Insultingly stupid movie physics

Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Mikey » Fri Mar 04, 2011 6:57 pm

GrahamKennedy wrote:I always assumed that V'Ger slowed them down as it released them. The alternative is that it deliberately left them in a state which would crash them into its own innards, which seems a bit odd.


Or allowed them to use their own thrusters after it released them. Or...

The point is, I think, more of this instance being exemplary rather than taken entirely on its own. This is a perfect example of the widespread idea (in its various incarnations) of spaceships requiring acceleration to maintain a given velocity, as vehicles do which are affected by drag and gravity. Even if we assume that the E-D was in a 1-atm atmosphere - like the Voyager chamber in which Kirk &co. disembarked - that's not nearly enough drag to stop them instantaneously from any speed.
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Reliant121 » Fri Mar 04, 2011 7:00 pm

Could V'Ger have it's own center of gravity?
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Captain Picard's Hair » Fri Mar 04, 2011 7:20 pm

Reliant121 wrote:Could V'Ger have it's own center of gravity?


All bodies which have mass have a gravitational field. But, since the center of mass of the V'Ger cloud was likely still ahead of Enterprise rather than behind her it wouldn't bring her to a stop. Actually, some counter-force would be be necessary to oppose gravity in such a case.
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Reliant121 » Fri Mar 04, 2011 7:43 pm

Interesting.

Perhaps the E-A computers automatically recorrected to the last order. IIRC the E-A held position outside V'Ger's "docking bay", meaning the last order the ship had was to hold position. Perhaps, once the forces exerted on the ship had gone, the computer automatically reverted to the last command input.
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby thelordharry » Sat Apr 16, 2011 9:52 pm

http://memory-alpha.org/wiki/Horizon_(episode)

OK, in this episode, to escape some baddies, they jettison some cargo to go faster.

I initially thought, weight, in space (take grav plating offline) but then I thought, well, does the size or mass of something take more ooomph for the warp engines?

Or is this a fine case of stupid physics?
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Mikey » Sat Apr 16, 2011 10:44 pm

Well, mass can be a factor. It is one of the determinants of work; and the less work necessary to achieve a particular delta-v, the less energy/power demand to do so. Conversely, that could be said the other way round - a given amount of power/energy (from the ship's power-generation system) will allow for a greater acceleration if there is less mass.

That's the technicality of it; the practical application in this case is that it probably wouldn't help much. One-half mass is the factor in figuring work, and whatever they jettisoned - unless they were carrying a spare neutron star or two - is likely to have a completely insignificant amount of mass compared to the ship itself.
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Graham Kennedy » Sat Apr 16, 2011 10:56 pm

thelordharry wrote:http://memory-alpha.org/wiki/Horizon_(episode)

OK, in this episode, to escape some baddies, they jettison some cargo to go faster.

I initially thought, weight, in space (take grav plating offline) but then I thought, well, does the size or mass of something take more ooomph for the warp engines?

Or is this a fine case of stupid physics?


For a real spaceship there's no top speed except c. So dropping mass wouldn't make you any faster, but it would let you accelerate more. In a chase that could make a difference.

In Trek, warp drive doesn't work like that. There is a top speed for some reason. Before Horizon I don't think anybody had ever said that lightening a ship made it faster, but it does make intuitive sense, at least to me.
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby shran » Thu Jun 02, 2011 12:21 pm

I saw this little jewel last night, a national geographic 'documentary' about the consequences of an alien attack.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jRi0_1zrMZA

They expected humanity to win and the usual stupidity ensues, but they actually made some valid points why they would invade: for chlorofyl and protein, the only stuff not found elsewhere in the solar system. Subsequently it becomes idiotic to let aliens develop interstellar star travel but lacking means to program bacteriae and the like to produce it.
They also ignored the idea of orbital bombardment, which would end the invasion rather rapidly.
Another glaring point is that changes in gravity would signal that something new is out there. We wouldn't need radiation or visual contact to know that, an invasion force would come in such numbers and masses that they can hardly go undetected, especially if the depicted scenario would apply.
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Graham Kennedy » Thu Jun 02, 2011 1:31 pm

I saw that one. I thought it was kind of weird that the aliens would invade for chlorophyll and protein when they turned out to be machine intelligences. What would a machine intelligence want with either of those two things? They suggested that it might be used as some sort of biofuel, but powering an interstellar spacecraft with biofuel is just nuts. And if they are biological themselves... well their home planet's biosphere should have plenty, surely?

I can see that some of the ideas would be good ones - concentrating on the sort of asymmetric warfare we see on Earth, for example. But honestly, I think it's rather fanciful to think we'd have any chance to even impede a real alien attack. It would be less like low tech guerrillas fighting a high tech army, more like a colony of deer fighting a new housing project.
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Tsukiyumi » Thu Jun 02, 2011 2:29 pm

GrahamKennedy wrote:...more like a colony of deer fighting a new housing project.


*Ahem*

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNGGbozilko

:lol:
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Tyyr » Thu Jun 02, 2011 2:47 pm

Given that most organic molecules are made of some of the most common crap in the universe you'd think that someone who has mastered interstellar flight would be technologically advanced enough to just synthesize any proteins they'd need far cheaper than traveling to another star system to steal them.
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Mikey » Thu Jun 02, 2011 2:53 pm

GrahamKennedy wrote:And if they are biological themselves... well their home planet's biosphere should have plenty, surely?


It's almost impossible for it NOT to. How could a species evolve in a particular ecosystem with a biological requirement for a substance not present in that ecosystem?

Tsukiyumi wrote:
GrahamKennedy wrote:...more like a colony of deer fighting a new housing project.


*Ahem*

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNGGbozilko

:lol:


That's epic. I can almost hear the deer talking to his buddies afterward... "I'm telling you, he was a ten-pointer at the least... I waited, let him think he was stalking ME, and some dude in a truck came up at the last minute and blocked my shit..."

The other great aspect of that video is that it's quite conceivable that an adult buck could have killed that guy. How great is it to have a hunting buddy who lets you get stomped so he could get a Youtube clip, instead of helping? :lol:
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Lighthawk » Thu Jun 02, 2011 3:24 pm

Mikey wrote:The other great aspect of that video is that it's quite conceivable that an adult buck could have killed that guy. How great is it to have a hunting buddy who lets you get stomped so he could get a Youtube clip, instead of helping? :lol:


It's worse than that, the person with the camera was the guy's wife.
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Graham Kennedy » Thu Jun 02, 2011 3:32 pm

I for one welcome our new cervine overlords...
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Re: Insultingly stupid movie physics

Postby Mikey » Thu Jun 02, 2011 4:28 pm

Lighthawk wrote:
Mikey wrote:The other great aspect of that video is that it's quite conceivable that an adult buck could have killed that guy. How great is it to have a hunting buddy who lets you get stomped so he could get a Youtube clip, instead of helping? :lol:


It's worse than that, the person with the camera was the guy's wife.


Ah, then I understand. Now, actually, I'm surprised it wasn't interspersed with her derisive shouts of, "Fight back, you pussy!"
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