Pagerunner

theory
The Chemistry of God Metals

110 posts in this topic

Copy-Paste of my post in the event's topic, because here is actually where it belong:

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My first thoughts to the "leftover after a Ettmetal's explosion" is Atium OR Lerasium OR an alloy of (Atium/Lerasium) and Alluminium (the last one for a Theory of mine about the Spiritual Emptyness) OR Alluminium alone but:
The Lerasium can't be the outcome, the Southern will have a plenty of mistborn in this case, and with the probably unbalance in Ruin/Preservation investiture is unlikely

The Atium is actually the main candidate from my list, It's quite useless in the Era 2 so its revelation doesn't change the society too much, much more for the unbalance it's more likely that Ruin's Influence remain in the metal.

Atium/lerasium alloy: If one of the Spiritual associations to a Shard is removed. You will stay with the other godmetal+whatever remain of the drained part (I think Alluminium but ok)

Alluminium: Again this is for my Theory of the Spiritual Emptiness, but it's unlikely. If the Ettmetal lose only one of its Spiritual Associations, the result can't be a pure neutral metal

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So the most likely outcome will be Atium+Alluminium alloy

Edited by Yata
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Well, if harmonium + water pulls energy from the Spiritual Realm, that must open a tunnel through the Cognitive Realm, creating a temporary perpendicularity.  This could be very important in space exploration, as well as reaching planets such as Threnody that have no natural perpendicularities.

 

Also, I'm unclear how removing the spiritual aspect of one set of particles leads to the creation of atium.  Is this explosion powerful enough to rip apart the nucleus?  That seems to directly contradict the WoB saying it is not a nuclear explosion.  Instead, wouldn't you be left with cesium with a Ruin component?

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18 minutes ago, Brgst13 said:

Well, if harmonium + water pulls energy from the Spiritual Realm, that must open a tunnel through the Cognitive Realm, creating a temporary perpendicularity.  This could be very important in space exploration, as well as reaching planets such as Threnody that have no natural perpendicularities.

 

Also, I'm unclear how removing the spiritual aspect of one set of particles leads to the creation of atium.  Is this explosion powerful enough to rip apart the nucleus?  That seems to directly contradict the WoB saying it is not a nuclear explosion.  Instead, wouldn't you be left with cesium with a Ruin component?

Yeah, I just addressed this in another thread. I'm hammering out some specifics, and I was gonna make a big Update Post once I've gotten a look at the transcripts. But, first pass idea, I think it's an excellent point. If there's no nuclear reaction, then that pretty severely limits our possibilities on what could be left behind that's interesting. I think it's the hydrogen gas that gains a Ruin aspect.

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Here's why I'm in favor of Ruin-cesium over Ruin-Hydrogen: WoB states that the particles lose their association with ONE of the god metals.  If the nucleus is intact following the reaction, and originally consisted of both Ruin and Preservation nucleons, there must be one god particle association remaining following the reaction.  Assuming that Preservation's association is the one that is destroyed, that leaves Ruin in the nucleus/electrons following harmonium + water.  While the electron could be transferred to form Ruin-hydrogen, we know that there must be Ruin-cesium based on the nuclear particles.

 

Edit: This is all based on the wording of the WoB as presented in the thread.  This is subject to change based on transcription of recordings.

Edited by Brgst13
clarification
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I wasn't a chemistry major, but I have a degree in electronics, so I've studied a good bit about metals (although I've studied more about their uses for electricity in comparison to their chemical structures). But if we're going down the path of assuming cesium was the element Brandon modeled Ettmetal after, then I can think of a few possible ways this might affect Scadrial in future eras.

1. Cesium can be used to convert various from of energy (such as heat and light) into electricity. Converting light into electricity is used with various fiber optic devices. While other elements can also be used for optics (in safer ways), this is one function cesium is capable of. 

2. Cesium used to be tested as a type of fuel for spacecrafts. Could be a possible use for the metal as Scadrial develops into a space exploration society.

