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-   -   Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries (http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=65189)

Dukhat August 31 2008 02:47 PM

Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
Hello,

I'm writing up an essay about the conjectural Starfleet vessel classes in the Encyclopedia, and I'm hoping someone can help me with a tidbit of info about the above ship, which is referred to in the TNG second season episode "The Icarus Factor."

Now, having see the original first-run episode when I was 16 (I'm 35 now), I could have sworn up and down that either Picard or Kyle Riker referred to the Aries as "a small scout ship" or something similar. However, upon watching the DVD of the ep a few days ago, it turns out that nothing of the sort was said. As a matter of fact, the only reference to a description of the ship was given by Picard: "...a relatively insignificant ship..." (compared to the Enterprise).

So was I just hallucinating nineteen years ago, or were there any other references to the Aries being a small scout ship somewhere else?

Cronos6939 August 31 2008 04:42 PM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
Check out the Memory Alpha page on the Aries. http://memory-alpha.org/en/wiki/USS_Aries It has everything that has been established about the ship.

JNG August 31 2008 05:07 PM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
Just for fun, here's a very solid conjectural design for it: http://www.trekships.org/renaissance.htm

James Wright August 31 2008 05:25 PM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
The ship seen at trekships.org looks like the Intrepid class in hull configuration, that's just my opinion!
Thanks.

JDW

Dukhat August 31 2008 07:22 PM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
I'm glad you posted that design, because I want to explain how wrong it is :-)

Seriously, I completely respect the guys at ASDB for their work on these conjectural classes, but my essay contains a conjectural timeline of starship design construction, and I can tell you that the Rennaissance class would not look like that.

First, that particular design came about because one of the early TNG comic books featured the Aries. In it, the ship was very small (perhaps that was where I got the idea it was a scoutship from?), and although it was a saucer/engineering hull/nacelles on each side of the engineering hull as depicted in this design, the comic book art was very crude and the ship would look different from one panel to the next. Someone got the idea that the Ambassador class hull was what it was supposed to look like, but I can vehemently state that that was not so (I saw the comic myself). However, that's what stuck, and that's what the ASDB guys used as their template. And really, all it is is an Ambassador class ship with its nacelles on the side instead of on upward-curving pylons.

Huntingdon August 31 2008 07:37 PM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
They got the Ambassador class idea from the TNG Tec Manual I think. It states that the Galaxy type escape pods were incorporated in to the last of the Renaissance class, which puts it in the pre-Galaxy era aka Amabassador style. We've not really seen any Ambassador era ships so the Renaissance makes sense if they were being built through that time.

If your essay conjectures a different timeline - have you made allowance for the Renaissance class being built right up to the Galaxy era?

Timo August 31 2008 07:39 PM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
Personally, I'm fond of the idea that the Aries comes from the same class as the Centaur commanded by Captain Reynolds in DS9. The registries for those two vessels are very similar. Both appear to be small and "insignificant" vessels - the Aries as per Picard's words, the Centaur because she can barely offer resistance to a single Jem'Hadar battlebug.

Also, the configuration that uses identifiable Excelsior-style components but combines them with Miranda elements (mainly the bridge and torp pod) that alter the scale to something much smaller than Excelsior looks very attractive for an "insignificant" ship in that registry range.

Timo Saloniemi

Dukhat August 31 2008 08:24 PM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
Quote:

Huntingdon wrote: (Post 2013248)
They got the Ambassador class idea from the TNG Tec Manual I think. It states that the Galaxy type escape pods were incorporated in to the last of the Renaissance class, which puts it in the pre-Galaxy era aka Amabassador style. We've not really seen any Ambassador era ships so the Renaissance makes sense if they were being built through that time.

If your essay conjectures a different timeline - have you made allowance for the Renaissance class being built right up to the Galaxy era?

Here's some relevant points that my timeline makes (remember, this is conjectural based on registry numbers):

1. Because the Antares, Apollo, Hokule'a, and Wambundu classes are all in production around the same time as the Ambassador class (2313-2317 or thereabouts), I speculated that they are all variants of the Ambassador (the timeline goes into greater detail about this).

2. Between 2320 and 2329, we see a huge upsurge in Excelsior and Miranda class ships (and their variants, the DS9 kitbashes). This is also the time when the Istanbul, Merced, and Surak classes are in production (Timo, I originally felt the Centaur was a Renaissance class too, but now I feel it would rather fit better as a Merced or Surak class). So the Ambassador class design lineage is effectively stopped in favor of designs incorporating the Excelsior parts. Why? Who knows? But that's what the registries say.

