Where can I find help for checking the science of the world I'm building?

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Harion
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Where can I find help for checking the science of the world I'm building?

Postby Harion » Mon Oct 08, 2018 2:09 pm

Is there a game or an app where I can build a solar system and find out how it would act using real-world physics?

eg. I would like to create a planet with 3 moons. I'd like to see how a planet with 3 moons would act with real-world physics. How would the 3 moons orbit the planet, what sizes would they have to be to be viable as moons and still be stably orbiting around the planet? How would tides and storms in the planet work with 3 moons? Or how far from each other can planets be in order to have a stable orbit around their sun?

edit: nvm. I found this: http://universesandbox.com/ shortly after making this thread
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orbivillein
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Re: Where can I find help for checking the science of the world I'm building?

Postby orbivillein » Mon Oct 08, 2018 6:39 pm

Celestia is a 3-D animated celestial freeware program that offers viewable results from user developed scenarios, objects, models, and scripts. Steep learning curve and no fact checks, though.

A planet and three moons, probably other planets, maybe many moons and planetesimals, comet clouds, asteroid belts, and Trojan and Greek point asteroids, variant star types and sequence stages, resonant orbits, Roche limits, debris rings, unsolvable n-body problem trigonometry -- oh my, lots of celestial physics considerations.

A close proximation and handwavium otherwise will do for dramatic needs, really, not the stellar system's rigidly valid viability so much as the effects the system imposes on contestant personas. Isaac Asimov's Nightfall is an example of excellence for consideration there.

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AlexH
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Re: Where can I find help for checking the science of the world I'm building?

Postby AlexH » Wed Oct 10, 2018 12:14 pm

Not games or apps, but I've seen related questions and knowledgable people on the likes of https://worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/ and https://www.reddit.com/r/worldbuilding/
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Spiraledpen
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Re: Where can I find help for checking the science of the world I'm building?

Postby Spiraledpen » Sat Oct 13, 2018 7:16 am

Currently I’m unaware of anything that meets the criteria you’re searching for. However, using what science has on our own solar system should work well enough. There’s a lot of information on our planets. I would use the general rules of logic to develop your world. This topic does fall under the science fiction label. You take basic science and stretch it as far as it can go. Earth has one moon. Use the common things that the moon does and triple it. Three moons, three different types of tides. One moon cycle, now three cycles. Those will effect lighting and mature, triple the effects. This sets up your idea. Then you can expand from there.
This is just a general example, but as long as it follows common sense and a logical line of thinking, it will generally be accepted. (Of course there are those who are sticklers, but no one can meet all of the criteria’s of science in a fictional story that involves a place that doesn’t exist.) hope this helps some.

Look at Anne McCaffery’s works, great world build


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Harion
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Re: Where can I find help for checking the science of the world I'm building?

Postby Harion » Sat Oct 13, 2018 10:04 am

Spiraledpen wrote:Currently I’m unaware of anything that meets the criteria you’re searching for. However, using what science has on our own solar system should work well enough. There’s a lot of information on our planets. I would use the general rules of logic to develop your world. This topic does fall under the science fiction label. You take basic science and stretch it as far as it can go. Earth has one moon. Use the common things that the moon does and triple it. Three moons, three different types of tides. One moon cycle, now three cycles. Those will effect lighting and mature, triple the effects. This sets up your idea. Then you can expand from there.
This is just a general example, but as long as it follows common sense and a logical line of thinking, it will generally be accepted. (Of course there are those who are sticklers, but no one can meet all of the criteria’s of science in a fictional story that involves a place that doesn’t exist.) hope this helps some.

Look at Anne McCaffery’s works, great world build


Spiraledpen

wotf029

umm. i don't want to write soft science. i want to write hard sci-fi. i've taught high school physics and chemistry to know i don't want to stretch the believability of science to incredulous levels. what i'm really asking for is an easy way of doing things that won't require me to do the hard work. an app should be able to do that. i don't want to start from the ground up and create my own app just to simulate real-world physics. time i could spend on writing would be spent just calculating the physics stuff of my world, which isn't productive from a writer's POV.
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WOTF entries:
Q1 Vol 29 - R
Q3 Vol 35 - HM
Q4 Vol 35 - R

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orbivillein
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Re: Where can I find help for checking the science of the world I'm building?