3. With the explosive natural of cesium, all I really know is that there's a super-oxide created when cesium burns in the air. Super-oxides are typically used to create the sources of oxygen used for astronauts, although I think other elements such as potassium and its super-oxide are more regularly used for the oxygen generators. When cesium reacts with water, you would get a different output since the element would be combining with H2O, and I'm not entirely sure what that ends up creating (besides an explosion lol).

I'll take a wild guess and say we might end up seeing Ettmetal play into Scadrial as a fuel for space travel based on the chemical nature it's based off of. I'm just not that confident in being able to guess how everything with Ettmetal will play into the magic systems of Scadrial.

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18 hours ago, Ironeyes said:

A portion of the energy that comprises the explosion when harmonium touches water is energy being pulled directly from the spiritual realm and the particles thus losing their spiritual association with one of the shards

Ironeyes can you clarify the bold part? Was Brandon saying that the particles lose their association with ONLY ONE of the Shards (i.e. they still have it with the other)? Or was the use of "one" here just your own wording? (i.e. the particles aren't associated with any Shard after the reaction, Ruin-particles lose their Ruin association and Preservation-particles lose their Preservation association)

At first glance, my understanding here is that ALL spiritual identity is lost when harmonium reacts. I don't think we're left with Ruin-flavored products. That feels awkward to me. Why would just ONE Shard's identity go away? (presumably Preservations) That leaves you with a LOT of extra Ruin in the world, compared to just the 1 extra Ruin electron. And what would it mean for Ruin-hydrogen or Ruin-hydroxide to be floating around in the world? What are the implications of that? Just doesn't feel right to me.

I think we're left with "normal" products. Vanilla hydrogen and vanilla cesium(?) hydroxide. The identity associated with BOTH Shards is removed, and this is the extra energy Brandon is talking about. What happens to the "extra Ruin"? Sazed just makes more harmonium (not unlike atium).

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4 minutes ago, jofwu said:

Ironeyes can you clarify the bold part? Was Brandon saying that the particles lose their association with ONLY ONE of the Shards (i.e. they still have it with the other)? Or was the use of "one" here just your own wording? (i.e. the particles aren't associated with any Shard after the reaction, Ruin-particles lose their Ruin association and Preservation-particles lose their Preservation association)

At first glance, my understanding here is that ALL spiritual identity is lost when harmonium reacts. I don't think we're left with Ruin-flavored products. That feels awkward to me. Why would just ONE Shard's identity go away? (presumably Preservations) That leaves you with a LOT of extra Ruin in the world, compared to just the 1 extra Ruin electron. And what would it mean for Ruin-hydrogen or Ruin-hydroxide to be floating around in the world? What are the implications of that? Just doesn't feel right to me.

I think we're left with "normal" products. Vanilla hydrogen and vanilla cesium(?) hydroxide. The identity associated with BOTH Shards is removed, and this is the extra energy Brandon is talking about. What happens to the "extra Ruin"? Sazed just makes more harmonium (not unlike atium).

I agree with your interpretation of "one of the Shards," because any given subatomic particle only has a tie to one of the Shards in the first place. Which is also how Ironeyes worded it a little earlier in his report.

The only problem with only having mundane elements as reaction products is that there's nothing terribly interesting about either of them. Andy92's ideas are cool, especially about the superoxides, but they couldn't be produced by this reaction, which is a very well-understood one. If there's something interesting, and important for the future of Scadrial, I think there needs to be some sort of Investiture left behind. If not in the cesium, then in some of the hydrogen. And it fits very well with my suggestion that harmonium has extra Ruin, in the form of the lone valence electron; every single reaction would be transferring that Ruin electron, which would escape the decay that occurs in the rest of the atom.

As to what it would look like for Ruinous Hydrogen to exist... where do the mists go during the day? They're the physical embodiment of a Shard, as well, just in a different form. I suggested in my first post that this extra Ruin working its way into the environment could turn the very planet against the inhabitants. Maybe it makes the Mists more violent. Maybe it has a broader effect, not as chemically-based per se; but as this Ruinous Hydrogen makes its way across Scadrial, the soul of the planet begins to align with Ruin.

