Supernova Condensate is a blog about our place in the Universe. Of astronomy, chemistry and life in the big bad bubble of academia.
Invader Xan is a molecular astrophysicist and part-time alien invader, who spends life looking at very small things on very large scales, and trying to better understand the chemistry of interstellar space.
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Category Archives: astrotropes
Ah, astrotropes. It’s been a while. So I’ve decided to delve back into the world of science fiction to see what truth may lie hidden between the laser blasts and epic space battles. The topic I’m examining this time? Ocean … Continue reading
I absolutely have to mention this. “Do Not Feed the Aliens” is an enchanting little short story, courtesy of my friend Ursula WJ. An excerpt… “I just wondering how the research was getting on. In a more general kind of … Continue reading
For anyone who found my musings about Darwin IV in the Starfish Aliens astrotrope interesting, the whole Alien Planet documentary is available to watch on YouTube. It’s an hour and a half long though, so you may want to get … Continue reading
Inspired in no small way by recent ponderings at Centauri Dreams concerning how alien an alien might be, let’s continue the Astrotropes series with the concept of starfish aliens. In stark contrast with the humanoid aliens I looked at previously, … Continue reading
Think of the biggest oversight you can in all of sci fi. One thing so fundamental to our daily lives that the idea doesn’t even register that it should be questioned. Unfortunately, it’s also the one thing which should literally … Continue reading
From Star Wars to Pitch Black, Dune to Starship Troopers, the trope of the desert planet is widely recognised. So widely recognised, in fact, that all you really need to show in any sci fi offering is a single scene … Continue reading
In Space Battles part 1, I discussed the basics of how real life space combat might work and why the crew of a Battlestar would need to be good astronomers to get the upper hand on their opponents. In part … Continue reading
The idea of habitable moons is, in my humble opinion, one of the most interesting science fiction tropes out there. And surprisingly, there’s nothing written on TV Tropes about them. I find this a little bizarre, because science fiction of all kinds … Continue reading
This trope is used all the time. It’s incredibly rare for it not to be used, in fact. And I must say, it’s one thing which I frequently find disappointing about sci fi. I am, of course, talking about the … Continue reading