Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
h a l f b a k e r y
Apply directly to forehead.

idea: add, search, annotate, link, view, overview, recent, by name, random

meta: news, help, about, links, report a problem

account: browse anonymously, or get an account and write.



Colonize Mercury

Specifically the twilight zone
  (+4, -1)
(+4, -1)
  [vote for,

I've been told (perhaps falsely) that Mercury, like Earth's Moon, is unbearably hot on one side and unbearably cold on the other. Unlike the Moon, which always shows the same face to the Earth, it has been said that Mercury always shows the same face to the Sun. If this is the case, then there is an always-hot hemisphere and an always-cold hemisphere. It follows from the Intermediate Value Theorem that somewhere in the twilight zone it is room temperature. While the challenges of a vacuum atmosphere, absent hydrosphere and time-delay in communications remain, perhaps there is less of a challenge with climate control than with the frigid Mars, the scalding Venus or the wildly oscillating Moon.
LoriZ, Jun 03 2010

The Memory of Whiteness http://en.wikipedia...Memory_of_Whiteness
To avoid the dangerous solar radiation, the city rolls around the planet's equator on tracks, keeping pace with the planet's rotation so that the Sun never rises fully above the horizon. [xaviergisz, Jun 03 2010]

Mercury 2.0 Mercury_202_2e0_20%28the_20planet%29
this baker wrote a fair bit about this concept. [bungston, Jun 03 2010]

Mercury is not to the Sun as Luna is to Earth. http://library.thin...tidally_locked.html
...And I didn't feel like explaining it myself. [DrWorm, Jun 04 2010]


       I thought I'd read that you'd have to stay moving at four miles/klicks? an hour continuously stay ahead of Mercurys sunrise...and now I have to find out for sure. I hope your happy.   


       " The rotation of Mercury is very strange. For hundreds of years, it was thought to rotate synchronously, so that it always kept one face to the Sun, just as the Moon always keeps one face to the Earth. Its actual rotation, however, causes it to turn exactly one and a half times each time it goes around the Sun, so that it turns one side toward the Sun in one orbit, and the other side toward the Sun in the next orbit, making the day on Mercury twice as long as the year. In addition, at perihelion, the motion of the planet around the Sun is faster than its rotation, so that the Sun actually seems to stop its normal (westward) motion, and move the other way for a little while."   

       Cool, but it looks like the only way to set up a stationary permanent base would be to tip one of its poles toward the sun. I think I might have figured out the mearest glimmer of how to do just that using Gyroscilation and nukes. Wat do you think the odds are of convincing world powers to part with their precious nukes though eh?   

       2 fries, I calculated an average speed of about 3.6km/h, but like you noted, you'd have to adjust for the perihelion.
xaviergisz, Jun 03 2010

       If'n Mercury does rotate too fast for a mobile base, alls you gotta do is go up toward one of the poles and find a latitude at which the terminator moves slow enough to keep up with.   

       Why stay directly on the terminator, anyhow? I'm thinking that there would be a hell of a lot of power available if you trailed along behind the sunset line.   

       If the ground was still very hot, and the sky was already dark, you would have an incredible thermal potential difference.   

       Just drop one end of a thermocouple in a pool of molten lead, and put the other one in a radiator pointed up into interstellar cold.
baconbrain, Jun 03 2010

       vague recollection of there being ice in some craters at one of the poles... sounds like a good spot.
FlyingToaster, Jun 03 2010

       Yes, Chao Meng-Fu. I don't know how big it is. It would be feasible to survive there but you'd have to get there first. I imagine the mining would be pretty good.   

       This has, however, not only been mentioned before but there's actually a 'baker, [MercuryNotMars] as his nickname with reference to it, i think.   

       Later: Yes, Chao Meng-Fu at the south pole has an alleged diameter of a hundred and sixty-seven kilometres with forty percent always in shadow. That's an area the size of Puerto Rico or three Luxembuerge. Not tiny but a long way to go. Possibly very high economic value though - minerals.
nineteenthly, Jun 03 2010

       We suggest placing large numbers of sunloungers just before the terminator. Then when the sun comes up and all the Germans rush out to put towels on them, the Universe will become a slightly better place ...
8th of 7, Jun 03 2010

       Regardless of where you build a room, it's always going to be room temperature.
normzone, Jun 03 2010

       This is a valid cocept, but it wouldn't work on Mercury. Mercury isn't actually tidally locked to the Sun; that notion was disproved in 1965. (link)
DrWorm, Jun 04 2010

       Now define cocept.
swimswim, Jun 04 2010

       Holy craip I guess that's the kind of obsolete information I get from the public library, the cheapskates.
LoriZ, Jun 05 2010

       The Russians can take the cold side and the Persians (nee Iranians) will find use for the hot side.
pashute, Nov 01 2015


back: main index

business  computer  culture  fashion  food  halfbakery  home  other  product  public  science  sport  vehicle