Re: [nbos] Atmospheres.
"Mike Oliver"
Tue Jan 30th, 2007
Yeah, I thought that would be it. To get the chemical symbols you want,
you should be able to find somewhere on the net that lets you put in a
name and gives the symbol in response - or at least I would have thought
there would be something.

I'll try to help if you send me a list of chemical names (not too many,
though). The percentages for any world other than Earth are really up to
you as a GM. It might be worth reading a few papers on how planetary
atmospheres are formed. Except for gas giants, they are usually the
result of the nature of their sun and how it developed, volcanic
activity and whatever life might have appeared on their surface. So,
Hydrogen, Helium, Nitrogen and some of the simpler compound gases
(ammonia, CO2, methane and the like) would come from the original
development of the world (which is how they get to be on gas giants);
sulphur gases, probably more nitrogen and methane etc. from vulcanism
(you could check exactly what gases are produced this way on the net, I
suspect) whilst Carbon dioxide (CO2) is generated by animals (as is a
lot of methane) and Oxygen by plants. The act of sunlight on the
atmosphere also has an effect. As I said, it is a complex subject. I'm
not an expert but I have that dangerous thing - a little knowledge.



-----Original Message-----
[] On Behalf Of Dutton, Dennis L
Sent: 30 January 2007 13:06
Subject: Re: [nbos] Atmospheres.

Thanks. That's in the general direction I was asking.

I have World Builder's Handbook and most of the MegaTraveller stuff. I
haven't had a chance to look in MT but WBH has a discussion of the
effects of various chemicals (although, I'll have to look up the
chemical symbols to relate Traveller to AS). There is also an in-depth
discussion in one of the Journals of the Traveller's Aid Society (but
again with names and no symbols). I can look up the symbols but, what I
haven't seen anywhere, is a discussion on the percentages such as given
with AS and as you mentioned below.

Rather than a number of college degrees, I'm just looking for a rough
idea for reasonableness checks in a roleplaying game.

Cheers, Dennis
Game Master, Morning Garden
Play-by-Email Campaign

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Mike Oliver []
> Sent: Tuesday, January 30, 2007 7:55 AM
> To:
> Subject: Re: [nbos] Atmospheres...Was: Fine control on random
> systemgeneration?
> Wow, that's a question that you'd need degrees in
> biochemistry, physics and inorganic chemistry to determine.
> In simplified form, Earth has an Oxygen content of around
> 18%. Humans can tolerate less than this but I don't know what
> the lower limit might be. Standard air pressure is 14 pounds
> per square inch (known as 1 atmosphere) but, if you climb
> high mountains, it reduces considerably. Again, I don't know
> the human limitation and it will vary from individual to
> individual. Also, acclimatisation helps tolerance - for
> example sports carried out at great heights require the
> athletes to arrive weeks early to become used to the thinner
> atmosphere.
> I can't recall whether Traveller details more information in
> its MegaTraveller form or whether the World Builders Handbook
> has more info. I have both and will look it up for you.
> Corrosive materials are typically such gases as Chlorine
> (Cl2), Sulphur Dioxide SO2), Nitric Oxide (NO2), Hydrogen
> Chloride (HCl) - which becomes hydrochloric acid when
> dissolved in water - and a whole host of others. Indeed,
> oxygen might be considered corrosive if you think what it
> does to metals like iron. Many of these will be found in a
> "Tainted" atmosphere type as well; it's probably only the
> concentration that decides.
> When you say "noticeable", the question arises "by whom and
> how?" Some corrosive materials can be detected by smell
> before they become harmful to a human but are corrosive to
> other materials at lower concentrations than this - it tends
> to be a matter of exposure time as well.
> Finally, there are gaseous compounds that might not be
> classed as corrosive but are harmful - some organic
> (carbon-based) chemicals come into this category. Carbon
> Tetrachloride - a solvent - is corrosive to human lungs but
> not to many inorganic materials; Ether - (CH3CH2)2O - an
> old-fashioned anaesthetic, is corrosive to human lungs if
> used for a protracted time but would probably be classed as
> an "Exotic" gas in Traveller.
> That seems a bit sparse and generalised but you'll get the
> idea from what I've said, I guess. I'll come back to you on
> the MegaTraveller/WBH data as soon as I can.
> Cheers,
> Mike

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