View Full Version : Has anyone thought about creatures would be on high gravity planets?


dinokg
07-01-03, 02:45 PM
A creature on a planet with a thousand times earths gravity would have about a thousand times the strenghth of and earth creature and vice versa. Humans would have a thousand times there strength on a moon like Phobos. (It's one of Mar's two moons) Its has 1 thousandth the gravity of earth so it you can lift 100 pounds on earth you could lift 100,000 pounds on Phobos.

It would be like having super powers.:D

eburacum45
07-01-03, 06:35 PM
Yes, well there are a few problems with living on high gravity planets- you would hardly be able to stand up for a start.

Maybe a 1.5g world would produce aliens built like weightlifters, who would be extravagantly strong if relocated to earth-

but any gravity greater than that would require a radical redesign, no doubt ruling out erect biped like humans.
A four-legged, six-legged or multiple-legged creature with legs like an elephant's, yet only a few feet tall-
these creatures would be very strong, certainly, but very alien to our eyes.
Used to a thick atmosphere they might even suffer decompression effects on our world-
possibly even rupture or explode;
although they would almost certainly not be oxygen breathers, as high gee worlds retain too much hydrogen for free oxygen to develop.

If you are talking about a thousand time's earths gravity- well, you are almost in the realms of the neutron star, here, and any inhabitant would probably be bizarre and a fraction of an inch tall.
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Zero
07-02-03, 09:40 AM
Their body's materials would be fundamentally different frmo ours.

Maybe they would develop very thick, rocky sort of coatings....like organic stone, almost?

Vortexx
07-05-03, 12:51 PM
Bird like creatures would be unlikely to develope, Water based floating fish would have a much better change in various gravity conditions.

Also, for landbased creatures, natures evolution would probably prefer creatures with a very high strength to bodyweight ratio, such as ANTlike creatures etc...

Redoubtable
07-05-03, 06:29 PM
I would guess that the extreme gravity, and consequently super-dense matter, would preclude the emergence of sentient bipeds, or any mobile organism, for that matter.

Though I suppose the possibility of any life at all might be eliminated by these adverse conditions, I consider it probable that plant-life, or fungus, could subsist in preponderance in such a "heavy" environment.

Thomo
07-07-03, 06:28 PM
would a spherical shape be the best way to overcome extreme gravity? or a pyramid maybe

Fafnir665
07-07-03, 08:53 PM
Originally posted by Thomo
would a spherical shape be the best way to overcome extreme gravity? or a pyramid maybe


Flat and spread out would probably be the least strained one.

Clockwood
07-08-03, 07:57 PM
Land critters with exoskeletons would have to shed their old carapaces underwater when they want to grow. They would otherwise have their unhardened shells crushed by their own weight.

Redoubtable
07-08-03, 08:47 PM
Originally posted by Fafnir665
Flat and spread out

I think primitive flora and fungoid parasites would be the most likely candidates.

Specialist
07-09-03, 06:53 PM
After reading this thread and doing a little calculation it turns out that with a big enough planet, it's escape velocity will equal the speed of light if it has a radius and mass 72,00 times the size of earth's.

Of course before that happens it will collapse under it's own gravity.
Imagine if it could sustain it self, forming a livable environment on the surface. They would never be able to escape their planet :eek:



> # Rmv^2=2GMm
> # G=6.672*10^-11 N m^2 kg^-2
> # R=6378.137 km
> # v=c=3*10^8 km/s
> restart: Digits=100:
> c=sqrt(2*G*M/R);
G M
c = sqrt(2) sqrt(---)
R

> mr:=(5.976*10^24)/(6378.137):
> solve(c=sqrt(2*G*r),r); // assume escaple velocity is c, r is m/r ratio

2
c
1/2 ----
G

> 'mr'=0.5*(3*10^8)^2/(6.672*10^(-11)); // earth's mass to radius ratio

27
mr = .6744604317 10

> solve(x*mr=0.5*(3*10^8)^2/(6.672*10^(-11)),x);

719846.2239

> 'Radius'=6378.137*719846.2239;

10
Radius = .4591277835 10

Fafnir665
07-09-03, 07:20 PM
What if black holes are not as we understand them, and life lives on their infinitesimly small surfcae, what would their sky look like?

eburacum45
07-09-03, 09:23 PM
The event horizon is only a one way barrier- you would still be able to see the universe in all directions, although the light would be strangely altered (blue shifted IIRC)
and distorted by the black hole's rotation (if any).

