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Telok

Gateway into space?

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I accidentally posted this in the other general forum, I realize that it's probably more relevant here. Here's the repost:

 

Okay, this little piece of simple physics hit me like a brick wall the other day.

 

Consider the fact that RJ is very good with obeying physical laws and general rules of common sense in his universe. In his web blogs, RJ has also specifically stated that, opening gateways across stellar distances is possible (if far beyond the knowledge of our 3rd age heroes).

 

So my question for everyone to discuss is this:

 

What would happen if you open a gateway into space? As far as we've been told about gateways, they're literally holes in the air which link two spaces together. The only barrier we've heard of yet on gateways is whatever prevents shadowspawn and/or artificial constructs (like Nym, mabye?) from crossing them.

 

If there is no atmospheric barrier at all, then it would mean by the laws of physics that if you opened a gateway into space, all the pressure of the Earth's atmosphere at that level would blow air (and anything else around) into the vacuum. This would have been quite a weapon in the War of Power. Why spend all that energy moving gateways (Deathgates) around killing shadowspawn when you can just blow them into space.

 

Obviously the insanely dangerous potential for something like this might even make it a sort of forbidden weapon, like baelfire. What would happen if you made a gateway large enough so that small material couldn't clog it, and you tied off the weave? Could the entire atmosphere be blown into space, eventually? Sounds about as nasty in some ways as the temporal paradoxes caused by baelfire.

 

Anyway, food for thought. It'd sure be nice if someone were to actually get an answer about this from Jordan. It seems like an obvious plot mechanic which could be used, unless there were some rule preventing it.

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I accidentally posted this in the other general forum, I realize that it's probably more relevant here. Here's the repost:

 

Okay, this little piece of simple physics hit me like a brick wall the other day.

 

Consider the fact that RJ is very good with obeying physical laws and general rules of common sense in his universe. In his web blogs, RJ has also specifically stated that, opening gateways across stellar distances is possible (if far beyond the knowledge of our 3rd age heroes).

 

So my question for everyone to discuss is this:

 

What would happen if you open a gateway into space? As far as we've been told about gateways, they're literally holes in the air which link two spaces together. The only barrier we've heard of yet on gateways is whatever prevents shadowspawn and/or artificial constructs (like Nym, mabye?) from crossing them.

 

If there is no atmospheric barrier at all, then it would mean by the laws of physics that if you opened a gateway into space, all the pressure of the Earth's atmosphere at that level would blow air (and anything else around) into the vacuum. This would have been quite a weapon in the War of Power. Why spend all that energy moving gateways (Deathgates) around killing shadowspawn when you can just blow them into space.

 

Obviously the insanely dangerous potential for something like this might even make it a sort of forbidden weapon, like baelfire. What would happen if you made a gateway large enough so that small material couldn't clog it, and you tied off the weave? Could the entire atmosphere be blown into space, eventually? Sounds about as nasty in some ways as the temporal paradoxes caused by baelfire.

 

Anyway, food for thought. It'd sure be nice if someone were to actually get an answer about this from Jordan. It seems like an obvious plot mechanic which could be used, unless there were some rule preventing it.

 

I don't think it works like that, simply because of when Rand chased Avi through the gateway into the blizzard. If you a gateway to a place experiencing intense winds and snow, shouldn't you feel that? If you don't, isn't that an indicator that there is some sort of barrier? It seems to me like there is some sort of barrier, because temp, wind, weather, etc, don't seem to pass through gateways, no matter how extreme the difference is between the two places.

 

Anyway, that's just a guess.

J

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Telok is right. There would be signifigant atmospheric differances between any two distant locations, and the lack of "wind" through a gateway indicates that there is some sort of barrier that prevents passage through the gateway if the pressure is not greater than the air pressure differances between the ends of the gateway.

 

I wonder if that holds true for an underwater gateway?

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Telok is right. There would be signifigant atmospheric differances between any two distant locations, and the lack of "wind" through a gateway indicates that there is some sort of barrier that prevents passage through the gateway if the pressure is not greater than the air pressure differances between the ends of the gateway.

 

I wonder if that holds true for an underwater gateway?

