So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

The Next Generation

Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby Captain Seafort » Sun Feb 26, 2012 11:40 am

Mikey wrote:They said "plasma" plenty of times. Ergo, it was either the liquid component of blood or ionized gas. I could be wrong, but I suspect that the show referenced the latter.


They did - specifically so in TUC, when Spock brought up Chang's ship's exhaust.
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby Mikey » Sun Feb 26, 2012 1:26 pm

I was referring to the internal power transfer medium... a ship could conceivably have plasma in it's exhaust without using for an internal medium.
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby alexmann » Sun Feb 26, 2012 3:16 pm

That it could.
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby Mark » Mon Feb 27, 2012 5:51 am

To completely change the subject, has anyone else wondered why they never put a warp drive on the saucer section of the E-D? Separating the saucer before a battle, and losing the stardrive would leave the saucer at the mercy of the attacking ship, which defeats the whole point of separating the saucer in the first place, which was to keep the civilians safe. They can build warp drives small enough for a shuttle craft, so why would they leave the saucer with such a glaring weakness do you think?
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby Sonic Glitch » Mon Feb 27, 2012 5:54 am

Mark wrote:To completely change the subject, has anyone else wondered why they never put a warp drive on the saucer section of the E-D? Separating the saucer before a battle, and losing the stardrive would leave the saucer at the mercy of the attacking ship, which defeats the whole point of separating the saucer in the first place, which was to keep the civilians safe. They can build warp drives small enough for a shuttle craft, so why would they leave the saucer with such a glaring weakness do you think?

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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby McAvoy » Mon Feb 27, 2012 6:07 am

Mark wrote:To completely change the subject, has anyone else wondered why they never put a warp drive on the saucer section of the E-D? Separating the saucer before a battle, and losing the stardrive would leave the saucer at the mercy of the attacking ship, which defeats the whole point of separating the saucer in the first place, which was to keep the civilians safe. They can build warp drives small enough for a shuttle craft, so why would they leave the saucer with such a glaring weakness do you think?


Lack of space due to needing an apartment sized quarters for everyone?

I have been toying with the idea of putting retractable nacelles on the sides of the saucer.

The saucer doesn't need to go Warp 9.6 but just fast enough to reach a starbase within a decent amount of time.
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby Mark » Mon Feb 27, 2012 6:10 am

Even one retractable nacelle on the belly behind the Captain's yacht. If the saucer could make warp 6 as emergency speed and cruse at warp 4, at least they could MAYBE escape.
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby McAvoy » Mon Feb 27, 2012 6:13 am

Mark wrote:Even one retractable nacelle on the belly behind the Captain's yacht. If the saucer could make warp 6 as emergency speed and cruse at warp 4, at least they could MAYBE escape.


Well saucer is large enough to support a nacelle or two. Hell it doesn't even need to be as big as the main ones.
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby Mikey » Mon Feb 27, 2012 1:02 pm

The question isn't nacelles, it's reactor. The GCS warp core runs, IIRC, straight down the connecting neck nearly to the bottom of the engineering hull. Where do you have that space available in the saucer?
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby Sonic Glitch » Mon Feb 27, 2012 3:17 pm

Mikey wrote:The question isn't nacelles, it's reactor. The GCS warp core runs, IIRC, straight down the connecting neck nearly to the bottom of the engineering hull. Where do you have that space available in the saucer?

Actually, according to the MSD it seems the warp core is only about 8-10 decks high in the engineering hull (see my bad MS Paint skills). Conceivably a smaller, limited capacity core could be fit in the saucer.

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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby Captain Seafort » Mon Feb 27, 2012 5:39 pm

Mikey wrote:The question isn't nacelles, it's reactor.


I agree. Not because of a lack of space, as you could probably shoehorn one in (although what you'd have to take out to make this possible would have to be considered). The problem is that this is a GCS Batch 1 reactor you're talking about. The version that explodes if you so much as look at it sideways. Do you really want to lug more of them around than you have to, especially when one of them is in your supposed lifeboat?
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby mwhittington » Mon Feb 27, 2012 6:05 pm

The Defiant had almost the power output of a GCS with a much smaller warp core. Maybe something like that could be retrofitted in without sacrificing much space.
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby LaughingCheese » Mon Feb 27, 2012 6:59 pm

mwhittington wrote:The Defiant had almost the power output of a GCS with a much smaller warp core. Maybe something like that could be retrofitted in without sacrificing much space.


It was also quite a bit smaller...



Anyway, I always thought it was because the saucer was designed to hold most of the crew.


The stardrive section is the industrial section where all the dangerous equipment is kept.


That's why the ship can separate in the first place. If they had a warp core in the saucer module it would defeat the point of it being a lifeboat.


It may be kind of dumb and it is because yeah the saucer would be very vulnerable to once separated, but I think that's what was going through the writers heads.
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby Mikey » Mon Feb 27, 2012 7:39 pm

See Seafort's post, with emphasis on the word "shoehorn." The issue isn't the size of the core, it's the size of all the ancillary equipment that is integral to the M/AM reactor. Yes, the core is only as big as indicated on the MSD Sonic provided; but the majority of the whole engineering hull is control and diagnostic equipment, reactant storage (fairly important and rather large,) etc., etc. So...

#1 - Do you really want to keep huge tanks of the most volatile reactants known to man aboard the "safe" part of the ship, the part that's supposed to be an escape from danger?
#2 - Even with a reduced-capacity core, all that other stuff needs to go with it. I think a lifeboat limited to impulse is a better option than a warp-capable lifeboat that can only take one-third of the complement.
#3 - Even only discussing normal operations, what do you have to sacrifice to get that warp core et. al. into the saucer? Yes, the arboretum, patisserie, coffeehouse, and whatever other "space-hotel" crap can conceivably be dispensed with (but see below;*) but if it comes to taking out stellar cartography or research labs or somesuch, you've succeeded in negligibly improving an emergency function at the cost of sacrificing part of the ship's primary function.

* - Even though we all laugh at the type of amenities that a GCS apparently has, they were put there for a reason. We are talking about people - civvies, not just Academy-trained crew - who are going to be aboard for long stretches at a time. The people who designed the GCS were obviously not willing to dispense with those things, presumably for reasons that behavioral and competency research had shown them; therefore, binning those amenities isn't an option, even if you feel like sticking a powder keg spare core in the saucer.
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Re: So...the Enterprise runs on fire?

Postby McAvoy » Tue Feb 28, 2012 2:53 am

It doesn't have to be a full sized warp core. It could be a smallish one, perhaps in a pod directly connected to the warp core should it fail, it can be jettisoned entirely as a unit or completely removed. Range also doesn't have to be as large as the stardrive section since if the saucer is viewed as a giant lifeboat, it should have enough fuel for let's say 100 lightyears at a specified warp speed.
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