So, to put it a little more bluntly: there are only two things produced by the reaction of cesium with water, cesium hydroxide and hydrogen. The hydroxide isn't interesting. Either the hydrogen is interesting, or there's a physical manifestation of Investiture that doesn't manifest like a god metal does by affixing to subatomic particles. (Investitronium?)

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25 minutes ago, jofwu said:

Ironeyes can you clarify the bold part? Was Brandon saying that the particles lose their association with ONLY ONE of the Shards (i.e. they still have it with the other)? Or was the use of "one" here just your own wording? (i.e. the particles aren't associated with any Shard after the reaction, Ruin-particles lose their Ruin association and Preservation-particles lose their Preservation association)

At first glance, my understanding here is that ALL spiritual identity is lost when harmonium reacts. I don't think we're left with Ruin-flavored products. That feels awkward to me. Why would just ONE Shard's identity go away? (presumably Preservations) That leaves you with a LOT of extra Ruin in the world, compared to just the 1 extra Ruin electron. And what would it mean for Ruin-hydrogen or Ruin-hydroxide to be floating around in the world? What are the implications of that? Just doesn't feel right to me.

I think we're left with "normal" products. Vanilla hydrogen and vanilla cesium(?) hydroxide. The identity associated with BOTH Shards is removed, and this is the extra energy Brandon is talking about. What happens to the "extra Ruin"? Sazed just makes more harmonium (not unlike atium).

What Pagerunner said is correct: each subatomic particle is only associated with one shard, and loses that association in the explosion. Sorry for the awkward wording. @DAdam has the recording, so as soon as we get it transcribed we can analyze Brandon's exact words. 

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11 minutes ago, Pagerunner said:

So, to put it a little more bluntly: there are only two things produced by the reaction of cesium with water, cesium hydroxide and hydrogen. The hydroxide isn't interesting. Either the hydrogen is interesting, or there's a physical manifestation of Investiture that doesn't manifest like a god metal does by affixing to subatomic particles. (Investitronium?)

Ah, I see what you're saying. Though I'm not convinced that Brandon's "interesting" "something else" has to be invested matter. In fact, his apparent emphasis on how the "very important thing" is related to mass-energy-investiture equivalence, I absolutely don't think that must be the case.

The investiture isn't destroyed of course. At least some of it is converted to energy, from what Brandon said, and that's a big deal. Some of it could be converted to some other mass which wasn't there before (investiture becoming mass). Though I think that's unlikely. Or it could remain as investiture... and just... do something interesting now that it has been "released" from what it was doing before.

I like @Brgst13's idea that it might create a (miniature? temporary?) perpendicularity. That would definitely be something very interesting and important that got left behind. I expect on a small scale it's too small and temporary to matter. But if you blow up a lot of it at once... boom, you've got a (temporarily?) stable perpendicularity. That's huge.

And that's just one idea. There's all sorts of other things that the investiture might be doing. Or perhaps Brandon is implying the investiture-energy conversion itself is a big deal. That could have implications beyond the reaction of harmonium.

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Just now, jofwu said:

And that's just one idea. There's all sorts of other things that the investiture might be doing. Or perhaps Brandon is implying the investiture-energy conversion itself is a big deal. That could have implications beyond the reaction of harmonium.

He actually implied both, at separate times. First he said that what was left behind after the reaction was important, but then after I asked about the possibility of a nuclear reaction, he said that the type of explosion Harmonium creates has implications for the cosmere. 

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Got the verbatim! 