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spoilsport
07-30-03, 12:55 PM
Bird like creatures would be unlikely to develope, Water based floating fish would have a much better change in various gravity conditions.

Are you sure? One would think the increased air density would create enough buoyancy to cancel out increased gravity, but I may be wrong. Hey, that makes me think of something interesting though, some kind of floating "fish" that inhales and exhales to change it's density (thus the position in the air it floats at. That would be sweet.

river-wind
07-31-03, 09:39 AM
maybe the things would switch over to a fluid-sac based movement system, instead of muscules. something similar to what spiders use. That would reduce the body weight while alowing for stronger power output.

dinokg
07-31-03, 12:38 PM
Hears something else that might happen on a high gravity planet.

The creatures might some how evolve a natural version of anti-gravity!

splunk
08-02-03, 09:35 PM
creatures here already have that. we call them "birds"

dinokg
08-03-03, 11:31 AM
Birds don't use anti-gravity to fly they use their wings the make a strong enough air current for flight. :)

But what I'm talking about is a natural form of anti gravity. Even though it hasn't evolved on earth it could evolve elsewhere. Anyways animals like dolphins developed sonar way before people invented it so why not the same thing with anti-gravity?

splunk
08-03-03, 11:38 AM
lol true enough

but if the planet is REALLY 1000 times earth gravity, it seems a poor place to develop natural anti-grav abilities, if im thinkin of the same kinda anti-grav.

u mean like... hovercars? cuz im thinkin "morph" from Treasure Planet

dinokg
08-03-03, 02:49 PM
Hovering would probably be better than anti-gravity or regular flying. It would especially be good with a flat creature.

All it would need two do would have some type of propulsion system like regular breathing in and out air and it could move around rapidly!:)

splunk
08-03-03, 04:46 PM
that would hafta be one hell of a set of lungs for a creature thats supposed to be flat... (or air sacs or whatever)

the breathing thing works for clams, but we're talkin non-aquatic atmosphere here... im thinkin more like a helium balloon kinda deal. round and bloated as opposed to flat

dinokg
08-03-03, 05:09 PM
Ballon type creatures could work but the best type would be a mixture.

For instance you could have a flat slug like creature the moves on land to eat and then if it needs to go somewhere for more food or to escape preditors it could just inflate and float to a new area!

It could be called the balloon slug.:D

Cynthia
08-04-03, 08:46 AM
<u>If</u> there are living things on the moon and they come to Earth,theywould face the problem of too much gravity too but I suppose as the time they stay on the Earth grow,they would soon be able to adapt to Earth's gravity.:bugeye:

troj
08-04-03, 09:51 AM
this subjuct contains a number of variating factors such found in a scientific experiment; With the sketchy 'scientific' element of personal belief .................................................' are we alone?'


basically, since the dawn of man we have questioned our isolation in the universe.

The thought of evoloution igniting another plannet millions of miles away isnt to much of a dry cwacka to swallow!

being aware of this thought, consider the random-ness of the universe, what are the chances of all physical attributes defining that planet and its 'laws' being equal in strenght and proportion to ours?........minimal right!

so lets refresh.....................

we adknowledge the fact that life is far to complex to just accept and that evouloution is a 'gift' of some variaty.

we adknowledge the fact that this universe is older bigger wiser smarter than all of us.

we adknowledge that it is ignorant to assume we are existance in its only form.




So applying these concepts... Assume:




Yes there are other planets.

Yes evoloution can commence on other planets.

what would life be like upon these planets?


