[ExI] The strange star that has serious scientists talking about an alien megastructure

spike spike66 at att.net
Fri Oct 16 13:44:43 UTC 2015



From: extropy-chat [mailto:extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org] On Behalf
Of Anders Sandberg


My two pence:

Still, there is an interesting astrophysics question here: if you have a
Dyson swarm and leave it with no guidance, over time it will likely coalesce
into planet(s). How fast is this process?

I guess the answer depends on (1) the timescale of a ring of equidistant
collectors coalescing (which in turn is related to Maxwell's work on the
stability of Saturn's rings; see
http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/summary?doi= for a take
on the control problem), and (2) the effect of having different inclination
rings near each other. Any ideas?

Dr Anders Sandberg
Hi Anders, 
This question needs more calculation.  Your contention that a Dyson swarm
would coalesce into planets might depend on the outcome of thermal
calculations.  Perhaps if my previous thermal model is correct and an MBrain
must reflect much of the low-entropy energy in order to prevent overheating,
then a sub-swarm could form, create an SBrain or a Saturn-scale swarm which
can go in closer to the star and still maintain an acceptable temperature.
Oh this needs more and better thermal calculations.  We need to interest a
good sharp Matlab-enabled graduate student.
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