Deth Rei

Anthony Repetto
3 min readFeb 17, 2024

~ but… it’s just a balloon? ~

Photo by Samantha Gades on Unsplash

Before any details on this terrifying new design, just imagine the scenario:

Your troops have settled-into their new position, looking out across the rocky valley, artillery forward and ready to rain hell on anyone trying to move toward the mountain pass. A bulwark of sandbags encase the entrance to the tunnel system leading deeper into the rock. You feel good.

Yet — One-hundred and fifty MILES away, to the South East, a balloon is rising in time with the new dawn. Within moments of the sunlight first illuminating your base, that transparent balloon far-beyond-touch is BENDING the sunlight, tilting every incident line towards your base. The Helium within that clear, plastic balloon is acting like a LENS; the gas is working just like the glass normally would!

And, to be able to bend that light, the Helium Balloon must be enormous — hundreds of feet across, and lenticular like a Happy Birthday balloon. That enormous size is also precisely what was necessary, to capture as much solar heating as what is produced by a Nuclear Power Plant! That kaleidoscopic kiln is now melting the sandbags outside, and all the men there were instantly blinded, scorched and screaming in pain, falling dead before they could take cover. The heat of the air and the rock is beginning to bake everyone in the tunnel, pushing the remaining men further inside. Then, all the ammunitions and gas tanks outside begin to explode, one after another. The conflagration siphons the air out of your tunnel, and you sink into a carbon monoxide-induced slumber, in less than fifteen minutes.

And these balloons are CHEAP!

Key Design Details:

With all their equipment strung in a gondola beneath the Balloon-Lens, that gondola is the plumb-bob to align the beam, as well as being the center of inertia, for propulsion-steering systems. By spooling that gondola’s cables, in each of the four directions, then that plumb-bob serves to TILT the Balloon-Lens into position. Within the Balloon, stretching between both faces of the Lens, are numerous ‘catenary’ cables on a grid-pattern. These catenary cables can also be spooled, to warp the shape of the Lens, for near-to-far targeting AND wide-or-narrow intensity.

These ‘Deth Rei’ can float on the winds, hundreds of miles a day, only using gondola power when they need to steer or squeeze the balloon for descent into other wind-directions. They can hit targets 150 miles to either side, in the same day, and swipe-across vast areas, igniting anything flammable and destroying communications infrastructure. They have UNLIMITED Ammo, with NO logistical load, no supply-line. They are un-manned, disposable, mass-produced.

And, when you aren’t using them in battle — they can crack surface-rock through rapid heat-cycling (just jitter them across a large swath of rocky terrain, a few seconds per spot) for fast and capital-efficient, zero-carbon MINING operations! They’ll make a lot of material, AND they can beam for Kilns and Ore Processing Facilities, with unmatched mobility and versatility, compared to stationary solar farms. In fact, you should probably just make a lot of them, for the green-mining market, and then you have a built-in deterrent against invaders! Anyone who brings a navy or army within 150 Miles of your borders is at risk… so you’re safe to go WITHOUT most of the other military, now, which would save a lot of MONEY!

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