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In the ringworld-novels of Larry Niven the author uses a giant ring around the sun as setting. The concept that is going more extrem in this direction is a Sphere around a sun. That concept is called Dyson Sphere. Does a work of SF explores this concept?

10 Answers 10

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Yes, there's a list of them at Dyson spheres in popular culture. The idea originated in a novel called Star Maker.

  • Wow, what a list. – Mnementh Jan 11 '11 at 22:13
  • @Mnementh: I'm definitely looking forward to reading some of those. The Ringworld itself was my favorite part of that novel. – Bill the Lizard Jan 11 '11 at 22:16
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If you don't count just the written word, one of the episodes of Star Trek: TNG does. The episode is called "Relics."

This episode was also novelized by Michael Jan Friedman, and a sequel novel named Dyson Sphere was written by Charles Pellegrino and George Zebrowski.

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Bob Shaw's Orbitsville novels:

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The 'The Time Ships' (1995) by Stephen Baxter has the most interesting depiction of a Dyson Sphere I have read in Science Fiction. The novel is a sequel to the classic ‘The Time Machine’ (1895) by H. G. Wells (where there are no Dyson Spheres).

A more recent book with a memorable Dyson Swarm is ‘House of Suns’ (2008) by Alastair Reynolds.

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In Accelerando, civilizations that advance past the technological singularity tend to build concentric Dyson swarms of computronium around their stars, a construction known as a matrioshka brain.

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In Iain M Banks book, Matter on the Shellworld of Sursamen, which is multiple concentric dyson shells built on top of each other with a artificial sun on each level and each level holding a more advanced alien race than the level below. In the core lives a super advanced alien, and on level 7 lives the parasites that lived on the shell of the advanced alien, but have advanced enough to have the their own level.

  • The Shellworld is not a dyson spere... a shell that completely encloses a natural star. The Shellworld in Matter is described as planet sized. – iandotkelly Jun 1 '12 at 2:45
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In "Implied Spaces", by Walter Jon Williams, there are several Dyson spheres, although they are each in their own closed universe, reachable only by wormhole so it's maybe not your run-of-the-mill Dyson sphere.

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The Halo universe has Dyson Spheres. The setting of Halo:Wars was a Dyson Sphere.

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The ones that come to mind, are:

A gravity pulse from a research station awakens an alien buried in the moon who opens a wormhole and takes Earth elsewhere. And the chaos that ensues.

Turns out there is a species that grabs planets, and brings them into solar systems where they have already built Dyson Spheres.

Great series. By Roger Allen Macbride

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Already many good answers... I'll just throw out the Virga series by Schroeder, starting with the first book in the series, Sun of Suns. It is a fantastic series, with each book continuing the story, focusing on a different main character.

  • I argree virga is a great series! – user5959 Apr 22 '12 at 4:00

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