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Old 08-28-2013, 02:57 PM
 
22 posts, read 17,852 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Retroit View Post
Here's a plot:

In order to create more living and agricultural space on Earth, a former Vice-President devises a scheme where sea water is pumped 93,570 feet* into outer space where it evaporates.

*At that altitude, the ambient temperature is -47.980 C 1976 Standard Atmosphere Calculator and the boiling point of water is -47.981 C Water Altitude Boiling Point Calculator so this is the lowest altitude that water will boil without any heating required. Of course, the water will presumably be warmer since it is coming from warmer temperatures and because the friction from transport would generate some heat, so the actual altitude could be lowered. The water could also be heated by solar power.

I don't know how you would support a pipe that long but I'm sure a former Vice-President could invent something.
Thank you for that idea and it's probably the closest thing to what might work in terms of sci-fi.
I understand that this is a tricky one, folks, and I am grateful for all your input. In terms of fitting things in with the story, I need the water to CEASE TO EXIST on Earth (I realise that vapourisation and so on is just changing water into another state), and while I like the idea of water being pumped into space to create living space, it doesn't really fit with the story I have.

Here's my idea: Sea levels rise and people panic. At first they start using the sea water as drinking water. But there is also a massive programme underway to try and colonise other planets (the Earth is becoming less and less hospitable). But one of the problems of colonising nearby planets is lack of water, especially on Mars, and also Earth's moon and others orbiting other planets - Jupiter and Saturn are gas giants so couldn't be lived on).

So to get round the problem, sea water is COMPRESSED somehow (would this be possible, however theoretically?) and sent to these worlds to be decompressed and then used by the migrant population.

I know you'd need a massive ship to transport oceans, but I'm interested in the idea also of somehow reducing water's volume by compressing it or something - can this be done? Even if it never has been done, would it be theoretically possible, however far-fetched?

BUT ALSO while all this is happening, a private corporation / tyrannical leader (doesn't really matter as this is only background to the story) has managed to isolate all the water on Earth in a small region, say, the size of France, and is withholding it. The rest of the planet has virtually no water.
This also raises feasibility questions: Would it be theoretically possible for the water to be isolated in one region of the Earth, without the risk of it returning to the dry regions through rainfall and so on?

Does any of this sound like it could be possible? Even if only in theory?
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Old 08-28-2013, 05:16 PM
 
Location: Pueblo - Colorado's Second City
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In a fiction world sure and I think it could make for a interesting novel. In the real world no.
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Old 08-28-2013, 05:32 PM
 
8,167 posts, read 9,380,695 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thecynicalmonk View Post

So to get round the problem, sea water is COMPRESSED somehow (would this be possible, however theoretically?) and sent to these worlds to be decompressed and then used by the migrant population.

I know you'd need a massive ship to transport oceans, but I'm interested in the idea also of somehow reducing water's volume by compressing it or something - can this be done? Even if it never has been done, would it be theoretically possible, however far-fetched?
You can compress a liquid, such as water, but it takes an incredible amount of compression to achieve a miniscule amount of compression. Thus, hydraulic systems and how they work. But in a fictional world, anything is possible I guess.
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Old 08-29-2013, 02:07 AM
 
Location: Seattle, Washington
3,738 posts, read 6,227,859 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Retroit View Post
Here's a plot:

In order to create more living and agricultural space on Earth, a former Vice-President devises a scheme where sea water is pumped 93,570 feet* into outer space where it evaporates.

*At that altitude, the ambient temperature is -47.980 C 1976 Standard Atmosphere Calculator and the boiling point of water is -47.981 C Water Altitude Boiling Point Calculator so this is the lowest altitude that water will boil without any heating required. Of course, the water will presumably be warmer since it is coming from warmer temperatures and because the friction from transport would generate some heat, so the actual altitude could be lowered. The water could also be heated by solar power.

I don't know how you would support a pipe that long but I'm sure a former Vice-President could invent something.
In a world of rapidly depleting and eventually vanished water supply, especially due to some action of a former Vice-President, I can imagine some kind of war or violence to break out, which would probably get pretty Gorey.
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Old 08-29-2013, 02:10 AM
 
Location: Seattle, Washington
3,738 posts, read 6,227,859 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 124c41 View Post
To the OP. I have been hooked on science fiction since I was a kid, and it was because I could suspend my belief of logic and enjoy the writing if I so desired. There have been many writers that were prophetic in their words, but quiet a few simply wrote stories for the entertainment of the reader, knowing the scenarios would never be plausible. I say to you to not limit your imagination to fundamental science. Dreamers create wonderful things, and they are only limited by their imagination. Instead of asking for confirmation of your ideas, dream big, and create.
+1. Reped you
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Old 08-29-2013, 04:25 AM
Status: "My eyes are rolled back so far I can see my brain." (set 19 days ago)
 
Location: Here.
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Compressing all the water on Earth into an area the size of France? Not possible with the laws of physics.

Volume of water on Earth: 332,500,000 cubic miles
Area of France: 246,201 square miles

So if you stacked up all the water on Earth onto France it would tower 1350.5 miles high. Of course the weight of all that water would probably depress France and the rest of Europe a considerable distance into the Earth's mantle.

