Comic 133 - About Saturn...

11th Sep 2013, 9:05 PM
About Saturn...
Average Rating: 5 (19 votes)

Author Notes:

Centcomm 11th Sep 2013, 9:05 PM edit delete
Have a wonderful day people!
Still packing and counting days till I leave for Arizona! gonna be a whole new ball game!
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cattservant 11th Sep 2013, 9:13 PM edit delete reply

I'm increasingly convinced that Dr. Kotko used some feline DNA in his basic mix.
highlander55 11th Sep 2013, 9:43 PM edit delete reply

Why? Is it her Catty attitude?
cattservant 11th Sep 2013, 9:53 PM edit delete reply

Her purity of self interest.
highlander55 11th Sep 2013, 9:54 PM edit delete reply

Same thing.
cattservant 11th Sep 2013, 9:57 PM edit delete reply

You mean 'Attitude'!
highlander55 11th Sep 2013, 10:07 PM edit delete reply

Now you read me! :)
Centcomm 12th Sep 2013, 9:43 AM edit delete reply

LOL cat DNA .. thats funny
MikeLinPA 13th Sep 2013, 9:58 AM edit delete reply
in Dark Angel. (I forgot the character's name.)
cattservant 11th Sep 2013, 11:14 PM edit delete reply

It occurs to me
that it's a good thing
EPs didn't stop
one more planet out.
Stormwind13 11th Sep 2013, 11:36 PM edit delete reply

I find it interesting they stopped at the LAST planet that was known to the ancients. Was that a coincidence? Anyone want to lose some money betting it was? :-D
cattservant 12th Sep 2013, 12:07 AM edit delete reply

[What is this 'money' you speak of?]

Semi-seriously though;
The EPs no doubt had the Solar System thoroughly surveyed the first time they were here. They probably stopped in Saturn Orbit that time too.
Perhaps for technical/logistical considerations.
It might not be practical to run a Singularity Drive too close to the Primary.

Also Saturn space is complex. Lots of energy resources and places to hide even a 150 mile long 'Ship'.*

*(Bet it's an engineered asteroid.)
Stormwind13 12th Sep 2013, 12:44 AM edit delete reply

Yeah, but Jupiter is probably noisier. I mean, it gives off FAR more energy and it has a lot of moons and the like to hide among. But your supposition about the star drive (with its tame black hole) not being well received further into the solar system probably has some merit. :-)
cattservant 12th Sep 2013, 1:11 AM edit delete reply

[Of course, all this erudite speculation is just in aid of my 'dancing around' a rather low-brow implication about this page's title...] ...>^~O^<!..
Centcomm 12th Sep 2013, 9:45 AM edit delete reply

Saturn has a lot of the same things as Jupiter to offer as well as not being as DANGEROUS to visitors.

The person im consulting with made a compelling argument for Saturn. and it still works for the story/plot.
Stormwind13 12th Sep 2013, 10:32 PM edit delete reply

Yeah, I can see that. The environment is NOT as hot (in several senses of the word).

I was just pointing out if they were interested in HIDING Jupiter might have worked better as the radiate energies from something the size of Jupiter could mask something the size of the EARTH, nevermind a piddling little 150 mile asteroid. :-D

As a way-point though, Saturn would work well. I think it probably is a coincidence that the planet chosen was the last planet the ancients knew about though. :-)
Centcomm 12th Sep 2013, 10:38 PM edit delete reply

Well as you proably guessed , they arent intrested in hiding.. :D

and yeah it is interesting that they picked that isnt it :D
Mister Black 13th Sep 2013, 12:11 AM edit delete reply

Saturn as an initial destination isn't a coincidence, but it has nothing to do with whether or not Saturn was visible to ancient astronomers.

After a long trip, any ship is going to need to resupply certain things, no matter how efficiently they recycle in transit. The must-have list (assuming Earth-compatible life) would be organic compounds (from which they could synthesize anything from hydrogen and carbon for fuel and composites up through polymer plastics) and water. Take a quick look around the Solar system. Pluto, the Belt, Mercury, Venus, and Mars go off the list fairly fast, since they're low on (or totally lacking in) all of the above. Earth/Luna is home to a civilization of unknown temperament and capability. That leaves the outer-system giants. Neptune and Uranus aren't bad choices, but they're fairly desolate neighborhoods (no cover) and lack water ice. Jupiter has huge reserves of hydrocarbons, but also has massive E-M storms (the Jupiter-Io conduit), and tends to attract a lot of debris from the edges of the Belt. That leaves Saturn. Saturn has everything our hypothetical ship needs. Titan has oceans of hydrocarbons at the bottom of a relatively benign gravity well, the ring system is full of water ice, and the system as a whole is 'busy' enough to hide in, but stable enough to minimize collision hazards.

