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[THEORY] Observations on Atlas Lift

This topic contains 11 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  louthinator 2 years, 5 months ago.

#39869
Fenix
Moderator
Moderator

I came up with this a while ago in another topic – but I’d like to expand upon it and post here. 🙂

Atlas, that marvelous mineral which hefts ship and soil into the sky. But how does it work? Why are the islands seemingly locked into place, while ships can list and bob in the gentle breeze?

As you may already know, Atlas stones do not have levitation properties by themselves. Instead, they only gain such qualities when exposed to electrical current.

So in order for there to be passively floating islands, there must be some natural electromagnetic field everywhere, permeating the planet, agitating the Atlas to lift. In the real world, it is fairly common for planets (and even some moons) to have a permanent electromagnetic field, mostly for those with a liquid core which spins at a decent rate. In Earth’s case, it is quite strong for the planet’s size and this is what shields us from stellar radiation. Getting back to Foundation, perhaps the catastrophe which shattered this world was actually something which radically altered or supercharged the planet’s natural magnetic field, to the point of putting out a low electrical charge over the entire planet. This could possibly explain why islands rich in Atlas are able to float by themselves.

But then why can’t ships float if they simply bolt some raw Atlas ore to their hull – or make their frames out of Atlas itself? I imagine it’s a matter of concentration and refinement of the ore. Perhaps large amounts of raw Atlas recursively amplify the effect and can function on a lower electrical charge. So in order to float without any assistance, you’d need an island’s worth of Atlas. Conversely, if you artificially amp up the current, smaller refined chunks of the ore can provide greater lift. Hence the need for the Skyship core assembly. A purified sample of Atlas placed into an apparatus which delivers not just stronger current, but also allows you to control the amount. This could explain how ships are able to levitate up and down at will: the pilots are manipulating the current being applied to the core, which in turn generates varying amounts of lift.

Finally, why are the islands seemingly locked in place, while ships lifted via cores are not? Quantum Locking and Flux pinning. Essentially the raw Atlas ore has imperfections which allow some of the planet’s magnetic field to penetrate, creating a snare and thus locking it in place. Atlas Cores, with their refined ore do not have such imperfections and are not subject to getting snagged in place like islands. Additionally, the sheer mass of islands may also be a factor in their immobility. It would take far more force to move such a massive object than the wind (or humanity’s meager engines) could muster to overcome the landmass’s inertia.

#40194
Ramanujo
Participant

Pretty interesting! Until now I didn’t know that is how Atlas worked, thanks for the info. On that post you linked it describes the overzealous mining as the cause for Foundation breaking apart. It makes sense (fictionally anyways) that these islands began to rise and spread apart to the Atlas being ‘activated’ by an electromagnetic event.

As for the story behind the islands not moving, I had just assumed the considerable mass that they hold was responsible for the inertia that kept them still. Lore aside, Luke revealed on stream the reasons behind making the islands immovable.

#40382
louthinator
Participant

i mean lets also not forget that unlike the earth the mass of foundation could be lower due to less heavy minerals in its core and as the planet broke apart only the crust actually broke away. The parts of the crust that we are flying between are actually orbiting the still spinning mantle and core but in such a low orbit that we are still in atmosphere. however as we have seen with the moon something that is orbiting something spinning faster than it is can create tidal friction, and for something in atmosphere tidal friction can lead to a huge electrical build up of opposite charges, but instead of doing what it does on earth and cause lightning storms, its turning the islands into giant electrons orbiting around a central nucleus. of course how does that keep people locked to the ground you might wonder? well people eat. the minerals contained within the food come from the ground.. the same one carrying the massive electrical charge that is keeping the islands locked to the nucleus. either that or it could be just inertia. perhaps that is why we cant go too low in the world because if we get too close to the mantle that stored up charge discharges in one huge bolt (and if you’ve ever seen a lightning strike you know how that goes) of course you may be wondering, well how does atlas make us float then? its simple. whenever you apply a current to atlas it works like a small emitter of the opposite charge to the one that keeps you rooted to the ground. it negates some of the pulling force allowing you to float. the reason the islands dont need refined atlas to float is they are caught in the middle of centripetal force, gravity and magnetism but if refined the atlas will loosen your bonds to the core and allow you to float.

thats just my take on it though.

