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What is a Dyson Sphere?

8 Apr 2018, 11:00 UTC
What is a Dyson Sphere?
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The Dyson Sphere around a star. A future technology which could harness power and energy from a star by surrounding it with hexagon shaped satellites. Image credit: J. Wong
First proposed by theoretical physicist Freeman Dyson in 1960, a Dyson sphere is a hypothetical swarm of satellites that would surround a star in order to harness its energy. It is something that is well and truly only in the remit of being possible for a civilisation far more advanced than our own, but nevertheless it is something that has garnered significant interest since it was first theorised.
This particular idea is more commonly known as a Dyson swarm. Some people, however, have discussed the possibility of rather than a swarm of satellites a star could be encased in a solid sphere by a future civilisation, but this is an idea that Dyson himself is keen to stray away from. Indeed, for a planetary system like our own, such a structure would likely require every object in the Solar System other than the Sun to be dismantled and rebuilt into a giant sphere owing to the huge size of the Sun.
Dyson’s initial proposal was suggested as a way that a ...

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