Ironeyes: So harmonium, we have a working theory that the reason it's so volatile is because some of the subatomic particles are associated with Ruin and some of them are [of?] Preservation. Is that true?
A: Yeah, that's basically what's going on is that it's creating a very unstable metal. Now, it is in the nature of the Cosmere not a compound but an element. But, you could call it a subatomic particle sure. It's very volatile because it is in nature spiritually in contrast with itself. And so though it is a single element rather than a compound, the spiritual nature is not happy as it is, and you can set up in the physical realm, through reactivity things that would just rip it apart and really your energy is not, your energy in that is actually pulling from the Spiritual realm, and so that's why it can be so much more explosive than even the chemistry would account for.
Ironeyes: So it's not that the subatomic particles are invested, it's that they have a spiritual identity which causes them to...
A: Yes.
Ironeyes: So then it's not creating an oxide because after the spiritual energy goes away from the explosion[unintelligible] metal, right?
A: Right, and...
Ironeyes: So you can't find harmonium oxide in the water afterwards.
A: Right right right right. Because it's not, it's, yeah.  But you might be able to find something else, which is really relevant to the cosmere. And to Scadrial.
Ironeyes: So the core elements, the core particles, having extra repulsion causes them to have a nuclear potential.
A: I would not call it nuclear because it's not the same exact thing. But there is a cosmere equivalent, to... I mean, you could do nuclear power just the same in the cosmere, but since we have a third kind of state of matter, right, matter, energy, Investiture, you have a third axis that you know, you can release energy from matter, you can release investiture from matter, and things like that. So it's similar, but following its own rules that I have a little more... that are controlled by me, right. But are built on this idea. So once you add [unintelligible for a few syllables] that matter can now exist in this third state, you get all sorts of weird things, which one of the things that happens is, you can get an energy release in sort of the same way. A reaction, I'm not going to call it a nuclear reaction, but of the same vein.

Source: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1o_-OadmbojDGZqFWls2meynCw4qLBWP-syEeSSgSRQ0/edit

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So instead of a nuclear reaction in the way of a physical release of energy, it's a reaction in a way that releases Invested energy. Whatever the metal releases when it reacts with water seems to be more significant in regards to the Spiritual realm in comparison to the Physical realm. 

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6 hours ago, Ironeyes said:

Got the verbatim! 

 

 

It was great questioning.

I'll repost what I put on the event signing page, I meant to put it here. No real useful theories just my thoughts on it.

This transcript is very interesting to me. It sounds like the reaction is basically what we think of as nuclear but with different terminology. 'Nuclear' reactions are basically matter being converted to energy and as a tiny amount of matter us equivalent to a massive amount of energy, it's a big reaction compare to chemical reactions. The other way of course it takes massive amounts of energy to 'make' matter. The ettmetal reaction is analogous to a nuclear reaction (presumably fission more than fusion).

The difference in the Cosmere is that there's a third state, investiture. With fissile material the element has an unstable nucleus. With ettmetal it is the investiture that is unstable. So my question is, if energy:matter=huge:tiny, what is the ratio of investiture:matter? I imagine even bigger but that's pure speculation. And how much investiture does it take to 'create' normal energy or matter? Have we seen any potential examples of the matter/energy/investiture conversion elsewhere?

(And correct me if I'm wrong with anything, I'm not a physicist)

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20 hours ago, jofwu said:

I like @Brgst13's idea that it might create a (miniature? temporary?) perpendicularity. That would definitely be something very interesting and important that got left behind. I expect on a small scale it's too small and temporary to matter. But if you blow up a lot of it at once... boom, you've got a (temporarily?) stable perpendicularity. That's huge.

Since the energy is coming from the Spiritual Realm, could the reaction actually create the equivalent of a Spiritual perpendicularity?  That could lead to a much different form of exploration than what the current world-hoppers do since space doesn't exist in the Spirit Realm.

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Now that I've seen the actual transcript, I'm not so sure my theory is confirmed. Part of it is that you weren't necessarily asking about the specific chemistry of it, so Brandon might not have gone into the detail that I would have wrangled out of him.