Unsubstanciated comment: These life forms would logically evolve through there own course of evoloution.


scientific fact: (SUMMARIZATION)


Once a few 'head out the sand' concepts are considered the logical truth is easy enough to bear.....


Evoloution will grow to fit its basic habitat.........earth had sun and water.................Thus using O2 + co2 for a basic fuel for life forms..........


where as on some plannets a high nitrogen atmoshphere could be accounted thus the internal organs will differ to accomidate different life processes. plus mabye another varient factor such as a .125 gravity equivilent...thus resulting in mabye stronger/longer limbs due to the excess strain inflicted upon the movement.


Its only after typing for an hr or so you loose your point, and although Im sure I had one when I started....im dam'd if I know where the buGG£'s run off 2!!!!

N E WAYZ THESE ARE PRETTY MUCH MY VIEWS ON EVOLOUTION/OTHER LIFE. > I await comments

p.s I RUSHED THIS 'COS IM AT WORK...DO'T DIS MY GRAMMER OR SPELLING.....................


http://www.jewishworldreview.com/images/alien.jpg

dinokg
08-04-03, 12:02 PM
All the stuff you talked about is true except the part about .125 gravity.

.125 gravity would be very low so it wouldn't hold much of an atmosphere. Also the creatures would be larger but weaker than there equivalents on earth. Also there would be real small and real large creatures just like on earth.

On a planet like this bug like creatures could grow HUGE!

splunk
08-04-03, 06:09 PM
On a planet like this bug like creatures could grow HUGE!

correct me if im wrong, since my source is the movie Mimic, but I thought bugs couldnt get large because of lacking transport systems? No organs?


where as on some plannets a high nitrogen atmoshphere could be accounted thus the internal organs will differ to accomidate different life processes. plus mabye another varient factor such as a .125 gravity equivilent...thus resulting in mabye stronger/longer limbs due to the excess strain inflicted upon the movement.

In keeping with the lessons of the holy book (DUNE), we should remember that the more hostile the location, the more badass the locals will be. (Aint nobody touchin those Fremen) You know what'd be a cool experiment...

We could sow the seeds of life on some totally inhospitable planet... Like, maybe a world with increased gravity, or unusually strong solar radiation. Then just put millions of bacteria on different regions of the planet. We could be the silent watchers... like the aliens on SciFi channel. Of course, the net result would take billions of years to obtain... and the results themselves would be so badass they'd probably kill us all.

On the other hand, just reading what I just wrote makes me lend more credit to the theories of those crackpots who say life here is from other planets...
>theme from twilight zone<

dinokg
08-04-03, 08:11 PM
I think the reason that bugs can't get huge on earth is because they have an exoskeleton and wouldn't be able to support their own weight if they were really large.

splunk
08-04-03, 08:25 PM
damn you, scifi channel! you've foiled me again!

ElectricFetus
08-04-03, 08:35 PM
Yes I have, they would be smaller and flatter, you see more slug, starfish, millipede body design (more lags the better) after twice earths gravity there is not much of a chance of a surface anymore the planet will most likely become a gas giant and we would see sky based life (balloon like creatures)

Cynthia
08-05-03, 02:56 AM
I agree first of all we are not even sure if there are living things on other planets (because the fact is that we really do not even know) or I might say stars as well cause now we are not sure,stars seem impossible but there might be,different living things has different adaptation,we are unable to live on stars now cause of the water and air problem but maybe living things on living on the stars might not have any of this problem,I really think that maybe there are really living things on stars or other planets and if there is living things on other planets,I though they might be interested in knowing if there are living things on other planet apart from thiers.

splunk
08-05-03, 10:10 AM
we are unable to live on stars now cause of the water and air problem but maybe living things on living on the stars might not have any of this problem

i think our problem, and any other organic life form's problem with life on stars would be the heat and radiation. i can imagine ethereal aliens on a star, or maybe the Pheonix (X-Men). :D

but the point is evolving enhanced strenghts from tougher environments, and although admittedly a star is about as tough an environment as it comes, it may be TOO tough for single celled organisms.

