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#1
Old 01-23-2017, 03:05 PM
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Voyager's nacelles. Also, landing gear.

When Voyager goes into warp, its nacelles cant upward. TMK, no other Star Trek starship does this.

Aside from 'Ooh, it looks cool!', why do Voyager's nacelles do that? It seems to serve no purpose ('GNDN' ) and introduces structural issues.

As for the landing gear, it seems that would take an enormous amount of space in the hull when they are retracted. The 'saucer section' sticks way out to the front, so it should present a balance problem -- as would the narrow stance of the landing gear, laterally.
#2
Old 01-23-2017, 03:17 PM
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When the show first started, I was told that the nacelles changed position depending on speed, like variable-sweep-winged aircraft today, so that the geometry would always be ideal for the warp factor they were at.

Of course, the actual show had them move into the same position every time they were at warp, no matter how fast or slow the ship was going. Maybe it was controlled by the "Bio-Neural Gel Packs" that they promptly stopped talking about in season 2.

As for the balance over the landing gear, I assume the stuff in the secondary hull (warp core, main computer, deflector dish) is just a hell of a lot heavier than the stuff in the saucer section. Also structural integrity fields, anti-gravity, and all of the usual star trek hand waving.
#3
Old 01-23-2017, 03:19 PM
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I believe that the fan-wank is that the moving nacelles are the answer to the warp-drive pollution featured in one of the last season's TNG episodes.

Last edited by beowulff; 01-23-2017 at 03:20 PM.
#4
Old 01-23-2017, 03:19 PM
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One TNG ep dealt with the idea that warp drive damaged space. (A little environmental allegory.) The variable configuration of Voaygers nacelles was supposed to address that. Don't ask me how.
#5
Old 01-23-2017, 03:33 PM
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Here's what Memory Alpha has to say on the subject:

http://memory-alpha.wikia.com/wiki/V...geometry_pylon

Personally, I've always thought Voyager's landing capability to be a bunch of hooey that demonstrated the correctness of Roddenberry's decision to nix it. "Inertia dampeners on full," indeed!

As an aside, the next time you watch "The Corbomite Maneuver," watch how McCoy's uniform changes when he's on the bridge and Balok appears on the screen.
#6
Old 01-23-2017, 03:53 PM
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Originally Posted by terentii View Post
As an aside, the next time you watch "The Corbomite Maneuver," watch how McCoy's uniform changes when he's on the bridge and Balok appears on the screen.
I can see why someone might need to change their pants, but their shirt?
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#7
Old 01-23-2017, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve MB View Post
I can see why someone might need to change their pants, but their shirt?
Note too that when they beam over to the Fesarius, the first thing Kirk does upon seeing Balok is draw his phaser....
#8
Old 01-23-2017, 04:19 PM
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Originally Posted by terentii View Post
"Inertia dampeners on full," indeed!
<crew dies>

Postmortem: "Admiral, it appears the Inertial Dampeners stopped even the flow of blood and movement of proteins in their bodies."

#9
Old 01-23-2017, 04:27 PM
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(Blush...) Never watched the show. Is there a YouTube clip of the nacelles tilting?
#10
Old 01-23-2017, 04:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Trinopus View Post
(Blush...) Never watched the show. Is there a YouTube clip of the nacelles tilting?
Opening titles:

https://youtube.com/watch?v=Z_OylbFmMJU
#11
Old 01-23-2017, 10:17 PM
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Originally Posted by beowulff View Post
I believe that the fan-wank is that the moving nacelles are the answer to the warp-drive pollution featured in one of the last season's TNG episodes.
Which still doesn't make the fact that they are only ever in the "up" position while at warp make sense. Unless the low position is "idling".
#12
Old 01-24-2017, 08:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
As for the landing gear, it seems that would take an enormous amount of space in the hull when they are retracted. The 'saucer section' sticks way out to the front, so it should present a balance problem -- as would the narrow stance of the landing gear, laterally.
Iím not sure why Voyager would have to waste space on all that stuff. Why not just replicate them into place when needed, and then dematerialize them when no longer needed? Or if thatís too energy intensive, apparently transporters arenít intensive. Keep them in shipís stores, and transport them into place when needed. It seems silly to add a heavy mechanical system to a starship.
#13
Old 01-24-2017, 01:48 PM
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fanwank: perhaps Voyager is mostly travelling at high-enough speeds to warrant the tilted nacelles? They're trying to complete a very long trip as quickly as possible after all...

Speaking of, this is related to one of my nitpicks as well... Why would they ever go slower than warp 7? Seems like it's just wasting time they don't have! One can probably site references to the Starfleet engines needing more maintenance/repair when travelling at 'high warp' for long periods of time.. but what exactly constitutes 'high warp' is left a little vague as well. Still, with the different warp levels, an increase of 1 (say, warp 6 to warp 7) is supposed to be an order of magnitude increase, i wonder why they would ever limp along at warp 5...
#14
Old 01-24-2017, 02:06 PM
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Originally Posted by akrako1 View Post
fanwank: perhaps Voyager is mostly travelling at high-enough speeds to warrant the tilted nacelles? They're trying to complete a very long trip as quickly as possible after all....
When it was launched, no one knew it would end up in the Delta Quadrant.

I should think they're better off traveling at moderate warp speed to ensure engine life, regardless of the distance involved.
#15
Old 01-24-2017, 02:26 PM
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Voyager was designed for policing the 'badlands' which may have very different requirements than getting the hell home across the galaxy. Stealth may be part of it, even at the expense of inefficiencies. It may also allow something like degaussing them, which would explain why Captain Janeway never ordered those things welded in place.
#16
Old 01-24-2017, 03:39 PM
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Originally Posted by akrako1 View Post
... i wonder why they would ever limp along at warp 5...
Ask why Kirk would ever run at Warp 1! Why even bother.

In deep space travel, your maximum speed should be your only speed. Why dally?
#17
Old 01-24-2017, 03:50 PM
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Presumably, fuel consumption isn't linear. You can't just stop by the Antares Shell station to top off if you've spent too much time zipping around at Warp 7...

Last edited by beowulff; 01-24-2017 at 03:51 PM.
#18
Old 01-24-2017, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Just Asking Questions View Post
In deep space travel, your maximum speed should be your only speed. Why dally?
Quote:
Originally Posted by terentii
I should think they're better off traveling at moderate warp speed to ensure engine life, regardless of the distance involved.
This. They are not travelling at the speed that gets them to the next star system fastest. They are travelling at the speed that gets them back to federation space fastest. Especially knowing they are not guaranteed of access to any kind of maintenance facilities they are almost certainly balancing raw speed against wear and tear on the engines.
#19
Old 01-24-2017, 04:29 PM
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Originally Posted by leahcim View Post
This. They are not travelling at the speed that gets them to the next star system fastest. They are travelling at the speed that gets them back to federation space fastest. Especially knowing they are not guaranteed of access to any kind of maintenance facilities they are almost certainly balancing raw speed against wear and tear on the engines.
But commercial jetliners don't decide that today they are only going to fly at 200 mph, then tomorrow 600, then 350. They go as fast as they can, and the plane is designed to take it. They can fly all day until their fuel runs out at the designed speed.

The speeds in ST are slow, and space is YUUGE! Using the original cubed power rule, warp 4 is 64 C and warp 6 is 216 C. The difference in travel time for a 20 light year trip is 114 days at warp 4 vs 33 days at warp 6*. Do you really want to dawdle along like a rowboat in the Atlantic for an additional 11 and a half weeks if you don't have to? If the ship can't run at warp 6 indefinitely, then send it back to the drawing board, because it's useless for its intended purpose.


*yes, those values were not only totally unrealistic, but contradicted by actual dialog. And at warp 1 that 20 lt year trip takes...20 years. At warp 6, the edge of the galaxy is a mere 39 YEARS away.

Last edited by Just Asking Questions; 01-24-2017 at 04:34 PM.
#20
Old 01-24-2017, 06:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Balthisar View Post
Iím not sure why Voyager would have to waste space on all that stuff. Why not just replicate them into place when needed, and then dematerialize them when no longer needed? Or if thatís too energy intensive, apparently transporters arenít intensive. Keep them in shipís stores, and transport them into place when needed. It seems silly to add a heavy mechanical system to a starship.
Are you sure they can? They've never shown a very big replicator at all. Some people assume the Federation can replicate starships, yet that doesn't happen either. And they don't transport anything much bigger than a human being.
#21
Old 01-24-2017, 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Just Asking Questions View Post
But commercial jetliners don't decide that today they are only going to fly at 200 mph, then tomorrow 600, then 350. They go as fast as they can, and the plane is designed to take it. They can fly all day until their fuel runs out at the designed speed.
No plane flies "as fast as it can." It has a normal cruising speed that's considerably below its maximum theoretical speed. Cruising speed gives maximum performance with optimum fuel consumption. Exceeding cruising speed, even in emergencies that require you to go faster, can be dangerous.

You might just as well regularly drive your car at 120 mph, rather than around 60.

Last edited by terentii; 01-24-2017 at 07:54 PM.
#22
Old 01-24-2017, 09:22 PM
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Originally Posted by terentii View Post
No plane flies "as fast as it can." It has a normal cruising speed that's considerably below its maximum theoretical speed. Cruising speed gives maximum performance with optimum fuel consumption. Exceeding cruising speed, even in emergencies that require you to go faster, can be dangerous.

You might just as well regularly drive your car at 120 mph, rather than around 60.
I guess I need to be more specific.

Jet airliners go as fast as they can. As fast as they can is typical designed cruising speed, appx Mach .84 for a 747 (other models vary). Never exceed veolcity is a bit higher, about Mach .89. Of course this is not a actual speed limit - the plane can go faster, but it is dangerous. They can lose control. Vne is a guide, not a tchnological fact.

The point is, they always go "as fast as they can", meaning at max crusing speed (weather and other factors permitting). They don't fly along at 200 knots today. What would be the point? The airplane is no where near as efficient at slower speeds. Plus, schedules are designed to take best advantage of the machinery. Having a plane fly slow means the airline is losing money.

Likewise, if you designed a starship that can go warp 6 confortably, and warp 8 "in emergencies", the the ship should always go between stars at warp 6. Maybe 5.8. Not 4, 3, 2 and most definietly not 1! If the ship is capable of doing it, it should. Why would anyone want to extend their time between stars?
#23
Old 01-24-2017, 10:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Just Asking Questions View Post
Likewise, if you designed a starship that can go warp 6 confortably, and warp 8 "in emergencies", the the ship should always go between stars at warp 6. Maybe 5.8. Not 4, 3, 2 and most definietly not 1! If the ship is capable of doing it, it should. Why would anyone want to extend their time between stars?
I would imagine it depends primarily on the parameters of the mission and the space you're traveling through. Do present-day naval vessels always sail at a predetermined fixed speed?
#24
Old 01-24-2017, 10:55 PM
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Originally Posted by smiling bandit View Post
Are you sure they can? They've never shown a very big replicator at all. Some people assume the Federation can replicate starships, yet that doesn't happen either. And they don't transport anything much bigger than a human being.
I think a replicator has to be bigger than the object it's replicating. Industrial replicators have been mentioned; presumably they're much bigger than consumer ones, but they're still something that fits inside a starship's cargo hold, not something that a starship fits inside.
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#25
Old 01-25-2017, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by alphaboi867 View Post
I think a replicator has to be bigger than the object it's replicating. Industrial replicators have been mentioned; presumably they're much bigger than consumer ones, but they're still something that fits inside a starship's cargo hold, not something that a starship fits inside.
You don't have to replicate the entire object though. They could replicate in 3D, you know, like a 3D printer prints.
#26
Old 01-25-2017, 09:08 AM
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Originally Posted by terentii View Post
As an aside, the next time you watch "The Corbomite Maneuver," watch how McCoy's uniform changes when he's on the bridge and Balok appears on the screen.
DeForest Kelley was in the Richard Diamond Private Detective episode I watched last night. His Wife cheated him in a life insurance scam.
#27
Old 01-25-2017, 09:41 AM
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Originally Posted by terentii View Post
I would imagine it depends primarily on the parameters of the mission and the space you're traveling through. Do present-day naval vessels always sail at a predetermined fixed speed?
In my head canon "warp factors" are more like "gears" than speeds. It is true that higher numbers generally correlate with faster speeds, and in "ordinary conditions" you can even come up with which speed generally correlates with which gear for a given vehicle, but that doesn't mean that you'll always be going to same speed in the same gear, or that it is smart to always be in the same gear.

In the Star Trek universe, space-time is full of pot holes and gravelly patches that require different "driving styles".
#28
Old 01-25-2017, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Just Asking Questions View Post
...
Likewise, if you designed a starship that can go warp 6 confortably, and warp 8 "in emergencies", the the ship should always go between stars at warp 6. Maybe 5.8. Not 4, 3, 2 and most definietly not 1! If the ship is capable of doing it, it should. Why would anyone want to extend their time between stars?
Maintenance cycles where they could still go but slower? Easier on the crystals at lower warp speed?
#29
Old 01-25-2017, 11:03 AM
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Originally Posted by terentii View Post
I would imagine it depends primarily on the parameters of the mission and the space you're traveling through. Do present-day naval vessels always sail at a predetermined fixed speed?
I think our analogy begins to break down at this point. We just don't know enough about how warp drive works.

With surface ships at sea, fuel consumption can go up rapidly for small increases in speed. Drag really goes up the faster you go. The advantage of speed can be offset by the need to take on fuel sooner. Plus weather is much more of a factor. Star Trek has had "ion storms" and other such parallels to weather, but in an average episode, Kirk never asked for the space weather report before deciding on any speed.

Airplanes are designed to be optimized for the speed and altitudes they spend most of their time in. It's the reverse of ships - flying slower increases fuel consumption. Jet engines have a very small rpm range where they like to be, and outside of that window specific fuel consumption goes up rapidly. (that was always the problem with turbine powered trucks or cars - airplanes can run at a set speed indefinitely, but cars speed up and slow down constantly.)

Submarines might be the closest analogy. The medium they go through is fairly uniform, and they don't need refueling. A sub could pick a speed that works for them (whatever it is) and probably go all the way around the world at that speed. Since the navy refused to select me for the sub program, I don't know the answer, though.

The "gears" analogy given above is a good compromise fanwank. Warp 6 isn't "XX times the speed of light" but "XX Cochranes of space-bending force". In flat space between stars maybe it is 300 C, but near a large gravitation source is could be 600 C, or 200C (depending on how it works). So maybe where you are going affects the actual speed. That could be how it takes 300 years to go 2.5 Mly (3600C) in By Any other Name, but takes only 11.337 hours to go 1000 ly (excuse me, 990.7 ly) (765,000 (!) C) in That Which Survives.

FWIW, other franchises seem to have a set fixed FTL speed. Star Wars hyperdrive seems to be one speed (or at least they never talk about it), same as Niven's Known Space, which has only 2 speeds and the fast one is very expensive.

Last edited by Just Asking Questions; 01-25-2017 at 11:06 AM.
#30
Old 01-25-2017, 11:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Just Asking Questions View Post
...but in an average episode, Kirk never asked for the space weather report before deciding on any speed.
On the other hand, they are routinely asked to "plot/chart a course" and displayed maps of routes often show circuitous paths being taken. This implies that "space navigation" is often more complicated than "point at the thing you want to go to and hit the throttle" in some unspecified way.
#31
Old 01-25-2017, 12:20 PM
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At sub-light,the impulse engine (thermonuclear thruster) must be co-linear (in a straight line behind) the ship's center of gravity.

To make a warp field propulsive, the field must be a-symmetric (this is canon Treknology).