Quote

Ironeyes: So harmonium, we have a working theory that the reason it's so volatile is because some of the subatomic particles are associated with Ruin and some of them are [of?] Preservation. Is that true?
A: Yeah, that's basically what's going on is that it's creating a very unstable metal. Now, it is in the nature of the Cosmere not a compound but an element. But, you could call it a subatomic particle sure. It's very volatile because it is in nature spiritually in contrast with itself. And so though it is a single element rather than a compound, the spiritual nature is not happy as it is, and you can set up in the physical realm, through reactivity things that would just rip it apart and really your energy is not, your energy in that is actually pulling from the Spiritual realm, and so that's why it can be so much more explosive than even the chemistry would account for.
Ironeyes: So it's not that the subatomic particles are invested, it's that they have a spiritual identity which causes them to...
A: Yes.
Ironeyes: So then it's not creating an oxide because after the spiritual energy goes away from the explosion[unintelligible] metal, right?
A: Right, and...
Ironeyes: So you can't find harmonium oxide in the water afterwards.
A: Right right right right. Because it's not, it's, yeah.  But you might be able to find something else, which is really relevant to the cosmere. And to Scadrial.
Ironeyes: So the core elements, the core particles, having extra repulsion causes them to have a nuclear potential.
A: I would not call it nuclear because it's not the same exact thing. But there is a cosmere equivalent, to... I mean, you could do nuclear power just the same in the cosmere, but since we have a third kind of state of matter, right, matter, energy, Investiture, you have a third axis that you know, you can release energy from matter, you can release investiture from matter, and things like that. So it's similar, but following its own rules that I have a little more... that are controlled by me, right. But are built on this idea. So once you add [unintelligible for a few syllables] that matter can now exist in this third state, you get all sorts of weird things, which one of the things that happens is, you can get an energy release in sort of the same way. A reaction, I'm not going to call it a nuclear reaction, but of the same vein.

 

Source: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1o_-OadmbojDGZqFWls2meynCw4qLBWP-syEeSSgSRQ0/edit

Emphasis mine.

I'm not convinced that Brandon was operating on the same terms as we were. He should know that subatomic particles are protons, electrons, and neutrons. But, he seems to refer to Harmonium as a whole as a 'subatomic particle,' almost implying that it a fundamental particle in and of itself, not comprised of the usual pieces. Either that, or maybe he was accidentally thinking compounds were comprised of 'atoms,' and elements were comprised of "subatomic particles." (He was a chemistry dropout, after all. Alternatively, it could have been a momentary slip in the middle of a signing line.) I just don't get how it can be reacting with water, though, if it doesn't have electrons to give away. If it doesn't create an oxide at all, then it seems the water is just acting as a catalyst to trigger a breakdown of the harmonium.

Also, a lot of people seem to be saying that nuclear reactions work on e=mc^2, Brandon included. Which isn't the case. Nuclear fission works by splitting an atom's nucleus, releasing the energy that is holding the protons together. (The...weak nuclear force, I believe?) In an atomic bomb, yes, you will see some matter converting directly to energy. But Einsten's equation isn't the phenomenon we're concerned about when it comes to nuclear stability and radioactive decay. So, he's not talking about splitting the harmonium nucleus or even just keeping it from decaying to another element, he's talking about converting it from Investiture to energy.

Not saying I don't appreciate you asking the question, Ironeyes. This isn't that much further than I got from the Hoboken signing on the specific nature of its reactivity, but we weren't able to transcribe that, so it's great to have some exact words. And the stuff about interesting reaction byproducts is new. But I'll need to ask some more specific questions before I'd call my theory confirmed, and use some very exact terms like Orbital Structure, Electron Shielding, Nuclear Fission, and Quantized Investiture. (You already took care of Harmonium Oxide, which was one of my favorites.)

I'll update the original post to include my speculations on Ruinous Hydrogen. But, if Harmonium doesn't follow the usual orbital structure, then I think it opens up some pathways to other options for reaction byproducts, like atium, harmonium, or even solidified universal Investiture.

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@Pagerunner, I'm sure Brandon has a better grasp of the chemistry that it sounds like in this transcript. I feel pretty sure that at least some of the confusion is a tired brain. It's not easy to go on socializing and signing books for so long and then to suddenly dive into detailed chemistry/physics discussion. There's bound to be some brain farts.

