Main Unobtainium Discussion

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04:20:21 PM May 22nd 2016
"[...] the Trope Namer is the mineral sought by the mining company in Avatar."

...Actually, if Wikipédia is to be trusted (and it does provides references, so I suppose it can be), the term may date back to as far as the1950s. Should this be corrected ?
02:38:42 AM Jun 3rd 2010
Are positrons classifie as Unobtanium? (They're antimatter, of course, so they're sort of covered already.)

The Asimov Robot books refer to them all the time, but I don't remember one where the story hung on a problem with them. So I guess they're not a Plot Device but (to use my favourite WS Gilbert quote) 'coroborative detail intended to add artistic verisimilitude to an otherwise bald and unconvincing narrative'.

[Prepares for flames from Asimov fans. Actually I like a lot of (early) asimov but I'm ambivalent about the robots.]
07:30:51 AM Aug 31st 2010
edited by joeyjojo
If any thing they are technobabble. it's not the positrons that are important it's the fact it's an artificial brain. the positrons are not a substance in the story just buzz word Prefix. I can say this as fan: If he was writing the books today he would be calling them higginstronic neuralnets or Quantum cyberbranes
05:54:32 PM Apr 13th 2010
edited by Herbarius
About antimatter: "a microscopic amount = tactical nuclear weapon yield"

I would strongly debate that. I once heard, all particle accelerators on Earth combined couldn't even produce enough antimatter to ignite a match with its matter/antimatter reaction.

So, ...

the amount of antimatter all particle accelerators on Earth combined could produce = a microscopic amount

not able to ignite a match <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< tactical nuke
11:20:59 PM Apr 13th 2010
You can have a microscopic amount of antimatter, which is still vastly more than has ever been produced on earth, and hence has a tactical nuclear yield.
02:04:14 PM May 5th 2010
Isn't this a bit wrong? I suppose unobtainium should be some exotic meterial like "red mercury" 106th element instead of stuff that is expensive but available.
02:28:17 AM Jan 8th 2012
Red mercury was fictional, references were created by the US/UK as a red herring to throw off other nations' development of fission, primarily the USSR.
11:45:54 AM Sep 4th 2017
edited by GeekProphet
A single kilogram of antimatter and the kilogram of matter it is mixed with together produce about 43 megatons of explosive force. The amount mentioned in the note is, 1 x 10 ^9 grams, or 1 x 10 ^ 12 less than this, or about equal to 1/5th of a stick of dynamite, nowhere near the power of even the very smallest of tactical nukes.
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