is (more or less) harmless to living beings; it can be handled, carried around, or stored in everyday containers without any long-term side effects for those transporting it. Other forms of Phlebotinum are hazardous stuff
in their own right, where prolonged exposure, physical contact
, or even sniffing the fumes can have harmful, permanent, and/or fatal consequences.
In order to manage or transport the latter kind, you need Phlebotinum-Handling Equipment
. This be anything from simple gloves
(or a Hazmat Suit
) to avoid physical contact, specially marked containers to keep the material secure and prevent it from irradiating the surrounding areas, or specialized machinery used to handle the material remotely (especially if it there is a lot of it). Sometimes Phlebotinum-Handling Equipment
may itself run on a different kind of Phlebotinum, or provide effects that counter or neutralize the hazards presented by the Phlebotinum being handled. The specialized equipment may also be used to alter the material's States Of Phlebotinum
See also Phlebotinum Handling Requirements
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- The Andromeda Strain (1971): waldoes were used inside the sealed biohazard room while processing the title disease.
- The "live forever" potion in Death Becomes Her is in a crystal vial that stands up on its end even though it comes to a point.
- Moonraker: the scientists in Hugo Drax's lab use manipulators for part of their processing of the deadly poison (as seen here, starting at 1:15). Unfortunately they use manual manipulation outside a sealed area for the rest, so after James Bond fools around with the vials one of them is knocked down and broken, killing them (2:15-3:50).
- Resident Evil: when the T-Virus containers in the sealed area are being placed in the suitcase to be stolen, they're manipulated with waldoes.
- Star Trek (2009): The Red Matter had to be held in a floor to ceiling plastic (glass?) containment unit and pulled out by a syringe one drop at a time.
- Labyrinths of Echo has a lot of these, such as protected spellcasting chambers enchanted to contain even the most destructive effects.
- The prize goes to Death Gloves, one of most dangerous magical weapons around. These are mostly used by emitting a ranged attack, but a touch also turns anyone into spoonful of very fine ashes, and cannot be deactivated, short of placing into an Anti-Magic area. One prequel mentions that the inventor died before completion of this artifact, and the mage who picked up his notes and half-finished glove soon "vanished". The modern safety protocol requires a would-be wearer or maker to paint a protective rune on each nail with non-dissolvable ink, and one more on the roof of mouth with a poisonous ink — not enough to kill, but enough to leave permanent change in the body. And even with protected hands, it's "scratch your nose and die" deal. Thus, while armed, but not in battle, to mechanically prevent a glove's contact with anything not scheduled to instant and very thorough destruction, the user wears another glove on top, covered with a different set of runes for protection of non-living material.
- Played with in Duty Calls, where Ciaphas just stows a mutation-causing artifact in a standard carrying case, seemingly cancelling its effects. However, his aide Jurgen is a blank, and is the one actually preventing the device from working. Once the rogue inquisitor holding them hostage gets out of Jurgen's range...
- Probably true of the sanctified cloths used to wrap Blackened Denarii, whenever they're captured by Knights of the Cross in The Dresden Files.
Live Action TV
- The purple goo in Warehouse 13 used by Pete and Myka to neutralize artifacts, functionally similar foil bags, and to a lesser extent their purple latex gloves.
- They used ordinary gloveboxes (see Real Life) in Stargate SG-1 when studying alien pathogens and the like. This failed when they were studying a virus-like nanotechnology, which started eating through the gloves.
- Remote Manipulators (AKA "waldoes") are often used for this purpose.
- Antimatter must be kept in a magnetic trap. For now this is just because the antimatter will be lost if it touches anything else but one day a mass large enough to be dangerous might be contained the same way.
- BIONICLE: as Energized Protodermis either transforms or destroys whatever it touches, there are special containers that able to hold it, such as a vial the Toa Metru sought in Maze of Shadows, another vial in Time Trap, and Zamor Spheres.
- Exsidian from Bara Magna is used as an ingredient in making Energized Protodermis resistant materials.
- In The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, there is the Wraithguard gauntlet that is needed to handle Keening and Sunder (magical knife and hammer, deadly when handled with bare hands) safely.
- Half-Life 2's gravity gun was originally used for handling dangerous stuff required for Dr. Vance's research.
- Inverted in The Mercury Men: The Mercury Engineers wear special suits not because the Gravity Engine is dangerous to handle, but because they are made of light and can't handle it without wearing the suit.
- The standard SCP Foundation artifact entry lists what the thing looks like, the many, many safety precautions and equipment needed to handle it, and how it was found.
- Wonderflonium may or may not be this. We see it in a case with a warning, but the warning merely cautions the reader not to bounce the Wonderflonium.
- Inverted in Not Always Right. Save It On A Flesh Drive mentions inability to use a capacitive touch screen while wearing gloves.