Postby orbivillein » Sat Oct 13, 2018 11:49 am

When I studied astrophysics, course materials included companion application and software discs that were bundled with textbooks, websites for exercises and assignments, too. The courses explored the cosmos, and the apps and such did pieces of what you want -- way back in unstable hand-me-down stepchild, legacy Windows 96 and Mac System 7 eras and for high resource demands. An early-adapter Smart Classroom. System freezes were everyday occurrences and all user content wiped clean each overnight.

Roche limit exercises started from known celestial parameters of the Sun, planets, major moons, and rings. Also computations of comet orbits, orbital resonances, then little known yet emergent Oort planetesimals and extrasolar planets. Why does Mercury remain intact? Yet Saturn's rings persist? Why rings around Jupiter, Uranus, and Neptune? Why massive extrasolar Jovians close in to their primaries? Predict local tides from lunar phases. Compare and contrast, explain Phobos and Deimos, the Moon, and Saturn's manifold moons. Calculate orbits for artificial satellites around Earth. Calculate orbital perturbations by Jupiter that sweep asteroid and comets away from Earth impact, or steer impact toward Earth. Etc. Input parameters and see results, more so.

Hour and a half classes twice a week, most of which were app and online exercises, and likewise homework. All proprietary content, had to register for and have use licenses for the apps and websites. Look at college required text lists and bookstore catalogs, online booksellers, find similar up-to-date app software companions to astrophysics textbooks.

Three metastable moons would require the mass of each be sufficient to hold them together, each would be of a resonance to the other, no major nearby planets to perturb their orbits much, and of massive moons' orbits on the order of the Earth-Moon system would more so appear from an external perspective a four-thread braid than a swarm, an episodic swarm when seen from the planet.

A roughly Earth-equivalent habitable planet and, if wanted, visitable though difficult three moons, would mean a barycenter far above each's surface and out of proportion to the Earth-Moon's. Their orbital resonances would be determined by masses and distances. Then what and when tides occur where and moon phases are determined by orbits and altitudes. Some scenarios would result in uncommon occasions when all or none are visible, all or none "full," and all eclipse or occult each other and other planets' bright pinpoints.

Goldilocks zone star system and planet or marginal, if at all, biosphere planet? Native life or immigrant settlers? Bioformed or natural? Do lunar tides play as important a biology role as Carl Sagan posited? Set up and establish biorhythms (the intake-excrete cycle, for one, mammal menses cycles, too).

Mars is metal poor, and the Moon; Earth, metal abundance, fortunately, for magnetism that protects the atmosphere and shields harmful radiation. Saturn's Titan moon is hydrocarbon and water-ice rich. Mercury, metal rich, though no atmosphere to speak of, blown away by Solar winds and fierce radiation.

Venus, a runaway greenhouse of toxic, corrosive compounds, whose surface crust episodically melts. Moons and asteroids and comets of water and hydrocarbon ices, of sulfur, of dust and granule and gravel or boulder aggregates, of dirty, stony slush, of chondrites, of cyanide, of possible precious metal troves, of essentials for and detriments to life and interplanetary resource exploitation.

The number and complexity of considerations are vast; again, rough approximations are all that one person, entire astrophysics colleges, and all apps can manage, that fiction wants, too. What does the drama scenario want that's not too melodrama-contrived? (Rhetorical question.) And answers more so about the drama than the "hard" science, yet valid and authentic science.

Spiraledpen
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Re: Where can I find help for checking the science of the world I'm building?

Postby Spiraledpen » Sat Oct 13, 2018 12:07 pm

I understand what you’re looking for. My word choice was poor. “Stretched” should have been extrapolated. Like I said before, I don’t know of anything that is available for what you’re searching for. The only idea that comes to mind is to contact a college astrophysics department. See if there is a graduate student enrolled who is a science fiction fan. Someone might be interested in providing answers for a story with a hard science foundation. They might be willing to do the math.
I have a story involving a particle accelerator facility. I found a college that has one and found they were more than willing to provide an in depth tour.
Once again, I hope this helps.

Spiraledpen

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Truth is a three edged sword.

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