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Lich, Draugr, Poltergeist, and Phobetor: a neutron star system
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(02-18-2021, 06:19 PM)The Astronomer Wrote:
(02-18-2021, 04:01 PM)Crossroads Wrote:
(02-06-2021, 09:10 PM)stevebowers Wrote: I think there would be a lot of planets, especially around white dwarfs, that have had their previous atmospheres and surfaces eroded and replaced by material ejected from the star when it left the Main Sequence. In the EWoCS classification these planets would be classified as Ragnorokian, I think. According to that table, Ragnarokian planets might be rich in carbon, nitrogen, lead, mercury, barium molybdenum and a bunch of other interesting elements.

It would be so cool if white dwarf or neutron star planets had a habit of hosting exotic biospheres because of unusual element abundances. Well, in real life too, but barring real-world reasons to think it's impossible, it would be cool to have in the setting naturally occurring biosphere(s) based on (typically rarer) heavy elements, even if just a brief mention (maybe at the Garden World article). I know about Samael, but there have got to be a few others that don't have a sophont species or even are just microbial (but still biochemically exotic).

Does it have to be natural?

Not necessarily, but an artificial exotic biosphere can be created anywhere regardless of element abundances. Part of the fun (for me at least) with hard sci-fi is the idea of "you can't prove this is impossible", so the idea that exotic biospheres around these exotic stars could really arise naturally and just be waiting to be discovered is cool. Exotic biospheres created by advanced civilizations would also be cool, but that's a different concept.

Then again, maybe some such a civilization would prefer to do such a thing where heavy elements are already abundant. Still, I like the idea that even before sophont agency gets in the mix, the universe is spectacularly creative.

Not sure if the above will make sense to others, but it's my thoughts anyway. I don't mean to suggest that an artificial biosphere shouldn't be done.
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RE: Lich, Draugr, Poltergeist, and Phobetor: a neutron star system - by Crossroads - 02-19-2021, 03:39 AM

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