the computing power of two C64s. Incredible and scary at the same time!

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Bristol

SamusDrake wrote:
meatybtz wrote:


Remember that men launched and landed on the moon with less computer and general tech than you have in your home.


Apparently it was about the computing power of two C64s. Incredible and scary at the same time!


Fun fact, the Apollo Guidance Computer was the first computer (or definitely among the first) that could rank the importance of tasks given to it and drop non-essential tasks to free up processing capacity to complete essential tasks, rather than dropping the previous tasks and working on the new one. This happened during the landing of Apollo 11, where Aldrin called for a DELTAH (difference between height measured by radar and the computed height) routine which took the computer over its processing capacity. It threw up an error, cancelled tasks which were non-essential (including the DELTAH task) and carried on doing its thing.

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Thats quite an advanced task for a computer back then, especially as the C language was still 2-3 years away from being invented.

Thankfully the machines were very limited back then so keeping check of memory contents was quite manageable - especially when they had the top minds at Nasa to call upon.


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