It's also far enough from Earth/Luna to let our hypothetical ship get a good, long look at anything coming from in-system, or from the Belt.
Centcomm 13th Sep 2013, 12:27 AM edit delete reply

awesome responce Mister Black. and this is why I come to you for advice :D
Stormwind13 13th Sep 2013, 9:28 AM edit delete reply

Very telling points. And I concur that it would make a logical stopping point. :-)

Still, anyone that could use a singularity as a star drive shouldn't be TOO concerned about the environment that Jupiter presents. I mean, they should be able to deal with the threats of the Jovian system using minimal resources. Though the possible trash (Jupiter is called the vacuum sweeper of the solar system after all) coming in could make it not worth the hassle if the choice was straight forward, pick one or the other.

I submit though the choice might not have been quite that easy, it might have been more about positioning.

If the aliens already know about the Earth, and that is their ultimate destination than whatever their inbound course (on the vector they were using, whatever it might be) would only intersect some of the outer planets. Saturn takes approximately 29.5 (Earth) YEARS to go around the Sun. Jupiter takes slightly less than 12 (Earth) years. So there is several years that Jupiter could be on the far side of the Sun from Saturn and where the Earth is positioned too (though the Earth shifts the most, of course).

So it is entirely possible that the aliens' decision could be based on what is in on their inbound course. Might have been simply that Saturn was more CONVENIENT for them. :-)

Either Jupiter or Saturn would have worked for the aliens, but Saturn could have been the one they could get to with the least maneuvering.

At least it is possible. If you give an EXACT date for the contact it would be possible to figure out where the planets actually will be on those dates. Which would allow us to see if that could be a possible explanation for their choice at least. :-D
Tokyo Rose 13th Sep 2013, 7:27 PM edit delete reply

Also, Saturn has a big sign on it that says "Last Restrooms for Several Million Miles".
mjkj 14th Sep 2013, 9:01 PM edit delete reply

*lol* great one, Rose :)
Mister Black 13th Sep 2013, 7:46 PM edit delete reply

The Jovian trash collection issue would probably be enough of an argument against staying anywhere near the place, even without the E-M problems.

Face it...Hollywood depictions (and wartime conditions) aside, any interstellar ship is probably going to be risk-averse to a degree that makes a Pierson's Puppeteer look like an extreme skateboarder at the X-Games (and if the mental image of a Puppeteer on a skateboard doesn't break your brain....). It's not a matter of cowardice, but practicality. If something breaks your ship, it's a long wait for the SSS (Stellar Spacecraft Society) tow shuttle! :-D
Centcomm 13th Sep 2013, 7:51 PM edit delete reply

I remember several conversations to this effect when setting up the story >_<
Antonious 14th Sep 2013, 12:29 AM edit delete reply

Been years since I have heard anyone mention the Puppeteers.
Mister Black 14th Sep 2013, 3:29 AM edit delete reply

I'm an old fan of Speaker-to-Seafood's writing, with a lot more accent on the 'old' than I'd like. :-D
Stormwind13 11th Sep 2013, 11:33 PM edit delete reply

Tiny little ship there. I mean, it wouldn't even stretch across the Bailley crater on the Moon! :-D

I guess you would need some space in your ship for the equipment to generate/contain a tame black hole though. At 150 miles that would be long enough to SPAN the state of Indiana (in the East-West direction). So that is an AWFUL lot of space. :-)

And totally lost in the vastness of space (as Saturn could hold over 700 Earth's in its volume, though it only weighs like 95 times what Earth does :-D).

No real time conversations with the aliens though, as they are at LEAST an HOUR, 11 minutes out by radio wave. At the worst it is nearly an hour and half.
Centcomm 12th Sep 2013, 9:46 AM edit delete reply

more will be explained in due course. :D i cant really reveal much at this point :D
Mister Black 13th Sep 2013, 6:22 AM edit delete reply

Even setting aside the requirements to generate, contain, and control a singularity, any remotely realistic interstellar ship is going to be huge. Look at the ISS. It's designed for a crew of 6-12, and requires resupply every 60-90 days. By S-F standards, that's *tiny*, and it's bigger than a (US rules) football field (356 x 239).