My first interpretation of the "compound vs element" bit was that he was emphasizing that it behaves like a unique element. It's not a mixture of multiple things that can be subdivided cleanly. The comment about calling it a subatomic particle, however, seems to suggest that... it's not really an atom at all. He makes it sound like a completely unique phenomenon, not made of protons/neutrons/electrons. It interacts with other matter sort of like an element would, but it's not an atom. That's my interpretation, which could be way off from what he meant. And which again could be all based on a slip-up anyways.

Your point about the catalyst sounds right to me. That's... very interesting if correct.

Need to think about all this some more...

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I've been in two minds about this. At first I regarded it as general confirmation (if not clear or precise) of @Pagerunner's theory, which is one of my recent faves. Having looked more closely I feel Brandon is saying not that there are particles with Spiritual connection to Ruin and particles with Spiritual connection to Preservation, but that there is an element, comprised of course of sub-atomic particles, that is Spiritually connected to the merged Shard of Harmony. It's just that the merged Shard has its own internal conflict (disHarmony) and the particles connected to it are inherently unstable.

It's not a satisfactory answer from a proper particle physics point of view and more detailed questions would be needed. But I think he was saying that "you could call it a sub-atomic particle sure" because he's saying there's no spiritual difference between the element and the particles within - they are all of Harmony and Harmony is unstable.

Just speculation but I feel it solves the strange problem of why a guy with plenty of scientific knowledge and a team that beds down that scientific knowledge would sound like he's not distinguishing between an element (an atom) and the particles that comprise it.

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On 2/21/2017 at 6:44 PM, Extesian said:

I feel Brandon is saying not that there are particles with Spiritual connection to Ruin and particles with Spiritual connection to Preservation, but [...] that the merged Shard has its own internal conflict (disHarmony) and the particles connected to it are inherently unstable.

[...] I think he was saying that "you could call it a sub-atomic particle sure" because he's saying there's no spiritual difference between the element and the particles within - they are all of Harmony and Harmony is unstable.

I largely agree with this take on what he said. It makes a lot of sense, and I arrived at a similar conclusion, except for the particle vs element thing.

I listened to a lot of the audio to help transcribe the Boskone recordings, and Brandon frequently jumps back and forth between ideas in his responses, leaving thoughts and sentences uncompleted. So I think that the "it" in his different sentences refers to different things, and that explains the compound/element/particle confusion. Here is my interpretation of the WoB, with annotations of what I think he was implying. I know this is not the most natural way to interpret the quote from a grammatical perspective, but it does match his pattern of speaking.

Quote

Yeah, that's basically what's going on is that it's creating a very unstable metal. Now, it {Harmonium} is, in the nature of the Cosmere, not a compound but an element {which is to say, it isn't Lerasium + Atium, nor is it a mixture of Preservation cesium with Ruin cesium, in case that's what you were thinking}. But, you could call it {the investiture/spiritual identity that associates ettmetal with Ruin/Preservation} a subatomic particle, sure. It {Harmonium} is very volatile because it is in nature spiritually in contrast with itself. And so though it is a single element rather than a compound, the spiritual nature is not happy as it is, and you can set up in the physical realm, through reactivity things that would just rip it apart {you are right, there is some internal repulsion going on at a fundamental level}. And really your energy is not, your energy in that is actually pulling from the Spiritual realm, and so that's why it can be so much more explosive than even the chemistry would account for. 

 

Edited by ccstat
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Thanks @ccstat that takes what I suspected from interpreting the transcript and context only and gives it more weight, makes me more confident that's what he meant and it certainly makes some sense from what we know of Harmonium. I really liked the competing sub-atomic particle version but this...feels more right.

I won't make an attempt at a string theory theory, that's way beyond my pay grade :)

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50 minutes ago, Extesian said:

I won't make an attempt at a string theory theory, that's way beyond my pay grade :)

Anything that lets you have a "theory theory" should be treated with caution. ^_^

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8 minutes ago, ccstat said:

 

Anything that lets you have a "theory theory" should be treated with caution. ^_^

I don't understand your point... you should explain it more. Maybe post a new thread for your "theory theory" theory.