 

Theoretically, it would be pretty rare for there to be the same amount of atmospheric pressure in two locations, especially if altitude was different. Of course, a low pressure system in one area would be enough to change the balance.

 

I submit that if there was not some sort of barrier between the two locations separated by the gateway, there would be a breeze as air moved from the higher to lower pressure areas.

 

The only way this could be avoided would be if there was literally no difference in airpressure, and that would be really, really odd.

J

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It does work that way, there's several times it happens (say when Egwene's group travels to Tar Valon). It could happen, though it'd be like draining an ocean through a straw--in our world there's something like 10^26 TONS of air in our atmosphere. Channelers can do a lot of nasty things, how much of the power do you think it would take to make a lethal embolism...or cut the nerves in your spinal cord?

 

It think the ending of Gaiman's Neverwhere is an example of what this would be like.

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It does work that way, there's several times it happens (say when Egwene's group travels to Tar Valon). It could happen, though it'd be like draining an ocean through a straw--in our world there's something like 10^26 TONS of air in our atmosphere. Channelers can do a lot of nasty things, how much of the power do you think it would take to make a lethal embolism...or cut the nerves in your spinal cord?

 

It think the ending of Gaiman's Neverwhere is an example of what this would be like.

 

I don't have my books with me, and don't specifically remember your examples. You're saying there was wind present when they travelled?

 

I would think that in order for this theory to be true, there would almost always have to be a discharge of air from the side of the gate with the higher pressure to the side with the lower...Since that doesn't seem to be happening, that's why I concluded you couldn't open a gate into a vacuum as a weapon...

 

It is scifi/fantasy, and in reality RJ probably never thought too deeply about it, but you never know.

J

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Jedimuppet has a great point about air pressure which I hadn't considered. Unless you were at the exact same altitude and barometric pressure, there would be a breeze. This indicates some sort of barrier. We already know that there's--for lack of a better term--something in a gateway, because shadowspawn can't cross it. If it were truly and literally a simple bridging of two spaces, it would have no effect on anything crossing through it.

 

Given the idea that waygates most definitely have a barrier, it's not a stretch to believe there's some sort of ethereal barrier on gateways used for traveling.

 

Though I do find it odd that shadowspawn *can* travel through waygates--probably a bit of a plot device rewrite a Jordan's part, if you ask me. On the other hand--it's a magic system. How can you argue it? Jordan says shadowspawn can't Travel. My best guess is that he'd also say that air indeed does not cross through a gateway. *shrug* Interesting thought, though.

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Jedimuppet has a great point about air pressure which I hadn't considered. Unless you were at the exact same altitude and barometric pressure' date=' there would be a breeze. This indicates some sort of barrier. We already know that there's--for lack of a better term--something in a gateway, because shadowspawn can't cross it. If it were truly and literally a simple bridging of two spaces, it would have no effect on anything crossing through it.

 

Given the idea that waygates most definitely have a barrier, it's not a stretch to believe there's some sort of ethereal barrier on gateways used for traveling.

 

Though I do find it odd that shadowspawn *can* travel through waygates--probably a bit of a plot device rewrite a Jordan's part, if you ask me. On the other hand--it's a magic system. How can you argue it? Jordan says shadowspawn can't Travel. My best guess is that he'd also say that air indeed does not cross through a gateway. *shrug* Interesting thought, though.[/quote']

 

I thought it was interesting, too. That's why I thought so hard about it :)

J

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It does work that way' date=' there's several times it happens (say when Egwene's group travels to Tar Valon). It could happen, though it'd be like draining an ocean through a straw--in our world there's something like 10^26 TONS of air in our atmosphere. Channelers can do a lot of nasty things, how much of the power do you think it would take to make a lethal embolism...or cut the nerves in your spinal cord?

 

It think the ending of Gaiman's Neverwhere is an example of what this would be like.[/quote']

 

Aye, the problem is that I don't remember a description of a breeze through the gateway--meaning I don't remember, not that it didn't happen. ;) That's a good catch if that's the case, though. I'm going to be looking particularly hard at that next time I see travelling used.

 

-----

 

Oh, and this is totally non-related to WoT, but I couldn't help but notice a known bug in the forum software that I may be able to help people work around.