Cynthia
08-05-03, 10:20 AM
I am just thinking what if the living thing on stars are totally different from us?We need oxygen maybe they need hydrogen,we might think that it is too difficult to live on stars but maybe they think otherwise,they might think that it is simply impossible for living things to live on Earth?

I mean if there are really living things on stars then they must be adapted to live on stars as we are adapted to live on Earth,I mean we are not able to live on stars cause we are not able to adapt to the stars enviroment and more but the living things on stars might be adapted to living on stars.

An example the heat and radiation are too strong for us too survive but imagine there are living things on Pluto,if they come to Earth,they will face the problem of strong heat and radiation and they night not even survive cause if they live on Pluto,the heat and radiation they recieve are what we consider weak but they are not at least to what the pluto living things think,it is just like if we go to Mercury.I mean no offence by what I say :)

river-wind
08-05-03, 01:13 PM
the problem with that is twofold:
1)our life requires oxygen because of it's ability to form and break chemical bonds. an-aerobic organisms don't use oxygen at all, however, they get less than 50% of the available NRG out of a reaction because of this.

2)the heat and radiation in a star would kill us because it would break down our chemical bonds. so unless the life could figure out a method for a)preventing the bond from breaking or b)fixing the bonds faster than they break, life couldn't sustain itself given the physics of chemistry. Going from nothing to full life given one of these two requirements make this seem unlikely.

However, there are species of bacteria which have learned to live on the crusted caps of anti-bacterial solutions, so you never know.


I find the hovering thing very interesting. if the gravity were stronger, then the density of the atmosphere would be greater, possibly allowing for beings who never touch the ground, but swim around in the air. they could easily regulate their height by increasing or decreasing the size of an air-filled sack; using the differences in density to change altitude, just like fish use an airbladder.

splunk
08-05-03, 01:56 PM
i am by no means an astronomer (with any luck ill get a major in bio :cool: ) but i would like to pose a hypothetical situation

If Bob--and let us say for the purposes of this hypothertical situation Bob is completely invulnerable to the hostile conditions of space-- were to travel to Jupiter, the giant gaseous planet of our solar system, he would find no "surface." If he tried to walk on this planet he would be unable to do so.

however, wouln't he eventually reach a point where the gas became so dense he would be in effect "hovering"? or, perhaps a more appropriate wording, "floating"? there should be a point where his body's density = the density of the gas he's suspended in, right?

so... for all intents and purposes... aliens living on planet such as jupiter, or any planet whos gravity is so great it forms a gas giant, wouldnt even need to be balloons. they could be shaped like, say... silly putty. to get higher, theyd have to spread out, and lower their density, to get lower, theyd have to condense themselves.

as i said, im no astronomer. just my idle musings --^

Cynthia
08-06-03, 01:31 AM
Well,I really don't know:) but why should I care it still doesn't effect me:D

splunk
08-06-03, 08:54 AM
or... does it?

dinokg
08-06-03, 11:13 AM
Actually the silly putty creature you mentioned is possible.

You could have a creature that has millions of micro air sacks that can move into different possitions using its puttyness.

If made like this it could expand alot and also compact it self just like you mentioned.

It would kind of be like and evolved balloon creature!

Also do to being like putty it could make its body into whatever shape it wants so it could potentially have hand like things if it wanted to!

It this creature evolved intelegence it would be a prime canidate for a civilization producer and eventually space travel!:)

splunk
08-06-03, 01:54 PM
and being on such a high gravity planet, it would be pretty strong... someone call speilberg! we got a winner here!

dinokg
08-06-03, 07:08 PM
Hears some more putty creature thoughts.

It could also have chameleon type abilites. Since it can already change its shape all it whould need to do is change its color in order to look like just about anything!

So in total all the things a putty creature on a gas planet could do are fly, have super strength, morph its shape, be a chameleon, plus grow, and shrink!

