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"If I had to get a new Ph.D. now, I'd get it in polymer engineering - the manipulation of matter."
- Bart Kosko

Vehicle Seeds  
  A matrix of materials and instructions that allow vehicles to grow themselves when placed in an environment of plentiful materials.  

It does't make sense to carry all of the materials for vehicles and weapons all the way to Titan, when you can find all the materials you could ever want right there, quick to hand.

These organic compounds will provide plenty of the raw materials used by our weapon and vehicle seeds to double and even triple their present mass...

"These are your rudimentary seed packages," Bueller says. "Some will combine in place to form more complicated structures, like excavators or centipedes. Others will take more time and grow out to full size by themselves, mostly the vehicles supporting big weapons - zap guns, ionics, penetrators. Once placed in their cradles beside the station, all the seeds will dip from the station storage tanks, and they'll also start pulling in gases and liquids from the local atmosphere...

...visuals of seeds sprouting, growing like carnival balloons plumping out, becoming monstrous, making crew and warrior spaces...

From Killing Titan, by Greg Bear.
Published by Orbit in 2015
Additional resources -

"Seeds are hungry," she says... "Don't get between them and raw material reserves. Don't mess with anything growing. Half-finished product has been known to absorb whatever it touches. Stay the hell away from developing products."

Compare to biological circuit fabrication from The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (1984).

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Killing Titan
  More Ideas and Technology by Greg Bear
  Tech news articles related to Killing Titan
  Tech news articles related to works by Greg Bear

Vehicle Seeds-related news articles:
  - Chemputer To Grow Bespoke Drones Through Chemistry

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