 

You need to select "Disable HTML in this post" in order to have the quotations work properly. Just thought I'd help spread the info in case you didn't know. :)

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Gateway mechanics is a tricky subject. The physics of it is not discussed very often. I for one do not ever remember a mention of wind coming through a gateway. I imagine that a gateway in WOT is similar to the wormholes in the TV shows "Stargate". They surmise that only that which tries to cross the event horizon with intent can pass. So say the wind picks up a leaf and blows it toward it, it wont pass, but if you throw a stone it will. I think this all came about when they opened into a black hole, and were not sucked into it or something. Anyway, vehichles of natural phenomenom would not cross the threshold, but an arrow, person, whatever would. Some or all of this might be inplace within a gateway.

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I wonder where this "barrier" comes from? is it just a residue from the fold on the pattern. If so what about True Power gateways? they TEAR a hole on the pattern so do they act the same ? And Mydraal, how do they move about ? Even Aginor didn't know and he created them albeit as unforseen throwbacks from trollocs.

Would a gateway into space not turn into like a black hole ?

 

I may be wrong but awell :)

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I thiught snow came through the gateway when Radn chased Avi but Asmo did made illusioned the gate or somehting. Prolly completely wrong but if snow can come through so can wind I would suppose.

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really, i think that this would be up to rj. speaking in terms of our laws of physics, excluding the fact that you can make a gateway, it should be possible, yet i think rj just never thought about it. i mean however important gateways are to the books, im sure rj never made up "the 3 laws of gateways" so i guess what im saying is that it could go either way...maybe wind and rain cant get through a gateway, but i think rj just never considered it. plus, nobody knows that space is a vacuum in WOT, so this could only ever happen by a really misplaced gateway.

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Gateway mechanics is a tricky subject. The physics of it is not discussed very often. I for one do not ever remember a mention of wind coming through a gateway. I imagine that a gateway in WOT is similar to the wormholes in the TV shows "Stargate". They surmise that only that which tries to cross the event horizon with intent can pass. So say the wind picks up a leaf and blows it toward it' date=' it wont pass, but if you throw a stone it will. I think this all came about when they opened into a black hole, and were not sucked into it or something. Anyway, vehichles of natural phenomenom would not cross the threshold, but an arrow, person, whatever would. Some or all of this might be inplace within a gateway.[/quote']

 

Actually Stargate explained it a bit more indepth..

Basically the StarGate is a very large/mechanical/computurized worm hole generating device. And to prevent sudden catostrophic events from happening they built in a safety device, or is the nature of a worm hole. Quite simply the Event Horizon of the WormHole is that of the airpressure/gravity ect of the planet/place they are at. And that only an object that excedes that pressure/force is able to go through the stargate.

This is why if a leaf were blowing on the wind it would not pass through...

There was infact one epidsode of StarGate where they were underwater and were unable to go home because the pressure of all that water on that gate meant they had to escede that force to get through.. And when your several mile sunder a planet that is an ocean... Well getting back through will be difficult...

 

Now RJ's gateways might or mght not work like that.

It might be a 'built in safety device' within the weaves mechanics. Or it could be the nature of a worm hole taking on the characteristics of its enviroment around it making sure things around it can't go through unless it excedes the forces of the atmosphere it is in.. Afterall venting all the worlds atmosphere through a tiny hole would most asuredly hurt the wheel...

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Good points, it's even worse though. Even a gateway to say the top of a 5 story building would be like the end of Aliens--even for that small pressure differential (like a 0.01 % difference). Going from sea level to somewhere like Denver would be a difference in air pressure of 20% (about 3psi less at one mile altitude). It would take you about 5000lbs of force to push your way back...I don't want to think about how fast you'd be going through the other way :shock:

 

We know it takes a lot of OP strength to Travel, seems like a good explanation as to why ;)

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First of all Cybertrolloc was right. Wind and so forth does pass through the gateway. The example of when Egwene travelled to Tar Valon being the most obvious, but there are other instances... like when Egwene made a gateway to the waste and heat got through... or the fact that light does. If electromagnetic radiation can go through, so can air and wind.