#40478
Agertor
Participant

While the planets magnetic forces could power it if sufficient enough, I would imagine electrical currents would need to be stronger. Now depending on the minerals that are conductive in the islands. Could there not be reverse storms where lightning actually would hit the metals from below, and as discharged, could it not then power? I feel a weak force like the magnetic field wouldnt be enough at all. But lightning is a very strong force. Just my two cents but I am no scientist, just a diplomat.

#44076
Nausical_Nudibranch
Participant

This is my take on the same topic.

My current hypothesis for the islands ability to float and the reason for their periodic sinking and reemergence.

The raw Atlas mineral has the inherent ability to store an electrical charge for a limited amount of time. When in large quantities (such as an island) or in a highly refined state (such as a Skyship core) this charge takes a relatively long period of time to be used up or to dissipate.

From what I’ve seen so far in game-play videos, the “abyss-o-sphere”(I’m going to call it,) below the survivable altitudes has a very volatile weather system with what looks to be a high occurrence of lightning strikes. This suggests that for what ever reason there is an ample amount of positively and negatively charged ions exchanging electric charge regularly. This could be contributed to by magnetic anomalies left as a remnant of what ever the catastrophe was.

I believe that once an islands charge is used up or dissipates, the atlas material no longer has a strong enough influence to grip (see “quantum locking”) onto the geomagnetic field-lines and the island begins to sink back into the abyssosphere, where it is subjected to intense exposure to the aforementioned weather phenomena, effectively recharging it like a battery. When the Atlas mineral is in a sufficiently charged state it has enough influence to grip onto the abnormally strong magnetic field being produced by the planets core, forcing it away from the planets surface where the magnetic field is most chaotic/strongest, back towards a “sweet spot” in altitude within the thinner parts of the geomagnetic field at higher altitudes.
This could also be why we do not see islands within the “storm walls.” The storms themselves could be a result of irregularities of the geomagnetic field at certain points along the planets surface. Creating regions where the magnetic field is too concentrated for islands to penetrate. (Like a marble running up against the side of a bowl.)

Then wouldn’t we see lost Sky-ship cores regularly rising out of and sinking back into the abyssosphere as islands do?

This, I assert, is due to the unnaturally high refinement of the Atlas mineral relative to it’s compact size. Since it is so small and so well adjusted to storing electromagnetic energy, the high energy weather phenomena within the abyssosphere is simply too strong for the material to handle. This results in an over-charging and subsequent catastrophic failure of the crystalline structure, culminating in an endothermic reaction and destruction of the Atlas mineral the core is comprised of.

This, of course, is merely conjecture. *Haw haw haw…*

#44087
louthinator
Participant

*adjusts glasses in the typical nerdy way and straightens some papers*

from my observations of both pre-cataclysm texts and of the effects of atlas observed on the islands of the worlds adrift I think we have it backwards here. I think the atlas itself is the thing emitting an electromagnetic influence in the islands that creates some kind of anti-gravity effect for things that have atlas embedded in them, not only that but I believe the influence is so strong that it effects the weather, this creates interesting phenomenon like storm walls between islands but those storm walls then create a feedback loop because the unusual weather creates temperature gradients across the islands with the atlas ore buried within it. Atlas ore seems to be a mixture of different metals together in one clump and the refining process melts off those other metals to leave the atlas behind considering the different metals have different melting points and different densities allowing for the pure elemental atlas to be distilled off from the waste material.

you may be wondering where I’m going with all of this

well as some of you may know if you have dissimilar metals together and put a temperature gradient across them then you start observing the Seebeck effect where those metals then begin generating a voltage across the atlas.

you see something bugged me with all of the current theories about atlas and that is if its so simple to activate atlas then why hasn’t an upheaval like this happened before? how did foundation ever exist if atlas was so common in the crust? and my answer to that is this: the cataclysm was man made. something strong enough to generate a temperature gradient across all of foundation causing a mass activation of atlas due to the Seebeck effect and that started this infinite feedback loop which has turned the world into what it is today.

Also to add onto what @nausical_nudibranch was saying, I think the reason the islands rise and fall is because the floating islands don’t rotate at the same speed the core of the planet does meaning some islands sit on different parts of thew core’s natural magnetic field. some poles will be opposites causing the islands to sink as it is attracted towards the core, others will have the same pole causing them to be repelled and rise.

as a last point the way that the atlas cores in ships work is that because you are removing the other dissimilar metals from the atlas you are removing the Seebeck effect and from that point on you can control the direction of the poles using whatever power system is rigged up the atlas core’s containment cage allowing you to ascend, descend and maintain altitude as the atlas core rolls with the natural magnetic field of the world.

