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stargazer.aurum

Variables fighters in macross use only thermonuclear energy or need some alternate fuel.

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Good day. I present this first issue in this glorious community, hoping it will be as clear as possible.

We all know that in macross VF's use the technology of miniaturized thermonuclear reaction turbines that was created from the technology of ASS-1.
Thanks to the OTEC it was possible to create these turbines applied from Valkyrie VF-1, the doubt that stands out is, if the turbines without taking into account the model of VF need to use external fuel, or is the power of the turbines themselves more than enough to not recharge anything else.

I have seen some scenes in macross 7 and macross delta that recharge fuel to the VF I have that doubt.
I hope it has been as clear as possible.

greetings to all.

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Well, the fusion reactors need something to fuse. There's also the need to fill air tanks for life support. Canonically, I believe they use the fusion reaction byproducts for reaction mass in space, and superheat the air in atmospheric flight(much the same way a modern jet engine does, albeit through different mechanisms).

 

The fusion reactors use cryogenic hydrogen, if I recall. There's a number of reasons you wouldn't want to leave that in the tanks during downtime, most related to hydrogen being kind of explosive in an atmosphere with oxygen and wanting to be a gas at anything more than a handful of degrees above absolute zero.

Edited by JB0

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The OTEC reactors can fuse almost anything if I recall actually, so fuel is a pretty liberal concept. The cryogenic hydrogen tends to get the most use because it's easy to get at, and in space they need a lot of fuel because of how liberally they run the engines to get high thrust plasma. They can run the reactors less hard in atmosphere since there is a free medium to use for propellant like JB0 said (super heated air).

Honestly, hydrogen, even cryogenically doesn't pack as well as other things so if the engines can fuse other things one has to wonder if it is the simplicity or abundance of that fuel that drives its usage. I don't know if there is an in universe answer for it, but either way the refueling we see in the shows is usually in the case of space action where they use it up a lot more quickly than when flying in atmospheres.

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4 hours ago, Master Dex said:

Honestly, hydrogen, even cryogenically doesn't pack as well as other things so if the engines can fuse other things one has to wonder if it is the simplicity or abundance of that fuel that drives its usage.

Abundance is a very good reason. You can always get more hydrogen, other fuels aren't so readily available in deep space.

But simplicity is also a good reason. Hydrogen fuses easily and releases a lot of energy per atom.  One assumes there's still some energy cost associated with initiating the reactions(otherwise you just gave thermodynamics the finger and created a perpetual motion machine), so easily-fused materials are going to be preferable because they cost less to fuse while giving you more back.

 

Just because you CAN fuse anything you want doesn't mean you SHOULD. Iron fusion, for example, is an endothermic reaction. Not what you want at all if you're trying to generate power(but exactly what you want if you're trying to make a star explode).

 

That said, they could spike their fuel with lithium for a nice performance boost. But lithium is harder to come by, especially in deep space.

...

That'd be a fun wrinkle in the setting, if the special forces Valks had a lithium tank for enhanced performance.

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10 hours ago, stargazer.aurum said:

Thanks to the OTEC it was possible to create these turbines applied from Valkyrie VF-1, the doubt that stands out is, if the turbines without taking into account the model of VF need to use external fuel, or is the power of the turbines themselves more than enough to not recharge anything else.

I have seen some scenes in macross 7 and macross delta that recharge fuel to the VF I have that doubt.

That a fusion reactor wouldn't need fuel is a surprisingly common misconception... likely due to the most frequently-cited example being the colossal self-sustaining thermonuclear fusion reaction we orbit (the sun).  What that example almost inevitably forgets to mention is that the sun is, in simple terms, a ball of fuel so massive that the compression force of its own mass started a thermonuclear reaction and exerts enough pressure to keep it going.

