16 Apr 2022

Dragonriders of Pern

From Sci Fi / Sci Fact, 5:30 am on 16 April 2022

In the a science fantasy series by author Anne McCaffrey, the planet of Pern has been colonised by humans who have lost much of their technology and history due to periodic deluge of a destructive spore called Thread

The Pernese use intelligent fire-breathing dragons to fight Thread with the human rider developing a telepathic bond with their dragon.

Dragon, illustration. (Photo by VICTOR HABBICK VISIONS/SCIENCE P / VHB / Science Photo Library via AFP)


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Nicola Gaston

Dr Nicola Gaston Photo: The MacDiarmid Institute

Professor Nicola Gaston, MacDiarmid Institute Co-Director and Professor of Physics at the University of Auckland talks about Dragonriders of Pern  science fantasy series written by American author Anne McCaffrey.

Things like Lithium, potassium, sodium – they’re not uncommon metals, but they’re very rare in metallic form on this planet simply because we have an oxygen atmosphere so the idea that in rock form they could be chewed and produce a gas that is flammable… potentially.

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