#44553
Vick-Viper89
Moderator
Moderator

Good theory but i do think that the answer to the floating islands and current through the atlas itsself could be answered in the fact that theres a maelstrom above the abyss, my theory was that the energy invested in the ground from all the strikes of lightning after a time give the ground and area of the lightning strike enough energy to rise from the abyss, stabilizing in the sky once the energy in the islands stops spiking, after a time the atlas stone loses the charge given to it by the lightning and falls to the abyss once again. could also account for the fact that when players harvest the atlas they cant harvest the atlas embedded inside the island itsself only on the surface of the islands.

and do the point with atlas cores not rising above the abyss i think that it would simply be because of the fact that if the lightning stuck the atlas core itsself it would destroy the core and/or shatter the stone.

#44556
Vick-Viper89
Moderator
Moderator

also (off topic i know but whatevs) i still think the atlas stones themselves came from the moon 😛

[shameless theory plug] https://www.worldsadrift.com/forums/topic/theory-time/

#45573
louthinator
Participant

also (off topic i know but whatevs) i still think the atlas stones themselves came from the moon 😛

[shameless theory plug] https://www.worldsadrift.com/forums/topic/theory-time/

with the heavy dispersal of atlas in the ground all over foundation it would be geologically impossible for it to have arrived specifically for the time of the cataclysm. it would have to be native to the planet to achieve that.

also

i do think that the answer to the floating islands and current through the atlas itsself could be answered in the fact that theres a maelstrom above the abyss, my theory was that the energy invested in the ground from all the strikes of lightning after a time give the ground and area of the lightning strike enough energy to rise from the abyss, stabilizing in the sky once the energy in the islands stops spiking,

this doesnt account for the fact that islands can be above other islands and still rise. there has to be something happening within the island here

#45622
BinaryBlackhole
Participant

Most theories assume that atlas is an element with unique properties. However there are problems such as a pre cataclysm world. One solution to this is that atlas is a compound of multiple elements. If so we can assume that an increase in atlas likely due to human actions resulted in the cataclysm. If atlas is indeed a compound the question is which element or elements enable such unique attributes? As well as the question of whether we can make other alloys for different purposes ranging from a more efficient atlas to those unknown possibilities.

#45671
Vick-Viper89
Moderator
Moderator

with the heavy dispersal of atlas in the ground all over foundation it would be geologically impossible for it to have arrived specifically for the time of the cataclysm. it would have to be native to the planet to achieve that.

My theory was that it falls naturally from the moon and has done for who knows how long. that would account for the fact that it would seem to be natural in the world

this doesnt account for the fact that islands can be above other islands and still rise. there has to be something happening within the island here

If an island has to rise through denser parts of the maelstrom it could cost it some energy and end up settling lower in the sky, or if it comes to a high pressure system it could lack the energy to rise any further, that would be based on weather patterns in different areas when the island rises. If the land that breaks off the core is larger or has different amounts of energy stored. theres many things that could account for the different altitudes of the islands based on my theory

#45784
louthinator
Participant

theres many things that could account for the different altitudes of the islands based on my theory

what about the core of your theory which states that the island has ot come into contact with this maelstrom in the void in order to recharge in which case a situation like this

island 1: 1000m

island 2: 500m

Void

would see island 1 crashing into island 2 on its way back down to the void or a highly charged electrical bolt going up through island 2 and roasting everything on island 2.. but we don’t see that. this is why i think that the Seebeck effect is involved here. a way to generate electricity due to temperature gradients.

My theory was that it falls naturally from the moon and has done for who knows how long. that would account for the fact that it would seem to be natural in the world

not quite.. if you look at space rocks that have fallen onto earth from other worlds (things like iridium) you’ll notice something… despite the fact iridium has been falling to earth for billions of years from space its incredibly rare. that’s because the earth is a huge place and pieces falling to earth that are small enough not to cause mass extinctions even over billions of years don’t leave us much to work with. it would be the same for atlas if it came from external sources and wasn’t produced en masse during the formation of the planet.

to add to that if there is atlas on the moon dont forget that the moon came from a chunk of the earth after a collision with Thea during the formation of the planet. assuming foundation’s moon came about in a similar way then the atlas on the moon would have come from foundation anyway.

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