Why the Absence of Dyson Megastructures Means We Are the First Civilization in This Corner of the Universe?

Erasmo Acosta
Predict
Published in
7 min readMay 4, 2022

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Image Credit: Rebekah Smith

Energy! Our civilization craves it, but we are awash in it. Every second, the Sun generates nearly 500,000 times humanity’s energy consumption for an entire year. This fact has led to a six-decade-long obsession with Dyson spheres: hypothetical megastructures by super-advanced alien beings to harness a star and provide billions of times a planet’s surface by inhabiting its interior.

Nevertheless, a Dyson sphere might break the laws of physics. First, we can’t conceive a material that can sustain the stress of such a structure. Second, it will have no gravity, so everything inside will fall into the star.

A Dyson swarm is far closer to even our modest means because it consists of independent space colonies that we can build one at a time over a long period, keeping up with population growth. In about 1,000 years — a timeline that, although long to humans, is minuscule in the scale of the universe — a sheer number of these colonies will surround the Sun delivering all the advantages of a Dyson sphere.

Furthermore, with a microscopic power allotment from our star, we can accelerate colony ships to a sizable fraction of light speed, reaching neighboring stars in just decades and conquering our galaxy within a million…

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Erasmo Acosta
Predict

Casualty of Corporate America. Sci-fi writer. Science Junkie. Learn about my dystopian novel K3+ at https://erasmixbooks.blogspot.com