Physics in Science Fiction

The following is a "slides and notes" version of a talk, written and presented to the Johns Hopkins University Society of Physics Students by Andrew E. Love Jr, a long-standing subscriber, and frequent contributor, to the Larry Niven mail list.

Real Ringworld Stability Plot


Here's the real Ringworld potential function, calculated by integrating the total force on the Ring - note the rapid drop off. That's why even with attitude jets, the Ring is probably only metastable - a big perturbation might overwhelm the jets' ability to restore the Ringworld to its proper place.

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