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Q&A

General Q&A about worldbuilding and other speculative developments that can be extrapolated from science.

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What Factors Could Cause a World to See "Northern" Lights Much Closer to the Equator?

I'm currently designing a world where the inhabitants see the Aurora Borealis on an almost nightly basis almost all the way to the equator. The lights are so strong they rarely see the stars beyond...

4 answers  ·  posted 8y ago by Liath‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Canina‭

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How long would a planet that losses its gravity take to break up?

In my setting, one of the fallouts due to interstellar war between civilisations is that a planet's gravity can be removed. This capability is part of the setting's hyperspace mechanics so the exac...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by Dave Driver‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by HDE 226868‭

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What could cause Earth to drift out of orbit over a period of months to years?

I would like to have Earth slowly move away from the sun, taking somewhere between several months and a couple of years to reach the point where human life on the surface is no longer possible. (T...

6 answers  ·  posted 8y ago by Monica Cellio‭  ·  edited 2y ago by Canina‭

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How can the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram be used in star building?

As you can probably guess from the title, I have some questions about the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram, especially how to use it to make plausible stars. Some questions: Can stars exist in the bl...

3 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by Sam Coutteau‭  ·  edited 2y ago by HDE 226868‭

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What can I add to an oxygen/nitrogen atmosphere to make it unpalatable or poisonous to humans, yet stable and breathable to local creatures?

I have a roughly Earth-like planet in a solar system some distance from ours. The atmosphere of this planet is largely similar to that of Earth, but particularly, has a somewhat higher oxygen conte...

9 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Canina‭  ·  edited 2y ago by Canina‭

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Anatomically Correct Mokèlé-mbèmbé

The Mokèlé-mbèmbé (meaning "one who stops the flow of rivers") is a legendary water-dwelling creature of Congo River basin folklore, loosely analogous to the Loch Ness Monster in Western culture. ...

3 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Uncle Tres‭  ·  edited 2y ago by Canina‭

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What would be different if a person has broader visual spectrum than normal

What would be differently perceived from a person with broader visual spectrum than normal? So I've seen this question, especially the accepted answer, and it certainly is not what I'm looking for...

2 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by Hendrik Lie‭  ·  edited 2y ago by Monica Cellio‭

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Anatomically Correct Vanara

Apart of the Anatomically Correct Series Vanara The Vanara is a group of people who lives in the forest in the Hindu epic "Ramayana." In there, it describes them as human-like, with reference to...

2 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by TGCF ‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by TGCF ‭

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If an ET has caramel blood, what it implies?

I want to write a SF story where humans discover that a species of ET has caramel instead of blood and I need some biological information in order to develop it in a realistic way. For my story, i...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by raiden‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by raiden‭

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What organs or modification needed to have tree that gain energy from lightning or electricity?

As the title: I want to know what kind of organs or modifications need for plants like tree to gain energy from lightning or electricity (and still fine or safe or alive of course). Since I have a...

5 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Li Jun‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Li Jun‭

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Would caves in general be practical lairs for a dragon?

So, I was writing an outline for the battle between a dragon and a bunch of humans. However, a key component of the humans' battle plan was to place a hidden stash of ballistae near the entrance wh...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by Mephistopheles‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Mephistopheles‭

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How could the display technology of self-rewriting books work?

Oh yes, it's Artifact Time! with Best Dad and Ozen the Immovable! If you watched Hairy Plotter and the Gas Chamber of Secrets, you probably remember the scene where the Horcrux of Adolf Hitler is ...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by Mephistopheles‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Mephistopheles‭

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Cons of Antimatter Weaponry

In the story I'm creating, a major weapon type of humanity will be Antimatter based weaponry. This is a fairly new technology, as antimatter production facilities have just reached the size and cap...

6 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Dawnfire‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Dawnfire‭

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Could my leviathans exist?

Leviathans are closely related to hydrophis spiralis. Some characteristics of these leviathans include: continuing to grow until they die and are able to grow almost as large as a blue whale are ...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by icewar1908‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by icewar1908‭

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Exclusively underground creature experiencing sun-light for the first-time

I have this creatures which were hiding underground for millennia. They are, from the beginning of their history, exclusively nocturnal. They emerged back on surface after moon disappeared (irrel...

3 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Prahara‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Prahara‭

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Water & Nutrient Cycle of an upside down forest

This is a follow up question to Sky of Earth and Seas of Sky I have a medieval fantasy setting where people live in a vast expanse of giant caves contained in a sort of giant Stanford torus. This...

7 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Nosajimiki - Reinstate Monica‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Nosajimiki - Reinstate Monica‭

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Can a Slime run?