Now, scale that up to something that can handle long-duration trips (like a certain ship's '5 year mission') without resupply, and with enough redundant systems to make the trip even relatively safe, and things are already getting huge. Barring some serious applied phlebotinum (I'm looking at *you*, replicators!), you're going to need massive cargo spaces just for stores. If the trip time is really long, you might even have separate habitats to guard against things like plague, hull damage, or massive malfunction. Even before adding in the engineering section, anything smaller than a medium-sized city gets crowded fast. Essentially, the longer the trip, the bigger the ship, and at some point, the growth rate becomes closer to geometric than linear.
Stormwind13 13th Sep 2013, 9:43 AM edit delete reply

Very true Mr. Black. Depending on the actual shape, and theorizing that the aliens have gravity control (a likely result of the aliens ability to use a singularity for an engine) then they would have the entire VOLUME to play with. If it was a tube 150 miles long, to keep structural strength how wide would have to be (gah, I know it can be figured but I don't have the time to do that now) that would be a HUGE amount of space. If it was more spherical, it would get to be even MORE massive.

But you are correct for safety and redundancy, the aliens would likely NEED a huge amount of volume. The further they had to travel the more they would need to bring to ensure their survival.

Very well thought out rational. :-) Per chance, have you read 'Survey Ship' by Marion Zimmer Bradley? :-) As I remember (been a couple decades since I read it) Ms. Bradley presented some of the problems of long duration travel. There would be more for more entities. And aliens might have things humans would not even CONSIDER. :-)
Mister Black 13th Sep 2013, 11:37 AM edit delete reply

I have, indeed, read "Survey Ship", but I'm an engineer at heart, and it shows...I have shelves full of things like "Interplanetary Flight" by Sir Arthur C. Clarke, "Spaceship Propulsion, Analysis, and Design" by Humble, Henry, and Larson, "The Starflight Handbook" by Mallove and Matloff. I keep a bookmark to the Atomic Rocket / Project Rho home page (they have all the math and tables in one place), and I season it with a full collection of E.E. Smith's "Lensmen" and a garnish of Perry Rhodan.

In short, I am a hopeless space-geek!
Antonious 14th Sep 2013, 12:38 AM edit delete reply

Mr. Black may I say I am having serious space geek envy over your "collection" Of resources. My bookmarks consist of current space operations companies like SpaceX, NASA, Eurospace, etc. My book selection is similar to what you mentioned.
Centcomm 14th Sep 2013, 12:41 AM edit delete reply

and now you know why hes one of the "advisors" for the comic :D
cattservant 14th Sep 2013, 12:51 PM edit delete reply

The EPs aren't going back home this time either.
So they probably packed heavy.
jamie59 11th Sep 2013, 11:57 PM edit delete reply

Rose friend, prorector, & employer. I'm wanting to know Rose more.
Centcomm 12th Sep 2013, 9:47 AM edit delete reply

shes pretty darn awesome in her own way.
Jade44 12th Sep 2013, 12:32 AM edit delete reply
Just an observation. In such an obviously high-tech society why is it that they are still using the obsolete US-English system of measurement?
Stormwind13 12th Sep 2013, 12:41 AM edit delete reply

Probably just so the author/artist of the strip don't have to do conversions every time they put some unit of measure into the strip. Americans love their old measurements. :-)
cattservant 12th Sep 2013, 1:03 AM edit delete reply

I thought Comic Fury had an automatic translator/filter setting that detected the reader's brain-waves and printed the appropriate information.
Centcomm 12th Sep 2013, 9:48 AM edit delete reply

im still used to the "old school feet / miles thing - and a lot of what i do IS converted HOWEVER some people in the story will use old english units no matter what the year.
mjkj 14th Sep 2013, 2:30 PM edit delete reply

I never understood those - though growing up in a metric society will do that to you...
Lurker 12th Sep 2013, 3:19 AM edit delete reply
But where is the "Chort"? I mean, is this comic supposed to be THAT family friendly? And how are people supposed to google for a transliterated phrase which is so short?


Really LOVE this comic, btw...

Any hope to get Staff & Sword going again? LOVE your work...
Centcomm 12th Sep 2013, 9:50 AM edit delete reply

HUH? i dont really understand the first part of your question , but thank you for the compliments. Staff and sword is proably on hold untill Luna Star is finished - unlike DC it has a actual ending :D
Lurker 13th Sep 2013, 5:02 AM edit delete reply
Apparently, the title didn't post: "2 years of college Russian finally pays off"

But since you didn't know what I meant by the "Chort", it would appear that her exclamation means something other than what I thought.

