Was Zeon Mining Titanium At Odessa?

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Gelgoog Jager
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Was Zeon Mining Titanium At Odessa?

Post by Gelgoog Jager » Mon Jan 16, 2017 2:21 pm

Recent discussions leading to the armor materials of OYW MS have made me wonder if the reason early Zeon MS use Super High Tensile Steel as their armor material might be because of Zeon lacking Titanium.

For quick reference, supposedly Zeon's amphibious MS, starting with early models such as the MSM-02 and MSM-03-1 first deployed in May, were already using Titanium Ceramic Composite armor. As we know some later units such as the UMP units, the MS-18E and even the OYW designed AMX-002 also used this newer armor material.

Another important detail is that we know that MS-01 used hardened rubber for its feet soles, but such feature had to be abandoned for the mass production models due to a ban the EF imposed on a Side 3 for petroleum products.

So, what if the real reason the MS-05 series and onward used SHTS armor is because the EF set a similar ban or restriction on Titanium for Side 3? In such case, the fact that Zeon MS with TCC armor began appearing a few months after the beginning of the Earth invasion could point towards Titanium being one of the resources Zeon was seeking when they decide to capture Odessa.

Lastly, if we consider that M'Quve said that at the time he abandoned Odessa base he had already sent enough resources to space for allowing Zeon to fight for another 10 years, maybe we could consider that these resources did end up used by Axis/First Neo Zeon, which despite their difficult situation managed to mass produce hundreds of new MS with Gundarium Gamma armor, something which later Neo Zeon movements couldn't achieve, nor any other post-Gryps War factions.

Food for thought: since the MSM series war produced at California Base, and the MS-09G seems to have used TCC armor before being upgraded with GG armor (or at least as per my suspicion on the RGM-79R -> RGM-86R similar armor change), I wonder if more of Californian Base's designs might actually use TCC armor instead of SHTS. I would also like to assume that at least the MS-07H8 (and the derived MS-07B3) might have also used TCC armor as a weight reduction measure to make the design more viable. On the other hand, I wonder if the ground use Dom series' hovering system might have allowed the design to keep using SHTS, by making the added weight of little consequence for its ground movement.

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MythSearcher
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Re: Was Zeon Mining Titanium At Odessa?

Post by MythSearcher » Fri Jan 20, 2017 2:50 pm

I wonder. Titanium is not really that scarced. It may not be as abundant as carbon and iron, but still pretty abundant compared to a lot of solid materials.
The moon probably as about 10~12% TiO2, so Granada should provide enough for Zeon to work with. Asteroids possibly has a similar amount, and considering Solomon and ABQ being mined to the core, even if they only have around 5% TiO2, you still get much much more than enough for a few thousand MSs and a few hundred of colonies.

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Gelgoog Jager
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Re: Was Zeon Mining Titanium At Odessa?

Post by Gelgoog Jager » Sat Jan 21, 2017 10:51 pm

In such case, the real question might be: when did Zeon gained access to those Titanium sources?

I tried finding the dates when Zeon captured Granada, Solomon, Pezun and A Baoa Qu, but haven't had any luck so far. Assuming these were captured just before or during the opening days of the war, it could still justify why Zeon would build MS-06F and MS-06J units (which were supposedly already undergoing mass production) with older SHTS instead of Titanium.

That being said, it would be interesting to figure out what resources was Zeon was still seeking at Odessa, just a couple of months after forcing the remaining EFSF forces to holed up at Luna II. At that point they would be able to claim any resources they needed from the other Sides and the moon, as well as any resource asteroids. If those sources had everything Zeon needed, then simply intensifying the extraction at those sites might have sufficed.

If despite having such availability of resources in space, they still deemed necessary to capture the Odessa region, there must have been indispensable resources not available anywhere in space. Also, there's M'Quve's claim about whatever resources were being extracted at Odessa being necessary for Zeon to continue the war in the long term.

All that being said, perhaps at the time the first TV series came out, along the reference materials, it wasn't certain how readily available was Titanium on the moon, let alone the asteroid belt.

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Re: Was Zeon Mining Titanium At Odessa?