Not to bad for a putty creature. :)

river-wind
08-07-03, 10:44 AM
OT: yey! fetus found a new jar :D

troj
08-07-03, 10:56 AM
it could also evolve DINOKG...and that opens infinate possibilities! and enviroments can evolve! so the only limitation is time

splunk
08-07-03, 11:12 AM
hmmm... evolving putty...

i bet ud wind up with one of those gaseous/ethereal aliens from Star Trek. You know, those cheesy special effect ones that kind of just hover.


oh, and congrats on the jar, fetus

dinokg
08-07-03, 12:40 PM
Yup it would continue to evolve.

Do to it being on a gas planet it might eventualy evolve the ability to live in space if it lived high in the atmosphere.

Also if it fully lived off of light energy from its planets sun it could move around its solar system and colonize the planets in its solar system without even developing a space ship!

Then who knows what it would do.:cool:

troj
08-08-03, 05:19 AM
yeah it might even learn some biomedical-science skillz n make some lil 'peeps' n plop 'em on a planet for kicks!!! LMFAO YOU LAD!!!

curioucity
08-08-03, 09:54 AM
Well, I'd say that 'amoeboid' creatures would suit high gravity environment.... with a catch: if the 'amoeba' were to be large, they'd look like water-filled plastic bag;)

Rom
08-30-05, 12:40 AM
I don't think helium would be the Gas of Choice although it may be but hydrogen gives maximum lift and is commonly found in all organic materials, helium does not react well with most things, so the hydrogen can be created by chemical reaction to lift them higher into the higher regions of the atmosphere where they can feed on the suns rays and absorb more hydrogen to react into solids, Photosynthesis ? when their mass increases they drop lower into the denser atmosphere to absorb other heavier gases like nitrogen carbon dioxide and the like

Nebula_Gray
08-26-11, 01:02 PM
One has to consider the conditions for a planet to reach high gravity. At ten Earth masses, a planet of average density would have less than three times Earth's gravity. Jupiter is 330 times Earth's mass, and the surface gravity is only 4 times Earth's, due to its lower density (and by 'surface,' I mean the altitude where the atmosphere is the same as the Earth's). So the practical upper limit for "high gravity" with solid worlds is set at 3 Earth gravities, similar to what is experienced on the Gravitron at the amusement park.

Life evolving in 2 to 3 g's would be subject to many factors. For starters, trees (or their equivalent) would be shorter and have fewer branches, and might have spongy leaves for increased surface area absorbing more sunlight. There would still be the record-breakers, such as taller trees evolving to keep their leaves out of reach of gluttonous herbivores. Such tall trees would have a larger diameter-to-height ratio for added support. Also, if the planet's primary star is fainter than the sun, taller trees would evolve to catch more sunlight. Since larger planets tend to have greater winds, pollination would not rely so heavily on flying animals. Flight would not be significantly hindered, as the greater winds would compensate for the added effort to get off the ground. Just as well, the fliers would not have much altitude to overcome to get to their nests, although cliff-dwellers would be a different story.

The water-to-oxygen ratio would be higher, as such a world would retain more hydrogen. Deep in the ocean, the low oxygen density would be compensated by the higher pressure. Hemocyanin (and possibly vanabin or an iridium-based compound) would be more commonly used as an oxygen carrier by animals than hemoglobin. Animals near the water's surface may evolve a symbiosis with photosynthesizing algae in their exposed gills, allowing for a more efficient and direct method of exchanging carbon dioxide for oxygen.

Land invertebrates would likely be amphibious, as water would aid in shedding their exoskeletons without damaging the soft, newly formed exterior. Many invertebrates would likely spend their entire larval stage underwater, similar to mosquitoes. Additionally, the invertebrates would be smaller than the Earth variety on average.

As for the mammalian equivalent (mammalien?), movements would be slow and deliberate relative to Earth mammals, most would be bulky with short legs, and more species would be plantigrade as opposed to digitigrade. The brain would likely be in a reinforced rib cage, only having a head to house its eyes, ears and olfactory organs. The neck and possibly skull would be made of cartilage, allowing them to heal faster. Lungs would be chambered and breathing would have separate nostrils for inhaling and exhaling, allowing a constant stream of oxygen to the taxed muscles. Instead of a diaphragm, this constant pumping could be regulated directly by the heart(s). The digestive system would be more redundant, ensuring the maximum nutrition is extracted from food.