Do tell!
Centcomm 13th Sep 2013, 11:39 AM edit delete reply

Oh Bozhe Moi means "my god" in her native language. :D

she may speak litterally thousands of launguages but she still only has one "native" language.
Lurker 13th Sep 2013, 5:03 AM edit delete reply
"until Luna Star is finished" SAY IT ISN'T SO!

Mister Black 13th Sep 2013, 6:30 AM edit delete reply

I wouldn't dare to speak for the creative of them is within skillet-swinging distance...but I don't think you have to worry about the DC universe running out of stories any time soon. After all, the established canon covers ~800 years of history and at least three 'worlds' (Earth, Luna, and the Belt). Given the extreme segregation of Earth in the DCU's 'current day', you could even argue that while Earth is one *planet*, it's at least three separate *worlds*.
Sheela 14th Sep 2013, 4:32 PM edit delete reply

And should she ever run out of stories, I'm certain there's some inspiration to be found somewhere in the comments. >_<
Lurker 15th Sep 2013, 3:38 AM edit delete reply
But I REALLY like THIS one!

You can bring out full toddler in be like this...
Centcomm 15th Sep 2013, 11:45 AM edit delete reply

there are many more storys planned for Datachasers.. :D but yes Luna Star does have a ending. it always has :D >_<
mjkj 13th Sep 2013, 2:21 PM edit delete reply

Yayy for distractions...

*lol* - only Rose is allowed to make jokes :) I like that she really treads Galina well and ensures her safety.

I hope Galina will find out the way the visitors try to communicate. I believe she will do it fast and efficient and also will (incidentally) fulfil her promise to Rainer.

Seems like the visitors were here before and either learned greek or taught them greek.
Centcomm 14th Sep 2013, 12:40 AM edit delete reply

yep something like that :D
mjkj 14th Sep 2013, 2:32 PM edit delete reply

Hmm, thought so.

Though now I wonder to which part of my post you had responded to - somehow that answer fits to all...

Sheela 14th Sep 2013, 4:33 PM edit delete reply

They probably know old norse too.
Highlander55 14th Sep 2013, 8:17 PM edit delete reply
Hmm! Maybe they took all of the missing tribes that have been found all over the world. American Plains, Mexican, South American just to name a few locations. Granted they probably did not abduct them for anal probing but research on a controlled planet could be a reason. (Lab rats no matter how you look at it)
Mister Black 15th Sep 2013, 10:04 AM edit delete reply

Unless your hypothetical 'abducting aliens' have faster-than-light drives, that idea would very strongly imply that the aliens had a continuous presence in the Solar System. Think about it...just for the sake of simplicity, let's assume they travel at exactly 'c', and accelerate / decelerate instantaneously. Let's also assume they come from the Alpha Centauri system. That means that the minimum interruption in their experiments would be 9-10 years every time they left...not a good way to do research.

If they stay in system, they're going to get found sooner or later. Hiding two industrialized civilizations from each other at short range simply isn't possible, barring magic. There's too much radio frequency racket, too many drive signatures, and too many thermal blooms. Conclusion? No continued alien presence, and very low probability of an alien abduction scenario.
Centcomm 15th Sep 2013, 11:43 AM edit delete reply

heh once again I cant really comment on anything for fear of giving stuff away :D
highlander55 16th Sep 2013, 11:10 PM edit delete reply

I can comment Centcomm.
They would have taken the tribes to another planet(s) before technology developed. Paintings from around the world show what appears to be space ships (or just landing pods even) that some of the great painters of the Renaissance have what appears to be flying craft in them. Some of those from Eastern to Western drawings and paintings even show what appears to be sky battles of different beings and craft. Come back every hundred years or two and take a civilization back to maybe seed a new Earth and study up close. Why stay on or near Earth.
cattservant 15th Sep 2013, 3:39 PM edit delete reply

DC Comic 906 - Comic 913 . Tulip addresses some of this subject.

[Plus Extra Rose!]
Kuratenshi 15th Sep 2013, 7:24 PM edit delete reply

Hmm. Thing I like most about the Tokyo Rose we have been seeing the past few comics. She talks to EVERYONE like they are an adult. She might speak to them like they are a dumb adult or a smart adult, but there is exactly NO pointless coddling. =)
Centcomm 15th Sep 2013, 8:24 PM edit delete reply

she hates coddling :D
cattservant 15th Sep 2013, 10:55 PM edit delete reply

She gladly makes fools suffer!
Caley Tibbittz Collopy 20th Jan 2014, 9:25 PM edit delete reply

Ha, "Ass-maggots". And thus, my punk band is named!
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