 

This suggests that if a gateway were made into space then a suction would be experienced. The effects may not be as massive as suspected though... the sunction might be felt as much as three or four meters beyond the gateway, but not much further... this is due to the large medium our atmosphere is. Wide-scale decompression would require a much larger gateway. Also it may be that the Age of Legenders merely never thought of it... after all, wouldn't it also be theoretically possible to split an atom with the power, but they never thought of that.

 

As for Jedi's point about pressure through normal gateways... i suspect he should be right about that... though it would be an easy thing for RJ to miss thinking off.

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I agree with Cybertrolloc too taking for example Aviendha, she is about the same strength as elayne/egwene in the OP and she can't make a huge gate i believe it was 4 paces by 4 paces ? i may be wrong as i can't remember exactly but maybe what Cybertrolloc mentioned has something to do with that.

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Good points' date=' it's even worse though. Even a gateway to say the top of a 5 story building would be like the end of Aliens--even for that small pressure differential (like a 0.01 % difference). Going from sea level to somewhere like Denver would be a difference in air pressure of 20% (about 3psi less at one mile altitude). It would take you about 5000lbs of force to push your way back...I don't want to think about how fast you'd be going through the other way :shock:

 

We know it takes a lot of OP strength to Travel, seems like a good explanation as to why ;)[/quote']

 

Umm the thing about denver and sea level. If your going by the stargate thing, it wouldn't matter whats on the other side, you only need enough inertia to by-pass your side to get through on the other.

 

Now if your talking about atmosphere going through it then of course you'd have problems... Infact.. you might just get blown back 40 feet. :P

 

Luckers:

Is there only evidence for the females on this? Are there any cases of wind going through a male gateway?

The process of a female gateway is making 2 points identical.

A males is ripping a hole in the fabric of space..

So the real question here would be.. Are the female gateways so identical that it allows the atmosphere to pass through it? And does the males have the built in event horizon to keep the atmosphere out? Or do they both act the same, just the process of making them is different?

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It's magic, I wouldn't worry about it or at least worry about the plot holes first. You could ask Jordan if it's really pressing on your mind ;) You can use my numbers if you want to, they're just back of the envelope, but the example for sea level to one mile elevation would be in the 1000s of pounds of force for a typically sized adult (I used 12 square feet of effective surface area).

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No male Traveling is folding the pattern like when Rand explains it he makes two tents and brings them together so he Folds the Pattern.

 

It's True Power that rips the fabric that's why the "world screams" when Moridin uses the TP to Travel after observing Sammael and Graendal

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A males is ripping a hole in the fabric of space..

 

Males punch a hole rather than tearing it (although that might be much the same thing... but it seems more concise and less destructive that what is done with the dark ones so called 'true power').

 

So the real question here would be.. Are the female gateways so identical that it allows the atmosphere to pass through it? And does the males have the built in event horizon to keep the atmosphere out? Or do they both act the same, just the process of making them is different?

 

I actually think that gateways are identical for both males and female, although the process of making them is different. Or rather I think the way they think when they make the weave is different but I think the results are the same.

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Is there only evidence for the females on this? Are there any cases of wind going through a male gateway?

 

I believe when Rand travels at the end of PoD rain and sleet comes through. Moreover though the fact that light gets through either proves there is no form of barrier. Electromagnetic waves are a form far weaker then wind... if they make it through, anything can.

 

I agree with Cybertrolloc too taking for example Aviendha, she is about the same strength as elayne/egwene in the OP and she can't make a huge gate i believe it was 4 paces by 4 paces ? i may be wrong as i can't remember exactly but maybe what Cybertrolloc mentioned has something to do with that.

 

Aviendha's issues are psychological, not relating to her strength or skill with the One Power. She used gateways to flee Rand in high distress, and when she was later taught how to make them, it didn't work as well. This, if the Cadsuane's and Sorilea's discussions are to be trusted, is fairly common with learning weaves a second way or second time. Aviendha has effectively blocked herself.

 

I actually think that gateways are identical for both males and female, although the process of making them is different. Or rather I think the way they think when they make the weave is different but I think the results are the same.

 

I agree... gateways seem to be not things of the power, but results of them... like lightning.

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