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A new idea for sandcasters...

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Re: A new idea for sandcasters...
Post by kzt   » Fri Jun 28, 2019 10:05 am

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JohnRoth wrote:I wonder if anyone has suggested using a gazillion tiny radar corners tuned to the frequencies in a graser?

If it worked, it would shoot a fairly large proportion of the graser's energy right back at the source.

Graser doesn’t interact with the surface of a target. It interacts with the interior. The mean free path length is a probability function based on the energy of the graser and the characteristics of the target.

Basically the defense against a graser is lots of mass and depth of material that interacts highly with gamma rays. Combined with enough spaces so the hypersonic shock waves it induces don’t tear you apart.
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Re: A new idea for sandcasters...
Post by JohnRoth   » Fri Jun 28, 2019 2:22 pm

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But it has to go through the surface, surely? Or have i missed another place where RFC is playing fast and loose with the laws of physics?

And I thought I mentioned something that increases the interaction probability significantly.
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Re: A new idea for sandcasters...
Post by Jonathan_S   » Fri Jun 28, 2019 3:14 pm

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JohnRoth wrote:But it has to go through the surface, surely? Or have i missed another place where RFC is playing fast and loose with the laws of physics?

And I thought I mentioned something that increases the interaction probability significantly.

Well they're basically quite high energy x-rays. X-rays, unlike light or radar waves doesn't tend to reflect - instead it tends to penetrate and if stopped become absorbed (as heat) rather than bouncing back. (And when you're pushing giga to exawatts of power that internal heating tends to explosively deconstruct the material being penetrated.

You can build mirrors for x-rays but they only work at very shallow angles. Put one anywhere near the 45 to 90 degree impact angles of a corner reflector and the x-ray will penetrate the mirror instead of reflecting.


So this isn't RFC playing fast and loose with the laws of physics. This is the real world physics of x-rays being very different from those of radar or visible light.
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Re: A new idea for sandcasters...
Post by kzt   » Fri Jun 28, 2019 3:29 pm

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There is a fascinating essay published in one of the collections that was written by one of the Bu9 guys that talks about the mechanics of honorverse energy weapons. Iirc, the guy who wrote that is a physicist who works for the US navy in the nuke field or lasers.

The energy level of honorverse weapons, especially graser’s, is absurdly high. They are insanely destructive.

"An Introduction to Modern Starship Armor Design" is the essay.
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Re: A new idea for sandcasters...
Post by Galactic Sapper   » Sat Jun 29, 2019 12:34 pm

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kzt wrote:There is a fascinating essay published in one of the collections that was written by one of the Bu9 guys that talks about the mechanics of honorverse energy weapons. Iirc, the guy who wrote that is a physicist who works for the US navy in the nuke field or lasers.

The energy level of honorverse weapons, especially graser’s, is absurdly high. They are insanely destructive.

"An Introduction to Modern Starship Armor Design" is the essay.

One of the points that essay missed is that mirror facing won't work against laser heads. Doppler shifting from missiles that may be moving at anywhere from 0.1c to 0.85c relative to the target means there's not one fixed wavelength to guard against. Shipboard energy weapons could potentially be mitigated in that way, since the range of likely Doppler shifts is much narrower. Still, I'm not sure mirror facing could handle a 5-10% change in wavelength and retain any sort of functional protection.
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Re: A new idea for sandcasters...
Post by TFLYTSNBN   » Sat Jun 29, 2019 7:08 pm

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Given the technology of artificial gravity that can bend or attenuate light, it is likely that any screen of sand can be cleared.
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Re: A new idea for sandcasters...
Post by Loren Pechtel   » Sat Jul 06, 2019 5:28 pm

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TFLYTSNBN wrote:Given the technology of artificial gravity that can bend or attenuate light, it is likely that any screen of sand can be cleared.


But they can't project that gravity.
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Re: A new idea for sandcasters...
Post by Galactic Sapper   » Sat Jul 06, 2019 6:13 pm

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Loren Pechtel wrote:
TFLYTSNBN wrote:Given the technology of artificial gravity that can bend or attenuate light, it is likely that any screen of sand can be cleared.


But they can't project that gravity.

Easy enough to do with a modified countermissile (or larger if you need more range). Launch it, get it to just short of the sand field, then cut accel and tip the wedge to be at right angles to the line of flight. You get an area of cleared space the same dimensions of the massively oversized CM wedge.

Basically what the tugs did to debris from the space stations destroyed in the Yawata strike.

On second thought, it might be better to use actual ship killer missiles because they could tip back down after clearing the sand and still have a reasonable chance at performing an actual attack on the ship that launched the sand.
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Re: A new idea for sandcasters...
Post by Jonathan_S   » Sun Jul 07, 2019 8:33 pm

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Galactic Sapper wrote:But they can't project that gravity.

Easy enough to do with a modified countermissile (or larger if you need more range). Launch it, get it to just short of the sand field, then cut accel and tip the wedge to be at right angles to the line of flight. You get an area of cleared space the same dimensions of the massively oversized CM wedge.

Basically what the tugs did to debris from the space stations destroyed in the Yawata strike.

On second thought, it might be better to use actual ship killer missiles because they could tip back down after clearing the sand and still have a reasonable chance at performing an actual attack on the ship that launched the sand.[/quote]
You'd probably need to use a recon drone instead. You can't change acceleration on a missile's wedge after it's active. (According to a post here from RFC you can't even, yet, program a multi-drive missile with different accelerations for different drive stages)

A recon drone could cut accel, tip 90 degrees, and coast through the area with it face of it's wedge forward.

Though I guess at close enough range you could loop the missile off to the side and back so it skims its wedge across of the face of cloud of sand.

(Though neither would work if the sand was deployed in the grav eddies of the approach/departure lane of a terminus. An active wedge would be torn apart by the gravity even faster than an unprotected object would. Though there the natural grav forces would already be rapidly dispersing the sand)
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Re: A new idea for sandcasters...
Post by Galactic Sapper   » Tue Jul 09, 2019 5:57 pm

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Jonathan_S wrote:You'd probably need to use a recon drone instead. You can't change acceleration on a missile's wedge after it's active. (According to a post here from RFC you can't even, yet, program a multi-drive missile with different accelerations for different drive stages)

A recon drone could cut accel, tip 90 degrees, and coast through the area with it face of it's wedge forward.

Though I guess at close enough range you could loop the missile off to the side and back so it skims its wedge across of the face of cloud of sand.

(Though neither would work if the sand was deployed in the grav eddies of the approach/departure lane of a terminus. An active wedge would be torn apart by the gravity even faster than an unprotected object would. Though there the natural grav forces would already be rapidly dispersing the sand)

Yeah, I remembered that bit hours after I posted. So recon drones, a missile modified to use the lower accel recon-drone-type nodes, or a missile modified to be able to turn 90 degrees off course and go into a really tight spiral.

Come to think of it, has anything ever been said about ships coming to grief due to physical collision with debris from other ships? Especially in the major fleet battles pre-cease-fire, where the ship at the head of the wall of battle might blow up and have the rest of the fleet dive into the debris field at 300+ gees?

The forward energy weapons and point defense clusters might hit the biggest pieces but there'd be scores of torso- to small-car-sized pieces of armor and structural framing and other high-density bits hitting your hull at multiple kilometers per second. And that's if those same forward weapons aren't having to engage an enemy at the same time.
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