As for sentient life, the frequent storms would hinder progress on artificial flight. If the howl of the winds is too great to convey speech, languages may start as hand signs. Lifespans may be limited to forty years because of the heart/lung organs metabolizing so much. Electric and wireless technology would see rapid progress as methods are sought to filter out interference from storms. The first test of the nuclear bomb would be enough to end a world war as opposed to its first two uses, as radiation would be spread to both sides by the winds. Having more surface area, the planet would retain its continents in the same hemisphere as pressure from other tectonic plates inhibited their migration, resulting in more connected civilizations.

Orleander
09-01-11, 05:57 PM
wouldn't they look like our deep sea creatures? And worms.

Me-Ki-Gal
09-01-11, 06:10 PM
wouldn't they look like our deep sea creatures? And worms.

That is a great conception Orle. Yea the heave pressure of deep sea life

Wow that guys guys post looks like he could one of em

Pete
09-01-11, 10:23 PM
A creature on a planet with a thousand times earths gravity would have about a thousand times the strenghth of and earth creature and vice versa. Humans would have a thousand times there strength on a moon like Phobos. (It's one of Mar's two moons) Its has 1 thousandth the gravity of earth so it you can lift 100 pounds on earth you could lift 100,000 pounds on Phobos.

It would be like having super powers.:D

Dragon's Egg (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dragon%27s_Egg#The_neutron_star) is a 1980 SF novel about intelligent life evolving on the surface of a neutron star at 67 billion g.

Cheela have about the same mass as humans, are about 5mm across and 0.5mm high. They live a million times faster than humans, with a lifespan of around 40 minutes.

wlminex
09-01-11, 10:50 PM
What if black holes are not as we understand them, and life lives on their infinitesimly small surfcae, what would their sky look like?

I'll hypothisize that in "their sky" (i.e., visible space) everything would be observed as expanding away from their vantage point - not unlike what we 'see' in our own sky.

wlminex

Fraggle Rocker
09-02-11, 02:10 PM
A creature on a planet with a thousand times earth's gravity would have about a thousand times the strenghth of an earth creature and vice versa.Read the novel Dragon's Egg by Robert L. Forward. It's about life developing on a neutron star, where the gravity is sixty-seven billion times as strong as ours.

Forward (1932-2002) was a physicist and an aerospace engineer. The science in his writing is meticulous, and has been widely praised both for its accuracy and the quite reasonable extrapolations of how life could develop in such an environment. For example, the creatures sense the electromagnetic field of the star and use it for navigation. Also, their metabolism operates at a much faster pace than ours and they progress from the Stone Age to the Electronic Age during one human lifetime.

He dramatizes this in an early scene. The creatures see the electromagnetic signals from the ship of the earth explorers, but because of the time speed differential, they see them as individual pulses, like smoke signals. They realize that it's probably communication, so they build their analog of a "fire" and use their analog of a "blanket" to send back similar signals. The humans are mystified, and then even more so when they analyze the signals and discover that they are not perfect pulses but were obviously crafted one-at-a-time "by hand."

There were several sequels to Dragon's Egg, which is one of my all-time favorite books.

orcot
09-04-11, 03:54 PM
It really depends on how high the gravity gets. Microscopic life would probably never notice, ants also could carry a lot of weight. the higher gravity would make movement more difficult so animals would have a smaller habitat. They could be smaller then earth life but that's far from certain having more oxygen in the atmosphere and more energetic food allows for some pretty big animals. Again the difficulty moving will favour detecting possible predators more then the agility to out run them, the same goes for detecting water and intresting habitats. For predators when brute force fails they have to get smarter. Hunting in groups and using tactics.