In my world slimes are intelligent creatures of various sizes which can take the shape of anything they like and change color to camouflage. A slime can camouflage as floor , as a box, a snake or...

4 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Murray‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Murray‭

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How would Humans change, or evolve, to being Domed for many thousands of years?

A little snippet from my story idea, for some context- "The Earth Government Collapses, caused by the cutoff of resources from the Colonies. Large-Scale war soon erupts, with Nuclear Weapons being...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Hunt Castle‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Hunt Castle‭

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What evolutionary pressures would lead to solitary hominids?

Solitary humanoids aren't uncommon in works of fantasy/cryptozoology with Bigfoot coming to mind. What I want to know is What evolutionary pressures would lead to solitary humanoids? Some character...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by icewar1908‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by icewar1908‭

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What anatomical changes would you need to get 1 ton ride-able rodent?

So, I've decided that in my fantasy fiction, I want to have Megabara riders. Massive Capybaras, being ridden into a battle. I've done some basic research and I came across this extinct species tha...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Failus Maximus‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Failus Maximus‭

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What needs to be changed about the plate tectonics of my world?

So, after trying to make a few different world maps and not really feeling satisfied with them, I decided to attempt making a world a bit more from scratch, by adding in plate tectonics. Now, I did...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by devendoo‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by devendoo‭

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Could complex Precambrian life be possible?

I have a really good question. Could it be possible for complex life to have existed in the Precambrian? I'm aware that only the fossilized remains of bacteria have been discovered from that time p...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by Daikyu Maryu‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Daikyu Maryu‭

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How can my reptile like creature spray blood from its eyes containing Capsaicin?

My creature looks like a Psittacosaurus, with spikes all around its body, it hisses and uses its tail whip as a first. As last resort it will squirt an aimed stream of blood from its eyes toward it...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by user3556983‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by user3556983‭

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A creature with a built in flashlight

I know things like flashlight fish exist; things with luminescence and all that. But how strong could the light be? I have this cave dwelling species with three eyes except the middle one isn't ex...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Chickenpeep Chickenpeep‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Chickenpeep Chickenpeep‭

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If the Earth would break apart, how likely would the large debris stay in orbit?

In the story I'm writing, Earth gets destroyed and the few million humans that survive go to live on another Earth-like planet. Since the destruction of the planet, the humans do visit their star...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by SKKennell‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by SKKennell‭

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Can a galaxy be formed from a black hole?

I'm writing creative text and I'm curious to know, just as possibility, can a galaxy by any chance be formed out of a black hole?

3 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by 01e5Dk‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by 01e5Dk‭

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Could a Monotreme Griffin exist?

in the story i'm writing there is an island of mostly Monotremes which have diversified into a variety of ecological niches from giant platypus's to megafauna larger than the largest Placental Mamm...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by icewar1908‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by icewar1908‭

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How feasible would gliders or the like be on a flat plain, with no cliffs to launch from?

How effective or possible would flying machines that are not powered by a machine be on a flat plain? I have a setting where much of the world is a relatively flat grassland, and the people have n...

6 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by AlexT‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by AlexT‭

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Detection systems and trigger mechanism in a pre-electronic world?

I am building a setting that is essentially steampunk,being exact it would be pneumatic punk. What electronics and electronic equivalent exists, are primitive and extremely expensive. Thus the majo...

5 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Trismegistus‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Trismegistus‭

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How can I expand the definition and some specifics of pyrokinesis?

I'm writing a sci-fi world where, if you put it in simple words, a small percentage of population can manipulate the matter. I'm not going to dive into specifics, because I'm still working on WHY a...

6 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by quarterEpsilon‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by quarterEpsilon‭

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With as much scientific accuracy as possible, how would chemicals injected in one's body be removed?

I am currently writing the world, setting and characters for a project of mine called the ORION Project - a story set in a dystopian America in the near future of 2050, where the government has tak...

7 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by scriptyshake‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by scriptyshake‭

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How large would be the habitable area in a tidally locked planet?

The planet is identical to Earth except for one twist. It is not axially rotated but has an elliptical orbit, causing longer, planetwide winters. I would just like to ask what the width of the hab...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Mister Onion‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Mister Onion‭

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Could special relativity be caused by aliens jamming the Solar System?

A federation of alien spacefaring nations is doing basically the opposite of prime directive: they are jamming the Solar System, preventing us from leaving it. They are doing so by placing some de...

8 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by o0'.‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by o0'.‭

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Could a creature use lightning/electricity as its energy supply?

Could a creature use lightning (or any other source of electricity) as a sole energy source, and not need to eat? Would any additional organs be needed to store or use the electricity? I have a ra...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by AlexT‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by AlexT‭

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Megamangrove Roots--Which Kind of Aerial Roots Would Best Support Their Large Size?

In an alternate Earth, early or midway in the Eocene Epoch, there debuted a family of angiosperm trees whose roots need to be completely submerged. As a result, the limit is that they can't germin...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by JohnWDailey‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by JohnWDailey‭

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Could Sharks Survive a Longer PETM?

First things first, a little backstory: Sometime between the Paleocene and Eocene epochs, there was a mysterious, sudden, dramatic rise in global temperature. This moment in time was known as the...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by JohnWDailey‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by JohnWDailey‭

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anatomy or musculature to achieve full rotate jaw?

you know a jaw or mouth where the jaw full of teeth fully rotate like a drill or gear to shred their food or prey, usually show often in worm type of monster (my question is not necessary to be wor...

7 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Li Jun‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Li Jun‭

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Could penguins evolve to have fingers?

I've been trying to make a penguin-like humanoid race for a pretty long time now. I want to make them as realistic as possible. And I know such creatures could not exist in the real world, but I w...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by Thormind‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Thormind‭

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To carry a person in its palm (like King Kong) how much pressure and at what speed would a kaiju need to apply?

Assume my kaiju is around 200 feet tall, weighs around 4,000 US tonnes and resembles a large lobster with two giant claws for its front legs and long spindly limbs with tiny pincers on the ends for...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Luke Duffy‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Luke Duffy‭

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recreational drug specifically for reptile?

I want to know is there a recreational drug that specifically affect reptiles, either natural or man made chemicals. Humans and if possible other animals species should not be affected by it even i...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Li Jun‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Li Jun‭

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biologically or anatomically is there a problem with this type of double mouth or jaws?

i am not talking about xenomorph or moray eel type of jaws or multiple mouth or lower jaw inside the mouth. but this type of mouth/jaws or i called it double chin jaws where the chin also work as ...

5 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Li Jun‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Li Jun‭

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Would a sapient being sensitive to polarized light be able to see the angle of polarization in a photograph?

Many animals have the ability to see polarized light (or rather, are sensitive to the direction of polarization), most notably birds and bees but also a wide range of other animals including cephal...

7 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by user2352714‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by user2352714‭

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How long can a human body function at safe levels in slightly higher and lower gravity?

I have a number of alien species from different planets with gravity between 0.5g and 1.75g and I wanted to have groups of each of the species to exist together in a space habitat. As pointed out t...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by RandySavage‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by RandySavage‭

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Why haven't scientists found evidence of humans interbreeding with aliens?

In my alternative universe, Atlantis was a real city that existed, although it wasn't called Atlantis or founded by humans. Atlantis or rather, Dosham was a city on an isolated landmass in the nort...

5 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Arbiter Elegante‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Arbiter Elegante‭

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Giant velvet mites?

Velvet mites are some of the largest mites in the world, with species in the genus Dinothrombium reaching 12 mm in length (absolutely massive for a mite). What is the largest possible size a velvet...

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Praearcturus‭

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What would encourage multiple animal species to evolve human features simultaneously?

The setting is fifty-five million years in the future on Earth, with multiple humanoid species that have different ancestors, but share similar characteristics. Their ancestors would be animals tha...

8 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Lizardsaurus‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Lizardsaurus‭

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Are these traits for my planet mathematically accurate? Could it support life?

Mass of star: 0.75 M☉ Radius of star: 0.69 R☉ Surface temperature of star: 4,620° K Luminosity of star: 0.2 L☉ Satellites: 2 Place in solar system: 2nd Mean radius: 8,725.1 km Mass: 2...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Praearcturus‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Praearcturus‭

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is it possible for quadrupedal or hexapodal flying monster to fly well while their limbs retracted?

just suddenly struck by curiosity, i vaguely remember that big quadrupedal or hexapodal (if you count the wings) animals cant fly well basically. I dont remember why, but i think it was related to ...

2 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Li Jun‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Li Jun‭

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How to discretely sustain a plasma life-form?

I have some plasma life forms that have evolved within the photosphere of a star and also capable of existing on a neutron star and the ergoshpere or accretion disk of a blackhole. This lifeform c...

3 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by RandySavage‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by RandySavage‭

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Earth-sized Moon with Host Planet launched from Star System

Could a planet with the size and characteristics of the Earth orbit a gas giant and would the earth-like moon be able to maintain its orbit if the gas giant went rogue and was launched from its hos...

4 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by user76027‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by user76027‭

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