Post by MythSearcher » Sun Jan 22, 2017 6:19 am

Gelgoog Jager wrote:In such case, the real question might be: when did Zeon gained access to those Titanium sources?

I tried finding the dates when Zeon captured Granada, Solomon, Pezun and A Baoa Qu, but haven't had any luck so far. Assuming these were captured just before or during the opening days of the war, it could still justify why Zeon would build MS-06F and MS-06J units (which were supposedly already undergoing mass production) with older SHTS instead of Titanium.

That being said, it would be interesting to figure out what resources was Zeon was still seeking at Odessa, just a couple of months after forcing the remaining EFSF forces to holed up at Luna II. At that point they would be able to claim any resources they needed from the other Sides and the moon, as well as any resource asteroids. If those sources had everything Zeon needed, then simply intensifying the extraction at those sites might have sufficed.

If despite having such availability of resources in space, they still deemed necessary to capture the Odessa region, there must have been indispensable resources not available anywhere in space. Also, there's M'Quve's claim about whatever resources were being extracted at Odessa being necessary for Zeon to continue the war in the long term.

All that being said, perhaps at the time the first TV series came out, along the reference materials, it wasn't certain how readily available was Titanium on the moon, let alone the asteroid belt.
I'd think of it from another angle.
Either they do not have the industrial technology to process the Ti into something more efficient than the SHTS (productivity wise), or they lacked other important material in the TCC to produce it into large quantities.
Sometimes its not only about the direct resources, you may lack another substance that is not really in the final product, but it is needed in the production. Say, you may need lots of rubber or plastic in the production machines of TCC, and there is no alternative material for that one particular step, so you do need to have a large supply of Earthly materials, say rubber trees or petroleum for the rubber or plastic.

I always assumed Solomon and ABQ are in the hands of Zeon for quite a long time already, since those are mining sites for building colonies, and are considered exhausted.
Tried to find sources for that, first come in view is 0072 the start of building asteroid base Axis. They finished the militarization of Solomon and ABQ within the OYW (Solomon finished in May 0079 and the Final Defence line of Solomon, ABQ and Granada was set right after that in June)
Gundam Officials didn't include the completion of ABQ base in the timeline, but said it was finished in June 0079 in ABQ's entry.(and considered it as the last of the three to finish)
Solomon's entry further eleborated that it was used as a base in the beginning of the OYW, since it was used in Battle of Loum where Zeon fleets were gathered and deployed from.
Since ABQ was directly dragged from the asteroid belt to L2's Halo orbit, I assume it was under Zeon control from the very beginning when Zeon was founded.
Granada's entry gave us the idea that it was occupied by Zeon in OYW, but actually was under Zeon control before that. It's power production even relied on Side 3 and its economic activities are tied to Side 3, They refused to have Federation Forces setting up base there and helped Zeon to keep the training of MS a secret(in which they have a pretty good view at)

That being said, yes, you are right. Having read some of L5 News, in the 70's, the Lunar Soil composition was said to be: 42% O, 21% Si, 13% Fe, 8% Ca, 7% Al, 6% Mg and 3% Others.
So they don't know that's so many Ti up there in MSG.
Also, Military use of Ti is pretty new, both USA and Soviet Union only started using it in the 50's, and likely still highly classified in the 70's, at least it wouldn't be easily accessible information in Japan. So in early 80's, they may have considered Ti as a rare and expensive material to use, so it still sounded cool and they only use it on the newer MS. This likely changed in mid to late 80's, where Ti became more and more common, and thus later settings like in 0080 would start using Ti in even the older and less powerful sounding MS like the MS-06FZ.

Anyway, considering Fe to be much more abundant than Ti, its not that strange to still use Steel as their main building material.

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Gelgoog Jager
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Re: Was Zeon Mining Titanium At Odessa?

Post by Gelgoog Jager » Thu Feb 09, 2017 7:22 pm

Very interesting info!

I agree that there could be other factors that could have influenced Zeon not to use Titanium for their MS armor material, however I would like to think that in a different context the armor material would have been something that sounded reasonable at the time in IRL. For instance, Gundam 0080 sounds like the prime example of trying to update things, by having both sides use Titanium Ceramic Composite armor on most of their MS, which by the 80's might have seen like a realistic armor material IRL.

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