So, yes... the compact thermonuclear reactor at the heart of a thermonuclear reaction turbine engine in Macross does require an external fuel supply.  Unlike modern fusion reactors that use electrostatic fields, magnetic fields, or high-intensity laser pulses to trigger thermonuclear fusion, the OTM-based compact thermonuclear reactors use a Gravity and Inertia Control system (GIC) to compress the fuel using intense artificial gravity.1  Fuel compression by artificial gravity enables the reactor to extract a much greater quantity of energy from the same amount of fuel2 and making the engines extremely fuel-efficient in atmospheric flight.3  Heat from the thermonuclear reaction is harnessed using advanced thermoelectric converters and magnetohydrodynamic generators to generate electrical power and also replaces burning jet fuel as a means of heating up intake air to provide thrust, enabling the engines to produce more thrust than a conventional jet turbine and simultaneously cooling the reactor.  They're much less efficient when operating in space4, because they're operating more like a fusion plasma rocket and venting the plasma from the reaction out of the engines to produce thrust.  That's why, in space, they often mount conformal fuel tanks to increase the fuel available to the compact thermonuclear reactors in the engines5 and supplement those engines with hybrid or liquid-fuel rockets.

 

 

 

8 hours ago, Master Dex said:

The OTEC reactors can fuse almost anything if I recall actually, so fuel is a pretty liberal concept.

[...]

Honestly, hydrogen, even cryogenically doesn't pack as well as other things so if the engines can fuse other things one has to wonder if it is the simplicity or abundance of that fuel that drives its usage.

I suspect it has more to do with the number of stages a fusion reaction can be pushed through using hydrogen as a starting point.  You can wring a LOT of energy out of multistage hydrogen fusion that way.  (It may also be somewhat advantageous from a logistical standpoint, reducing the number of types of fuel a ship or base needs to stock since it can also be used as fuel in liquid-fueled rockets.)

 

 

1. Amusingly, the oldest iterations of Macross's technical materials gives the name of the control system that moderates the GIC system inside the engines as the MAtrix of Gravity and Inertia Control... MAGIC, for short.
2. Using the Proton-Proton Chain at the very least, and possibly the CNO Cycle.  Continuous compression like that also makes the reaction more efficient by reducing the amount of fuel that isn't taking part in the reaction.
3. Available data suggests the VF-1 is consuming its slush hydrogen at a rate of approximately 0.28 milliliters per second per engine, or roughly 2.0143 liters per hour, giving it approximately 700 hours of continuous operating time in atmosphere.
4. Available data suggests the first generation of thermonuclear reaction turbine engines consumed its fuel 4,200 times faster in space... at about 2,350 milliliters per second.  The same amount of fuel that would have provided 700 hours of flight in atmosphere only lasts ten minutes at max thrust in space.
5. The VF-1's FAST Pack extends the VF-1's onboard fuel capacity to almost 5x what it can carry in its basic configuration, greatly extending the maximum operating time of its engines in space.

Edited by Seto Kaiba

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5 hours ago, JB0 said:

That'd be a fun wrinkle in the setting, if the special forces Valks had a lithium tank for enhanced performance.

Odds are there's probably at least a little lithium in the reaction as it is, as a consequence of decaying Beryllium-7 produced by fusing Helium-3 and Helium-4.

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Greetings one more time. After a week and a half of work they give us the opportunity to write again to thank them for the answers they wrote, to the doubts they had. With these data I have a more accurate understanding of the function of nuclear turbines, created in the macross universe. Thank you.

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Now if we could really harness alien tech and apply this to similar "mobile suit" mobility and modular transformation, then the battlefield would see see a quantum evolution in the art of warfare. 

This should end the need to use tactical nukes and just allow for old school hand to hand infantry type combat leaving the surrounding area usable for the conquering force.

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15 hours ago, fenrir72 said:

Now if we could really harness alien tech and apply this to similar "mobile suit" mobility and modular transformation, then the battlefield would see see a quantum evolution in the art of warfare. 

Militarily speaking, giant robots of any stripe make fairly impractical weapons.  That's why mecha anime generally has to come up with some reason, as part of its setting, that "awesome, but impractical" giant fighting robots are a tactical necessity.  Otherwise it would be a lot simpler, cheaper, and more effective to apply that advanced technology to more conventional weapons like tanks or fighter planes.

