## How long can a person survive in a low berth?

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
Moppy

### How long can a person survive in a low berth?

Assuming powered and maintained are we talking months, years, decades, forever, what?
Gentleman John
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

TNE mentioned people who had survived in low berths in automated shelters since the release of the Virus. So, we could be talking 75+ years here.
Reynard
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

There's the time travellers that spend their lives in low berth waking from time to time to view the future. Not sure how long this has been a thing. Probably since the invention of low berth. I'll bet the war and Virus was a wake up call.
JNJ
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

A T4 adventure (Sleepers, in Anomalies) is about finding thousands of pre-long night people laying in suspended animation ... 1628 years and 194 days since the last visit tells a robot.
phavoc
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

I woudn't say forever, but possibly a very long time. There isn't (as far as I know) an explanation on how slow time goes by while in suspended animation, but let's say your body's functions are slowed down to 1/100th of normal. So for every "day" in a low berth would equate to 100 days in normal time. A year in low berth would be roughly 3 days of aging to your body.

That seems relatively reasonable since it's slowing down your body, not creating a field where time stops. If you wanted to make it much longer than change the period to 1/1000th of normal. Which would mean roughly three years pass in real time for every day of low-berth time. A thousand years could pass for just one year of low-berth. Which seems very reasonable to me, as one might expect the machinery to begin failing after 1,000 years.
Old School
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

There are examples of VERY long times spent frozen as cited above, but those are rarely intentional. As for what would be considered “routine”, I would go with “years”, given the known concept of the navy’s frozen watch.
Gentleman John
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

And there were the sleeper ships that colonised the Islands sectors. That would support the view that low berths could be used to keep somebody alive for centuries at a stretch.
Condottiere
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

Depends on how invasive the procedure.

If its just deep freeze, than as long as the capsule has a consistent power supply, and has that annual maintenance.

Linwood
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

Once you get into the centuries range I’d add in a risk of failure for the berths. 1 per thousand with an MTBF measured in decades sounds reasonable as a starting point....
phavoc
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

Slow drug is 1/60th, so it's fair to expect that a low berth would be even more efficient at slowing metabolism. One key difference is that slow drug requires no external interface. Once administered it just work. Low berths require an external process (the low berth itself) to cryogenically freeze the user. We don't know how much power is required to sustain such a thing (like long can it work on internal power), or how much effort is required mechanically to keep it running.

I think it's fair to assume the mechanical side has been reduced to being very simple mechanically speaking, thus the MTBF of the units would be pretty high. However everything eventually stops working, so what would be a good period for a low berth to continually function with an occupant? Higher TL could translate into a longer-lasting unit, but I don't think the process would be much different from a lower TL.
Moppy

### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

100 years MTBF (mean time between failures) sounds great, but this means you can expect 1% of units to fail each year, assuming you have them in continuous operation. (If they're all started at once, chances are the failures will synchronise around a bellcurve)

I can see why MTBF is the preferred way to state it. AFR (annual failure rate) 1% sounds much worse than MTBF 100 years.
Reynard
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

The length of time a person can stay in low berth is relative to the low bid of the manufacturer.
Condottiere
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

I'd avoid using moving parts.

Permafrost?
Linwood
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

And electronic components with very very low FITs....
SSWarlock
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

Don't need a low berth.

Just drink the potion the old wise man with the gray beard gives you and say the words, "Klaatu varata nikto".
Sir Dhaven Hevelin, IOD, Baronet of Fulacin
Owner/Captain - S.S. Warlock

Playing Traveller/RQ/D&D since 1977
Condottiere
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

Linwood
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

Been slowly working my way thru Milieu 0. There’s an adventure in the T4 Anomalies book that establishes several thousand 2nd Imperium sleepers surviving for two millennia with roughly 50% mortality using cutting edge low berth tech. So that might help set the outer practical limit for discussion purposes.

Standard commercial low berths will not be built to that level of durability - it’s too expensive. And the rest of the support systems - especially power - would need to be designed to a similar standard.
dmccoy1693
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

Frankly, they should last as long as the plot of your game needs them to. If someone has been in there an hour shy if a century and they die when it hits exactly 100 years, and they have to race against time to get the person unthawed using the weird configuration of such an old tube, then that is what it is.
Moppy

### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

dmccoy1693 wrote:
Wed Oct 30, 2019 9:38 am
Frankly, they should last as long as the plot of your game needs them to. If someone has been in there an hour shy if a century and they die when it hits exactly 100 years, and they have to race against time to get the person unthawed using the weird configuration of such an old tube, then that is what it is.
That is kind of not an answer. It’s quite obvious for one individual low berth in one game session that it will be plot dependent but the technological limit matters for campaign consistency and affects the game setting.
Old School
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### Re: How long can a person survive in a low berth?

I agree with Dale. My games are going to be much more affected by that one low berth in the plot than by whatever the standard answer is. My campaigns have yet to suffer for this question not being answered.

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