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5 minutes ago, Pagerunner said:

I don't understand your point... you should explain it more. Maybe post a new thread for your "theory theory" theory.

I've got a "theory theory" theory. It could be bunnies.

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Couldn't it be elemen 119, 136, 153, 170,etc.? We don't really know what the limits of atoms are, since there are supposed islands of stability, and also, in the cosmere, things are differnet to what we experience here on earth, e.g. temperatures may be higher, higher pressures. This would result in different ways of life to evolve and determines how stable an atom is, or how it's structured (I think). So, we might not be able to link the metals on Scadrial to the metals here on Earth, since everything is different. For example, here on Earth, diamonds are rare, but on a planet with high pressure and a high temperature, diamonds would be abundant and ice 1 (the type of ice we have on Earth, there are more than 17 types in total) would be nonexistent. Rather, you would find ice X, which freezes at 439 degrees C

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2 hours ago, Valette Renaitre said:

Couldn't it be elemen 119, 136, 153, 170,etc.? We don't really know what the limits of atoms are, since there are supposed islands of stability, and also, in the cosmere, things are differnet to what we experience here on earth, e.g. temperatures may be higher, higher pressures. This would result in different ways of life to evolve and determines how stable an atom is, or how it's structured (I think). So, we might not be able to link the metals on Scadrial to the metals here on Earth, since everything is different. For example, here on Earth, diamonds are rare, but on a planet with high pressure and a high temperature, diamonds would be abundant and ice 1 (the type of ice we have on Earth, there are more than 17 types in total) would be nonexistent. Rather, you would find ice X, which freezes at 439 degrees C

Sure, but you have to keep in mind that Scadrial is pretty similar to Earth. And my intuition is that Brandon wouldn't go and change things as fundamental as these without a very specific reason - and as a last resort. 

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2 hours ago, Valette Renaitre said:

Couldn't it be elemen 119, 136, 153, 170,etc.? We don't really know what the limits of atoms are, since there are supposed islands of stability, and also, in the cosmere, things are differnet to what we experience here on earth, e.g. temperatures may be higher, higher pressures. This would result in different ways of life to evolve and determines how stable an atom is, or how it's structured (I think). So, we might not be able to link the metals on Scadrial to the metals here on Earth, since everything is different. For example, here on Earth, diamonds are rare, but on a planet with high pressure and a high temperature, diamonds would be abundant and ice 1 (the type of ice we have on Earth, there are more than 17 types in total) would be nonexistent. Rather, you would find ice X, which freezes at 439 degrees C

The Island of Stability, as proposed, would involve half-lives of hours or days, as opposed to milliseconds. Relatively stable, but still nowhere near how long harmonium lasts. (Those who say it will be thousands or millions of years of stability are just looking for funding for their new particle accelerator.)

Scadrial is not that different an environment from Earth; Brandon has referred to it as an Earth analogue. Aside from some of the screwy magical things (i.e. kandra, mists), Scadrial is very much like Earth; same length of day and year, same weather, same size and gravity, similar flora and fauna once Sazed restored the planet. (The one notable difference is that Scadrial doesn't have a moon.) But, even in a different environment, that won't affect the fundamentals of the atom. Even though different phases of ice can and do occur (because that's a better way to think about it; water doesn't just have 3 phases of solid/liquid/gas, it has many phases that all behave slightly differently and form under different conditions), it's still fundamentally composed of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom bonded together. You might have molten metals or even vaporized metals on a different planet, but they would still be the same metals we have on earth: iron, copper, aluminum, etc.

Earlier in the thread, we had a discussion on fundamentally changing the atoms, because of added forces from Investiture. It went a little too deep into theoretical physics, and it got to the point where I handwave it away because any relative differences in the math are within 5%. Brandon chose real-life metals to use for Allomancy; he has built it using Earth physics. Harmonium has electrons, and reacts with water; that means it must fit somehow into the Periodic Table of Elements, which is structured around the way electrons organize and behave.

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