Transporting water to other planets/moons would also be impractical. Even if you could create a balloon 1 cubic mile in volume, it would take 332,500,000 such balloons to transport all that water. And a pipeline to another planet/moon would also be difficult.

What you might want to try is having the villain of your novel buy up all the fresh water sources on the Earth. People would be forced to rely on the aquifer which would quickly dry up.
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Old 08-29-2013, 06:54 AM
 
22 posts, read 17,852 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cjg5 View Post
+1. Reped you
In absolutely agree with what you are saying, but the reason I would like there to be some threads of plausibility in the story I am writing is that I want people who read this to see things which are happening on Earth right now, and see how these things are the starting point for something much more catastrophic.

There always has to be some suspension of disbelief when you read sci-fi, but the story can still express cause and effect relationships which are not impossible (although VERY unlikely). One example that springs to mind is the third Star Trek film, "The voyage home" or whatever it's called, where the crew discover that mankind making whales extinct has led to an alien race that had been talking to the whales come here and scan our oceans for signs of the creatures, but in doing so they also vapourise the atmosphere. Of course, this is HIGHLY unlikely to happen at any time in the future, but those watching the films can see the cause-effect relationship (we'd best stop killing the whales or such-and-such could happen) no matter how outlandish the consequences seem.

That is what I want to achieve - I want my readers to think about desalination of sea water and rising sea levels and then see one possible set of consequences way in the future. I am not saying this is likely to happen at all, but I would at least like there to be some threads of scientific accuracy.

I should also perhaps explain that the story is not ABOUT a futuristic world with little water, it is only the SETTING for the story (very different). So I am not going to enter into detailed descriptions of exactly how and why things are the way they are. But I don't want it to be a situation like Dune, either, (which someone mentioned in a previous reply) where we are just told to accept that the story takes places on a world with no water, from what I recall.

Anyway guys your thoughts and ideas are helping me tremendously with this...

Thanks again to all who have posted here!!
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Old 08-29-2013, 06:57 AM
 
22 posts, read 17,852 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Retroit View Post
Compressing all the water on Earth into an area the size of France? Not possible with the laws of physics.

Volume of water on Earth: 332,500,000 cubic miles
Area of France: 246,201 square miles

So if you stacked up all the water on Earth onto France it would tower 1350.5 miles high. Of course the weight of all that water would probably depress France and the rest of Europe a considerable distance into the Earth's mantle.

Transporting water to other planets/moons would also be impractical. Even if you could create a balloon 1 cubic mile in volume, it would take 332,500,000 such balloons to transport all that water. And a pipeline to another planet/moon would also be difficult.

What you might want to try is having the villain of your novel buy up all the fresh water sources on the Earth. People would be forced to rely on the aquifer which would quickly dry up.
OK, but the thing is there isn't really a "bad guy" in the story.
What about if sea water got poured down a very, very big hole into the Earth's core? Would that get rid of the sea water?
May sound like a stupid question but it just occurred to me.
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Old 08-29-2013, 09:32 AM
 
8,167 posts, read 9,380,695 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thecynicalmonk View Post
OK, but the thing is there isn't really a "bad guy" in the story.
What about if sea water got poured down a very, very big hole into the Earth's core? Would that get rid of the sea water?
May sound like a stupid question but it just occurred to me.
The earth's core is hot. So the water will just evaporate out of the hole as you pour it into the hole. You could seal the hole and pressure feed the water down, but the water will still evaporate and will work its way up through rock.
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Old 08-29-2013, 09:44 AM
 
4,990 posts, read 7,775,878 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thecynicalmonk View Post
OK, but the thing is there isn't really a "bad guy" in the story.
What about if sea water got poured down a very, very big hole into the Earth's core? Would that get rid of the sea water?
May sound like a stupid question but it just occurred to me.
That's a weird scenario, but it wouldn't necessarily get rid of the sea water. Water covers a very large part of the Earth's surface. Sea water is where it is because water settles at the lowest general point. It's a big 'point' though. It's what we call sea level. Land surfaces are above sa level.

Sea water pouring into a big hole wouldn't necessarily get rid of sea water, although it'd produce a tremendous amount of steam. For example, think of the geysers at Yellowstone. I would think with your big hole scenario, any water flowing down onto the hole would boil, turn to steam, and erupt out as a gigantic geyser. Water would never reach the core because the core is much too dense. At best, it might come into contact with magma which would instantly turn it to steam (vapor). What happens at Yellowstone is that rain water is absorbed into the ground and trickles down deeper through tiny cracks reaching larger pockets or chambers. When the water gets deep enough, it begins to boil, turns to steam, then erupts out as a geyser. Think about what happens when you put water into a tea kettle and turn on the heat. The water in the kettle begins to boil, starts turning to steam, and 'erupts' through the spout.

The big-hole-in-the-ocean scenario would certainly change things, if the hole was big enough. It could be very disruptive to the atmosphere. I don't think water or the lack of it would be the major problem though. With such a gigantic hole, the enormous heat coming from the Earth's interior exposed by the hole would be a much bigger problem.
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