Since the dual impulse engines are mounted on the warp nacelles, they are flat at sublight and vectored up during warp.
#32
Old 01-25-2017, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by leahcim View Post
On the other hand, they are routinely asked to "plot/chart a course" and displayed maps of routes often show circuitous paths being taken. This implies that "space navigation" is often more complicated than "point at the thing you want to go to and hit the throttle" in some unspecified way.
This. And various attempts to adequately describe the "warp factor" effect on speed are doomed to failure because the writers used whatever they wanted to at any given point in time to accomplish the plot (much as communications were at the speed of plot). Since you cannot actually explain how warp factors work (and remain completely consistent with the dialogue of the various shows), there's little point in trying to have a serious discussion about them.

I have always assumed that: 1) higher warp speeds place stress on the warp engines. This is supported by numerous examples throughout the various series. 2) higher warp speeds probably chew up the required "fuel" at a less efficient rate. There is, to my knowledge, no evidence one way or the other here. 3) higher warp speeds are dangerous to the ship, depending on where in the galaxy the ship is traveling. This is easy to understand in the sense that, while the Star Trek episodes and films aren't always consistent on what warp travel is like, it IS pretty clear that it does NOT take you out of "normal" space completely (unlike, for example, David Weber's Honorverse).

I think it would have been nice if, back in 1966, Gene and everyone had sat down before they had gone too far and actually put down in writing the parameters of many of these things, and then required the episode writers to adhere to them, for the sake of consistency. But, oh well.
#33
Old 01-25-2017, 12:37 PM
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Originally Posted by DSYoungEsq View Post
I think it would have been nice if, back in 1966, Gene and everyone had sat down before they had gone too far and actually put down in writing the parameters of many of these things, and then required the episode writers to adhere to them, for the sake of consistency. But, oh well.
I laugh, because he did. The first part. It was the second that they had trouble with.

Oh and his speed x c=warp factor cubed was way too slow. So I guess he failed the first part, too.
#34
Old 01-25-2017, 12:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Enola Straight View Post
Since the dual impulse engines are mounted on the warp nacelles, they are flat at sublight and vectored up during warp.
Cite? It's my understanding they're at the rear of the saucer section.

I find it interesting that in "The Corbomite Maneuver," Kirk orders Sulu to add impulse power to their warp speed when they're fighting Balok's tractor beam. How the hell would impulse engines work inside a warp field?!?
#35
Old 01-25-2017, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by DSYoungEsq View Post
[H]igher warp speeds are dangerous to the ship, depending on where in the galaxy the ship is traveling. This is easy to understand in the sense that, while the Star Trek episodes and films aren't always consistent on what warp travel is like, it IS pretty clear that it does NOT take you out of "normal" space completely (unlike, for example, David Weber's Honorverse).
The clearest evidence of this is "Tomorrow Is Yesterday," where the gravitational field of a black dwarf throws the Enterprise back in time.

Last edited by terentii; 01-25-2017 at 01:04 PM.
#36
Old 01-25-2017, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by terentii View Post
Cite? It's my understanding they're at the rear of the saucer section.
According to this, for the Intrepid class (of which Voyager is one) [b]Enola Straight[b]'s placement is correct.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Memory-Alpha
The main impulse engines on an Intrepid-class starship were located on the aft end of the pylons leading to the warp nacelles. Intrepid-class starships were also equipped with auxiliary impulse reactors. (VOY: "Phage")
They were on the rear of the saucer section for the Galaxy class, with a separate one on the spine of the secondary hull.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Enola Straight
To make a warp field propulsive, the field must be a-symmetric (this is canon Treknology).

Since the dual impulse engines are mounted on the warp nacelles, they are flat at sublight and vectored up during warp.
If true, that only brings of the question of why the impulse engines are mounted on the pylons at all? If the impulse engines are only used on one position, and the warp drive is only used in the other position, why not just have separate mountings that fix each in their appropriate position?
#37
Old 01-25-2017, 01:37 PM
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#38
Old 01-25-2017, 01:37 PM
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Originally Posted by leahcim View Post
According to this, for the Intrepid class (of which Voyager is one) [b]Enola Straight[b]'s placement is correct.
Aha. I thought we were still talking about Constitution-class vessels.
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