Fraggle Rocker
09-05-11, 11:10 AM
It really depends on how high the gravity gets. Microscopic life would probably never notice, ants also could carry a lot of weight. the higher gravity would make movement more difficult so animals would have a smaller habitat. They could be smaller then earth life but that's far from certain having more oxygen in the atmosphere and more energetic food allows for some pretty big animals. Again the difficulty moving will favour detecting possible predators more then the agility to out run them, the same goes for detecting water and intresting habitats. For predators when brute force fails they have to get smarter. Hunting in groups and using tactics.Remember that muscle strength is proportional to the cross-sectional area of the muscles, a quadratic function of a creature's linear dimensions. Whereas mass is proportional to the creature's volume, a cubic function of linear dimensions.

So as a creature shrinks to half its original linear dimensions, its volume and mass decrease by a factor of eight, whereas its muscle strength only decreases by a factor of four. This is why, on our planet, smaller animals have astounding strength: leaping many times their own height (grasshoppers), carrying objects larger than they are (ants), bouncing all the way down a steep mountain and then casually hopping away (some tiny frogs in, I think, South America).

So there may be a scale for living creatures to survive even in gravity that would crush us.

Forward was a rigorous scientist who was very careful with the laws of physics. The creatures on the neutron star in Dragon's Egg are the size of sesame seeds, and their metabolism operates at a million times the speed of ours.

Trippy
09-06-11, 01:35 PM
***Moderator Note***

Two offtopic posts deleted.

Nebula_Gray
09-09-11, 09:53 AM
Read the novel Dragon's Egg by Robert L. Forward. It's about life developing on a neutron star, where the gravity is sixty-seven billion times as strong as ours.

Forward (1932-2002) was a physicist and an aerospace engineer. The science in his writing is meticulous, and has been widely praised both for its accuracy and the quite reasonable extrapolations of how life could develop in such an environment. For example, the creatures sense the electromagnetic field of the star and use it for navigation. Also, their metabolism operates at a much faster pace than ours and they progress from the Stone Age to the Electronic Age during one human lifetime.

He dramatizes this in an early scene. The creatures see the electromagnetic signals from the ship of the earth explorers, but because of the time speed differential, they see them as individual pulses, like smoke signals. They realize that it's probably communication, so they build their analog of a "fire" and use their analog of a "blanket" to send back similar signals. The humans are mystified, and then even more so when they analyze the signals and discover that they are not perfect pulses but were obviously crafted one-at-a-time "by hand."

There were several sequels to Dragon's Egg, which is one of my all-time favorite books.


Life on a neutron star is somewhat off-topic (i.e. high-gravity planets), but the concept is intriguing. On the surface of a neutron star you've got protons from objects impacting it. Perhaps the strong and weak nuclear forces between the protons and neutrons could replace the electrochemical interactions found in lower-gravity life. Such interactions would take place faster than chemical ones, resulting in shortened lifespans and quicker perception.

I would imagine that gravity would hardly be a factor in the personal lives of such lifeforms, as the dominate direction of energy propagation would be lateral. Any sentience that would evolve would likely only perceive two dimensions and remain ignorant of the stars and galaxies surrounding them. They would perceive their environment mainly through mechanical processes instead of light, and possibly comprehend quantum mechanics before classical mechanics.

Reproduction would be radically different from anything possible in low-g life. Perhaps genetic information could be encoded on the wavefunction of a few nucleons, which would influence the way in which surrounding nucleons form around it, eventually growing into a complete body.

Since the early universe gave rise to massive stars that collapsed into neutron stars, and the fact that life would be several orders of magnitude faster than us, such life is statistically more likely to evolve than low-g life if it is possible at all. A society on a neutron star may take the equivalent of a billion years of technological development to simply send a satellite into orbit, as it would be like us sending a probe into a fourth spatial dimension. Until we are at a level that we can observe neutron stars up-close, we'll never observe such microscopic marvels.

Kind of makes me sad when I think of black holes. Think of all the lives and progress that would sink into oblivion each time a neutron star collapsed. :bawl: