What-If 0003: "Yoda"

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Kaiman
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Kaiman » Wed Jul 18, 2012 5:22 am UTC

The most underrated part of this analysis is that it correctly estimated Yoda and Palpatine as having similar power levels.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby carolineee » Wed Jul 18, 2012 6:25 am UTC

Qaanol wrote:
carolineee wrote:kW/h

These are not the units of power you are looking for.

I guess you're thinking about kWh, which is of course the unit of energy we should be looking for in the end.
However, if I say that Yoda has a power of 18kW per hour, then that's kW/h, isn't it? Strange unit though.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby putdeksel » Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:04 am UTC

carolineee wrote:I guess you're thinking about kWh, which is of course the unit of energy we should be looking for in the end.
However, if I say that Yoda has a power of 18kW per hour, then that's kW/h, isn't it? Strange unit though.


the Watt represents one Joule per second, or J/s. so a power of 18 kW 'per hour' would be meaningless, as 18 kW already means 18 kJ per second.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby grimer30 » Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:27 am UTC

You wouldn't have to use Yoda himself, i'm sure you could rig up some kind of machine that uses midichlo-
:D

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby nigenet » Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:47 am UTC

In A New Hope, Obi Wan tells Darth "If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you could possibly imagine"

So presumably a dead jedi can provide much more power than a live one?
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby twcarlson » Wed Jul 18, 2012 1:01 pm UTC

icalvo wrote:Also I have seen a big mistake in your calculation:

5300 * 0.9 * 1.4 / 3.6 = 1855 W = 1.85 kW (NOT 18.5)


You forgot to include "g", which is 9.81 m/s^2.

So 5300 * 0.9 * 9.81 * 1.4 / 3.6 = 18197 W = 18.2 kW. Although he uses 18.3 for some reason.

It's confusing because the "g" in "0.9g" is not a compatible unit in this multiplication; it has to be expanded to read 0.9 * (9.81 m/s^2).

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Fieari » Wed Jul 18, 2012 1:29 pm UTC

I thought the point of science is that you can discard what people SAY and look at only what they can DEMONSTRATE.

SAYING that the Force can do all kinds of stuff is meaningless unless it is demonstrated. If the force actually was not limited by size, why not use it to simply force push the death star out of the way, or directly into a sun? Or just point the firing dish in the opposite direction? I venture that the answer is: because they can't, and Jedi tend to overestimate their powers, especially in advertising and slogans.

As such, I support Randall's venture here, although the mistake in lbs vs kg is pretty significant.
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby blowfishhootie » Wed Jul 18, 2012 1:36 pm UTC

Fieari wrote:I thought the point of science is that you can discard what people SAY and look at only what they can DEMONSTRATE.

SAYING that the Force can do all kinds of stuff is meaningless unless it is demonstrated. If the force actually was not limited by size, why not use it to simply force push the death star out of the way, or directly into a sun? Or just point the firing dish in the opposite direction? I venture that the answer is: because they can't, and Jedi tend to overestimate their powers, especially in advertising and slogans.

As such, I support Randall's venture here, although the mistake in lbs vs kg is pretty significant.


I agree, this annoyed me big time about the Star Wars movies. Ultimately, the force doesn't really do shit. Vader, referring to the Death Star, says at one point something along the lines of, "the ability to destroy a planet is insignificant next to the power of the force." So why the hell didn't Yoda or whoever else just use the force to destroy the damn thing? And with Vader and Palpatine on their side, why did the Empire build the damn thing in the first place? What did they ever do in these movies to demonstrate this supposed power? Talk to each other telepathically? Pick up a relatively small plane? Great. Hardly the universe-changing power it is made out to be, though.

In my opinion, this hypothetical would be better posed with Magneto picking up the Golden Gate Bridge with all the people on it in whichever X-Men movie that was. Seems like that required more power than anything I remember Yoda doing.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby philsov » Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:23 pm UTC

So why the hell didn't Yoda or whoever else just use the force to destroy the damn thing?


b-b-b-but Luke did use the force and disabled his targetting machine to drop the photon torpedo down the shaft to blow up the death star.

Still, I agree with the sentiment. Luke also made C3P0 and his throne levitate for the ewoks. It certainly trumps Anakin's fruit-grabbing.
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby blowfishhootie » Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:28 pm UTC

philsov wrote:
So why the hell didn't Yoda or whoever else just use the force to destroy the damn thing?


b-b-b-but Luke did use the force and disabled his targetting machine to drop the photon torpedo down the shaft to blow up the death star.

Still, I agree with the sentiment. Luke also made C3P0 and his throne levitate for the ewoks. It certainly trumps Anakin's fruit-grabbing.


Yeah, but Luke could very well have destroyed the death star without doing that. Yeah Vader (I think) was on his tail, so it would have been close, but regardless, it was actually the power of the torpedo that destroyed the thing. The effect of the force in that instance would have been matched by a slightly higher-powered targeting device.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Radical_Initiator » Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:30 pm UTC

blowfishhootie wrote:In my opinion, this hypothetical would be better posed with Magneto picking up the Golden Gate Bridge with all the people on it in whichever X-Men movie that was. Seems like that required more power than anything I remember Yoda doing.


I like this. If Magneto can pick up the Golden Gate bridge, with numerous people and vehicles on it, imagine how many turbines he could spin simultaneously.
I looked out across the river today …

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Akamai » Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:50 pm UTC

I've tried harnessing the power of Yoda, and I don't recommend it. Remember a few years ago, when a few people attempted to fuel their diesel cars with spent oil from fast food restaurants? They'd drive along, leaving the smell of french fries and fried fish in their wakes. It's even worse putting a Jedi in your tank. Yoda smells like rancid Dagobah swamp water filtered through the carcass of a lightsabered tautaun, and that's when you're trying to wrestle the little green bastard into the tank. Once you get going, it then smells like burning wookie hair that's been soaked in rancid Dagobah swamp water filtered through the carcass of a lightsabered tautaun.

I think I'll stick with my current alternative fuel. Dilithium crystals are difficult to find, but the smell much better.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Adam H » Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:55 pm UTC

blowfishhootie wrote:I agree, this annoyed me big time about the Star Wars movies. Ultimately, the force doesn't really do shit. Vader, referring to the Death Star, says at one point something along the lines of, "the ability to destroy a planet is insignificant next to the power of the force." So why the hell didn't Yoda or whoever else just use the force to destroy the damn thing? And with Vader and Palpatine on their side, why did the Empire build the damn thing in the first place? What did they ever do in these movies to demonstrate this supposed power? Talk to each other telepathically? Pick up a relatively small plane? Great. Hardly the universe-changing power it is made out to be, though.

It's kind of interesting actually. We know that the force is less powerful than the death star (in practical terms), so Vader was either lying or mistaken, or a bit of both. But this makes sense from a psychological point of view. Killing one person mysteriously seems about as powerful as killing billions by pushing a button, at least emotionally. We know it's irrational, but when Vader chokes someone we all think "dayum!" and when the death star blows up a planet we think "yeah that looks realistic..." And it's a real psychological effect - we're impacted most by individual deaths/events than multiple distant (emotionally or physically) deaths/events. (Which is why Superman would get more posthumous praise from saving lives and stopping lex than being a transitional power source.)

So my point is, the Jedi could be some of the few who understand this effect and use it as scare tactics when required, OR they could be falling prey to the effect themselves. Either way, I don't think it ruins the story. :)
-Adam

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby PolakoVoador » Wed Jul 18, 2012 4:14 pm UTC

Max™ wrote:I just realized Randall is making these to see what the most ridiculous thing he can get us to discuss is!


I think you just nailed it. And I love to read this discussions :mrgreen:

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Geekoid » Wed Jul 18, 2012 4:16 pm UTC

"But with world electricity consumption pushing 2 terawatts,"
You should clarify 2TWh.

When looking at electrical consumption, most global data reports it on TWh per yr (over 20,000 TWh/yr if anyone is interested).


Luke also lifted the x-wing, just not very far.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Loco-motive » Wed Jul 18, 2012 6:41 pm UTC

I was very interested in this analysis until I got to the conclusion and read that Yoda was about equal to a Smart Car. Come on! Yoda had to be more powerful than a Smart Car! Seriously, Darth Vader would laugh at me if I attacked him with a Smart Car. Wouldn’t you? (Engineers call this a sanity check.)
After a wasted morning, I finished a revised estimate that places Yoda's minimum power output somewhere in the 2.5 megawatt range. This uses Ryan's approach but corrects the error in the craft weight estimate, accounts for entrained water, marine growth and the effects of the Inverse Square Law. The detailed back-up is probably too much for a board posting (2 pages), but I have submitted it directly to What-if.xkcd.
In the mean time, rest assured. Yoda is significantly more powerful than a Smart Car. However, I don't think he would like to be hooked up to the grid to prove the point. We should also take care when making these sorts of specualtions and remember Darth Vader's warning: "Don't underestimate the Force."

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Copper Bezel » Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:38 pm UTC

Um. No. Read the thread or check your terminology before posting, one of the two. The 2 TW is use at any time. A TWh is an hour's worth of current at 1 TW. TWh per year is just TW, times 87600, which is how many hours there are in a year....
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby drewder » Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:00 pm UTC

brakos82 wrote:Now the real question.... what if a baseball pitcher pitched Yoda at .9c?

If you could convince Yoda to start lobbing baseballs at .9c it wouldn't take very long for all your power requirements to be fulfilled.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Max™ » Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:28 pm UTC

Copper Bezel wrote:Um. No. Read the thread or check your terminology before posting, one of the two. The 2 TW is use at any time. A TWh is an hour's worth of current at 1 TW. TWh per year is just TW, times 87600, which is how many hours there are in a year....

Thank you, that bugged me too.

Also, 20,000 TW is 20 petawatts.
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Oktalist » Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:17 pm UTC

dzamie wrote:The threads seem to follow the basic structure of "Randall posted an explanation, let's prove him wrong,"

The peer review process at work.
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Pfhorrest » Wed Jul 18, 2012 11:48 pm UTC

drewder wrote:
brakos82 wrote:Now the real question.... what if a baseball pitcher pitched Yoda at .9c?

If you could convince Yoda to start lobbing baseballs at .9c it wouldn't take very long for all your power requirements to be fulfilled.

So if a baseball pitcher pitched Yoda at 0.9c and then relativistic Yoda Force-lobbed a baseball as hard as he could, what are the odds of getting the speed of the ball right by randomly guessing on the SATs?
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Kain » Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:55 am UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:
drewder wrote:
brakos82 wrote:Now the real question.... what if a baseball pitcher pitched Yoda at .9c?

If you could convince Yoda to start lobbing baseballs at .9c it wouldn't take very long for all your power requirements to be fulfilled.

So if a baseball pitcher pitched Yoda at 0.9c and then relativistic Yoda Force-lobbed a baseball as hard as he could, what are the odds of getting the speed of the ball right by randomly guessing on the SATs?

Clearly the odds are indeterminate, because Quantum! :D
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby drewder » Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:05 am UTC

I wonder though is the force a form of free energy? If the cost of the energy is zero wouldn't that mean creating an infinite amount would be possible? At which point Jedi master could actually be able to accelerate something to the speed of light.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Pfhorrest » Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:26 am UTC

drewder wrote:I wonder though is the force a form of free energy? If the cost of the energy is zero wouldn't that mean creating an infinite amount would be possible? At which point Jedi master could actually be able to accelerate something to the speed of light.

I wasn't suggesting earlier that the Force is a source of free energy, but rather that the Force is a pervasive source of energy (it is described as an "energy field") and that doing something with the Force is not dependent on the ability of the Jedi to output a certain amount of energy, but more their ability to influence the energy already present all around them.

Of course an implication of this might be that the Force present in a given area could be temporarily depleted. Just like I can output a lot more energy by opening a floodgate than I can from my own body, I have to wait for the reservoir to refill before I can do that again. Apparently the Force is replenished by living things (it's an energy field "created by all living things").

So it's sort of like being immersed in fuel, but only some are capable of burning that fuel, and with varying degrees of throughput. This also makes sense in terms of Yoda's imperative to "let the Force flow through you". Using the Force effectively is less about generating a ton of power inside yourself and shoving it out, as it is about opening yourself and letting the power around you flow unimpeded through you. The more Force-sensitive you are, the wider open your throttle is; closed minds choke off the flow. (As for the Dark Side, I can see interpreting being morally uninhibited as a form of "openness", and Palpatine does say something like "let the hate flow through you" at some point).
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Max™ » Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:32 am UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:
drewder wrote:I wonder though is the force a form of free energy? If the cost of the energy is zero wouldn't that mean creating an infinite amount would be possible? At which point Jedi master could actually be able to accelerate something to the speed of light.

I wasn't suggesting earlier that the Force is a source of free energy, but rather that the Force is a pervasive source of energy (it is described as an "energy field") and that doing something with the Force is not dependent on the ability of the Jedi to output a certain amount of energy, but more their ability to influence the energy already present all around them.

Of course an implication of this might be that the Force present in a given area could be temporarily depleted. Just like I can output a lot more energy by opening a floodgate than I can from my own body, I have to wait for the reservoir to refill before I can do that again. Apparently the Force is replenished by living things (it's an energy field "created by all living things").

So it's sort of like being immersed in fuel, but only some are capable of burning that fuel, and with varying degrees of throughput. This also makes sense in terms of Yoda's imperative to "let the Force flow through you". Using the Force effectively is less about generating a ton of power inside yourself and shoving it out, as it is about opening yourself and letting the power around you flow unimpeded through you. The more Force-sensitive you are, the wider open your throttle is; closed minds choke off the flow. (As for the Dark Side, I can see interpreting being morally uninhibited as a form of "openness", and Palpatine does say something like "let the hate flow through you" at some point).

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby RAGBRAIvet » Thu Jul 19, 2012 9:51 am UTC

Yoda does not provide power himself.  He is merely channeling and directing the energy contained within the Force in much the same manner that a millrace diverts and directs water to a water wheel, or a penstock directs water flow through a turbine.  

Another thing to keep in mind —
if Yoda were to be creating Force power himself, we then need to take into account the energy input to the system....which brings us back to what Yoda eats, and how much?

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Max™ » Thu Jul 19, 2012 10:05 am UTC

RAGBRAIvet wrote:Yoda does not provide power himself.  He is merely channeling and directing the energy contained within the Force in much the same manner that a millrace diverts and directs water to a water wheel, or a penstock directs water flow through a turbine.  

Another thing to keep in mind —
if Yoda were to be creating Force power himself, we then need to take into account the energy input to the system....which brings us back to what Yoda eats, and how much?

I'll say it... if he gets the force from eating, what does his poop look like?
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Shidoshi » Thu Jul 19, 2012 1:45 pm UTC

Max™ wrote:
RAGBRAIvet wrote:Yoda does not provide power himself.  He is merely channeling and directing the energy contained within the Force in much the same manner that a millrace diverts and directs water to a water wheel, or a penstock directs water flow through a turbine.  

Another thing to keep in mind —
if Yoda were to be creating Force power himself, we then need to take into account the energy input to the system....which brings us back to what Yoda eats, and how much?

I'll say it... if he gets the force from eating, what does his poop look like?

Since he uses mostly the light side of the force, his poop would probably be dark.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Max™ » Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:34 pm UTC

Yeah, this discussion got strange fast.
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby J Thomas » Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:40 pm UTC

Max™ wrote:Yeah, this discussion got strange fast.


It didn't start out strange?
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Max™ » Thu Jul 19, 2012 3:46 pm UTC

J Thomas wrote:
Max™ wrote:Yeah, this discussion got strange fast.


It didn't start out strange?

Not in comparison to where it went.
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Pgood » Thu Jul 19, 2012 7:12 pm UTC

My biggest thought was that Randall ignored (possibly intentionally, for the sake of argument) the fact that the force required to lift an object out of muddy swamp water is substantially more than trying to move it through vacuum or air, as anyone who has walked through a swamp and lost a boot can tell you. Calculating the density, viscosity, and polar properties of that goop could be prohibitive, though, as it's fictional mud made with fictional alien detritus on a fictional world.

But I want my fake physics to be comprehensive, dang it!

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby notlogic » Fri Jul 20, 2012 11:57 am UTC

Force Power diminishes with distance from the Jedi at a rate of r^-2

Had the ship been 1 meter away, the calculations would be correct... and Jedi have access to infinite force if you touch them.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Kit. » Fri Jul 20, 2012 6:03 pm UTC

Adam H wrote:We know that the force is less powerful than the death star (in practical terms),

In practical terms, the force changes the powers in the galaxy. The death star doesn't.

Adam H wrote:Killing one person mysteriously seems about as powerful as killing billions by pushing a button,

Those are different persons. The whole point in destruction of Alderaan was to annoy (not even kill) Princess Leia.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Adam H » Fri Jul 20, 2012 7:05 pm UTC

Kit. wrote:
Adam H wrote:We know that the force is less powerful than the death star (in practical terms),

In practical terms, the force changes the powers in the galaxy. The death star doesn't.
No, those are really really abstract terms. "Changes the powers of the galaxy"? What does that mean exactly?
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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Kit. » Fri Jul 20, 2012 7:27 pm UTC

Adam H wrote:
Kit. wrote:
Adam H wrote:We know that the force is less powerful than the death star (in practical terms),

In practical terms, the force changes the powers in the galaxy. The death star doesn't.
No, those are really really abstract terms. "Changes the powers of the galaxy"? What does that mean exactly?

The stuff that happens between the Jedi. Ordinary weapons, like the death star, are for killing ordinary people. For some reason they seem to not work well against jedi.

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Adam H » Fri Jul 20, 2012 8:47 pm UTC

Kit. wrote:
Adam H wrote:
Kit. wrote:
Adam H wrote:We know that the force is less powerful than the death star (in practical terms),

In practical terms, the force changes the powers in the galaxy. The death star doesn't.
No, those are really really abstract terms. "Changes the powers of the galaxy"? What does that mean exactly?

The stuff that happens between the Jedi. Ordinary weapons, like the death star, are for killing ordinary people. For some reason they seem to not work well against jedi.

"For some reason"? It's selection bias, duh. :)
-Adam

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby PolakoVoador » Fri Jul 20, 2012 9:28 pm UTC

Adam H wrote:
Kit. wrote:
Adam H wrote:
Kit. wrote:
Adam H wrote:We know that the force is less powerful than the death star (in practical terms),

In practical terms, the force changes the powers in the galaxy. The death star doesn't.
No, those are really really abstract terms. "Changes the powers of the galaxy"? What does that mean exactly?

The stuff that happens between the Jedi. Ordinary weapons, like the death star, are for killing ordinary people. For some reason they seem to not work well against jedi.

"For some reason"? It's selection bias, duh. :)


Actually, it's the Plot Armor that protects most of the Jedis :D

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby Sir_Read-a-Lot » Sat Jul 21, 2012 3:07 am UTC

If "size matters not", does that mean that the Force is actually an acceleration? :D

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Re: What-If 0003: Yoda

Postby meticoeus » Sat Jul 21, 2012 5:41 am UTC

Given he can lift large objects into the air with the Force, wouldn't it stand to reason that the best use of Yoda-power is lifting payloads into orbit? Currently it costs several million USD to launch even a fairly small payload into LEO (e.g. http://www.spacex.com/falcon9.php). It would cost Yoda only the food to feed him during the lift process. Assuming the low estimate of his peak power used we solve for time to LEO (2000 km):

P_Yoda = m_xwing * a_degobah * d_xwing / t_xwing => t_leo = m_payload * a_earth * d_leo / P_Yoda

P_Yoda = 11465.7 * 0.9 * 9.81 * 1.4 / 3.6 = 39.4 kW

t_leo = 11465.7 * 9.81 * 2000000 / 39.4 = 5.71 million seconds

which yields about 66.1 days for a payload the mass of the x-wing (whatever its mass happens to be since if you look closely, it cancels in this estimate).

Assuming a cost of $54,000,000 to launch this payload traditionally, that gives us a value of

$54000000 / 1587hrs = $34,020/hr

That's a far cry from $2/hr and it gets higher if Yoda is actually more powerful.

(note: if your numbers do not match mine exactly, I only rounded the numbers displayed, not the numbers to calculate each next step)


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