Stellar engineering: Dyson spheres, Niven rings, and maybe something ambitious

Continuing the discussion from Alien "megastructure" mystery deepens, but probably isn't a Dyson sphere:

Post here if you want to remodel your spare solar system galaxy or supercluster. Go big or go home.


Disassemble the stars down to red dwarf size for longevity, use the excess matter to build additional red dwarfs and physical support infrastructure for your civilization, and move all of the stars as close together as you can manage without collisions or chaotic gravitational perturbations, in order to minimize speed-of-light transmission delays. Use whichever black holes you gather as part of the process for producing antimatter via Hawking radiation, and carefully feed in an accretion disk if you need heavier elements, which will fuse into higher-order nuclei as the disk approaches the event horizon. Used with extreme care, can also be useful for slingshot launches of spacecraft.

End result, you have something that looks like a globular cluster made of red dwarfs with the mass of a major galaxy, optimized for long-duration occupation.


Tick the “State Research” and “Military” sliders all the way up, “Religion” and “Culture” all the way down, and then invade the nice people around @bibliophile20’s star/sphere/thing.

And ffs avoid the damned Guardian over at Orion. He’s a real hothead.


Ah, so you’re playing as the Kzinti, then? Are you ready to learn the Kzinti Lesson?


I recall reading an article in Analog which discussed such things…

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Since I just noticed this thread, I’ll drop in the concept of serially nested Dyson spheres, for “Matrioshka Brains”.

This is for after everybody’s gone virtual, uploaded themselves as software, or been replaced by hostile AIs, figuring they no longer need physical space to live in… and then variously realize they need someplace to run all that aggressive and expansive software, and a power source to run it.

So you start wrapping the sun or the star in question inside multiple spheres - or rings, or partial spheres, initially - of pure computing substrate, each of which is soaking up power from the inside and radiating the waste heat from computation on the other, and running off the temperature differential, and when computing space gets cramped, you put another one outside that one, picking up the radiated heat from the inner one as its power source and radiating to space on the outside. If you keep doing this, you end up with a structure that’s converting nearly every last joule of energy from the star into computation.

I first ran across the concept in Charlie Stross’s Accelerando, but it originated with an inventor named Robert Bradbury.


This is an interesting bit of thinking juice.

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