As in Macross, the most common excuse in mecha anime is that there is some threat (alien, monster, etc.) that is big and mobile enough to render conventional weapons ineffective and make giant robots advantageous.  Then, of course, there's the ones that use the excuse that giant robots started out as construction equipment that was then hastily militarized (as in Gundam or Mobile Police Patlabor).  Some just ignore the question entirely, like Southern Cross or Code Geass.  There are a few rare ones where the impracticality of robots is openly acknowledged but they're used anyway because the future tech behind them is somehow not readily applicable to other platforms yet like Full Metal Panic!.  Personally, my favorite excuse for giant fighting robots is the one from Five Star Stories... that being impractical is the entire point; that by restricting warfare to impractical giant robots that fight only against each other the collateral damage is kept to a minimum so the people in authority can have their territorial pissing matches without getting Joe Average involved.

 

15 hours ago, fenrir72 said:

This should end the need to use tactical nukes and just allow for old school hand to hand infantry type combat leaving the surrounding area usable for the conquering force.

It's too expensive to ever catch on... it's way easier to just bomb the crap out of each other from afar using guided weapons and so on.  That's why so many mecha shows exist in settings where a convenient macguffin renders missile guidance ineffective... huge robots are large, slow targets that only get larger and slower the better armored they are.

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10 minutes ago, Seto Kaiba said:

Personally, my favorite excuse for giant fighting robots is the one from Five Star Stories... that being impractical is the entire point; that by restricting warfare to impractical giant robots that fight only against each other the collateral damage is kept to a minimum so the people in authority can have their territorial pissing matches without getting Joe Average involved.

This is also the general premise for Heavy Object with the added point that the Objects' armour was pretty much nuke proof. Pretty much in the case that it took about half a dozen to make a decent dent.

Then of course during the series two guys take out out a few, on foot.

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3 hours ago, Focslain said:

This is also the general premise for Heavy Object with the added point that the Objects' armour was pretty much nuke proof. Pretty much in the case that it took about half a dozen to make a decent dent.

Then of course during the series two guys take out out a few, on foot.

To be fair the show treats that action with the appropriate amount of consequence since it upset the balance of how war in that world worked, plus it took quite a bit of effort and engineering know how to find such unique ways of destroying those monster machines, so most were unsure if it was dumb luck for a bit... until they kept doing it.

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The background material for Gasaraki admits that bipedal combat vehicles are inefficient and wouldn’t be pursued in a real military... so they kinda amplify its mobility to outrun an MBT on a rough-terrain course and allow them to “climb” walls using boosted hydraulics and powder-enhanced rappelling winches. 

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4 hours ago, Master Dex said:

To be fair the show treats that action with the appropriate amount of consequence since it upset the balance of how war in that world worked, plus it took quite a bit of effort and engineering know how to find such unique ways of destroying those monster machines, so most were unsure if it was dumb luck for a bit... until they kept doing it.

The franchise also shows that they're using highly unconventional tactics. It is also implied that some of those tactics have been intentionally ignored by the top brass to protect the Objects' reputation of invincibility.

But mostly, it is the Death Star problem. Once you've determined starfighters can't get to the thermal exhaust port, you get sloppy in protecting it.

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There’s a guy in this universe who used his fighter to punch a Vajra so hard that it exploded.  Just saying.

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6 hours ago, Einherjar said:

There’s a guy in this universe who used his fighter to punch a Vajra so hard that it exploded.  Just saying.

All right, who gave G Gundam's Domon a VF pilot license?!

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18 hours ago, JB0 said:

All right, who gave G Gundam's Domon a VF pilot license?!

I'd buy that crossover for a dollar! ^_^ 

 

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8 hours ago, Chronocidal said:

I'd buy that crossover for a dollar! ^_^ 

 

JH0hjiy.jpg

Space Gandam Vwee has you halfway there.

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