Ringworld implausibilities

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Nov 24, 1986, 10:27:47 AM11/24/86
In article <17...@ncoast.UUCP>, all...@ncoast.UUCP writes:
> Then of course, there's the superconducting cloth. Room-temperature super-
> conductors are barely plausible; but cloth??? Anything flexible enough to
> qualify as a "cloth" would be too thin to handle the trick where they
> use a strip of cloth, one end in a lake and the other hanging over the Slaver
> sunflowers, to ``de-fang'' said sunflowers.

Sorry, but it was superconducting *wire* that they used in this case,
although the floating platform thingee was wrapped in superconducting
cloth. That wire wouldn't have to be any stronger than a kite-string,
really; the platform was set to hover at some altitude so the string was
only to keep it from drifting away on the wind. What's wrong with the
idea of making superconducting material in wires and then weaving the
wires into cloth, anyway?

John T. Bryan USENET: ...!ihnp4!druhi!bryan
AT&T Information Systems PHONE: (303) 538-5172
12110 N. Pecos, #8C350 QUOTE: I didn't mean what you thought I meant
Denver, CO 80234 you said.
This is a disclaimer: I don't speak for AT&T, and they don't speak for me.

Ray Trent

Nov 27, 1986, 4:20:19 PM11/27/86
In article <17...@ncoast.UUCP> all...@ncoast.UUCP (Brandon Allbery) writes:
>Show me a wire cloth as flexible as cotton (as the superconducting cloth was
>implied to be) and yet able to conduct well, and I'll show you something that
>makes perpetual motion machines look plausible by comparison... The two don't

Obviously, you've never seen solder wick. If you take some nice thick
solder wick and spread it out to a width of about 1/4" and a thickness of
about 1 strand, it approaches (if not equals) the flexability of a tough
demin or muslin cloth. Since it is made of copper, it conducts fairly well.

Also, are you forgetting conductive foams, graphite fiber weaves, aluminum
foil, (or for that matter, gold leaf?), etc. You may not like these
as examples (they're not all *wire* cloth, and you may define "conduct
well" differently) but even so, one could make something like solder
wick with much smaller strands of 24K gold wire, and I bet it would
be *very* flexible. (it conducts ok, too :-) I won't even talk about
chain mail and similar cloths; they are *very* supple.

"A journey of a thousand miles..."
(tr...@csvax.caltech.edu, r...@caltech.bitnet, ...seismo!cit-vax!trent)

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