3. The big turning point in the timeline is 2329, when duotronics are replaced by isolinear chips in starship computer systems. I logically speculate that this is when the older Excelsior designs are stopped in favor of newer designs incorporating the newer technology.

4. Because Renaissance class production continued for the next eight years after 2329 (The Hokkaido was built in 2337), I speculated that the Renaissance class was in fact one of the first new vessel designs to incorporate the iso-chip technology, and therefore be a newer style of vessel than the older Excelsior and Ambassador classes. I also speculated that the term "Rennaissance" was used just for this new technological advancement.


Personally, I think the Renaissance class is the true "intermediary" step between the Excelsior class and the Galaxy class, registry- and timeline-wise. But by the time of the Enterprise-D, the class hadn't been in production for decades, and was considered (by Picard anyway) to be insignificant.:)

Timo September 1 2008 10:29 AM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
To be sure, the Drake previously offered to Riker was considered a "light cruiser", allowing us to say that the Aries wasn't bigger than that. Perhaps Starfleet would even decide to offer Riker a lesser ship the second time around, to show him that refusal wasn't without consequences?

Of course, the third ship Riker is offered, the Melbourne, is either an Excelsior or a Nebula - so either "huge" or "kazoink-kababoom-mindbogging-gigantic".

Timo Saloniemi

Tigger September 1 2008 06:58 PM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
Quote:

Timo wrote: (Post 2015507)
To be sure, the Drake previously offered to Riker was considered a "light cruiser", allowing us to say that the Aries wasn't bigger than that.

Then again, I have read comments by TNG production staff who have designated the Nebula class as a light cruiser, so evidently a Federation light cruiser can still be pretty big. ;)

Dukhat September 3 2008 02:53 AM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
I don't think it's the size of the ship that matters, but rather its mission profile. You could be the captain of a huge massive freighter, but all you'd be doing is hauling freight. The Drake, light cruiser or not, was an old ship only capable of warp two, which would make its missions considerably limited. But the Aries seemed to be capable of deep-space exploration missions, so I don't think it was a "step down" for Riker. And the Melbourne would certainly have been a feather in his cap.

Dukhat September 16 2008 07:11 PM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
I found a page with a picture scanned from the comic. The ship is actually the Hornet, not the Aries, but it's still supposed to be the Renaissance Class:

http://startrek.wikia.com/wiki/Renaissance_class

As you can see, the art is incredibly crude. How someone went from that to this is quite a stretch:

http://www.trekships.org/renaissance.htm

But even so, this depiction really doesn't suit what we know of the class, mainly, that she is a deep-space explorer. Usually, ships having that type of mission profile tend to be quite large (The Excelsior, the Enterprise-D, etc.), so that the ship would be well-stocked with equipment, supplies, etc., for such a long and far journey.

Timo September 17 2008 07:38 AM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
We could argue that the Voyager was perfectly capable of deep space missions, too, though. It would just be a matter of endurance: some exploration vessels would be geared towards longer missions (and perhaps deeper space) than others.

Certainly this comics/ASDB take on the Renaissance class would follow the trend of the intrepid deep space explorers being of the "Enterprise configuration", with two hulls and two out- and perhaps uprigged nacelles. Of course, we have nothing to support the idea that this really is a trend; for all we know, ships of Miranda or Nebula configuration are just as capable and optimal for deep space exploration, and we merely fail to hear of significant explorer captains who would have used those vessels.

One point of interest here: "Icarus Factor" never quite confirms that Riker would get a fourth pip when promoted to the command of the Aries. If he is to command that vessel at Commander rank, then the Aries might be relatively small, smaller perhaps than Rice's light cruiser Drake which gave her young commander (or required of him) the fourth pip.

Sure, the word "promotion" is bandied about - but it need not imply increase in rank, as O'Brien was also promoted at transfer from E-D to DS9 (they use that word in "A Man Alone") yet did not change his collar pips. And sure, Riker is supposed to be called Captain when in command of the Aries - but again, that tells us nothing, as he'd be called that even if his rank were Lieutenant.

Timo Saloniemi

Reverend September 17 2008 01:29 PM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
I'm with Timo regarding the Centaur representing the design of the Renaissance. It's one of the ASDB designs I was least happy with, but it was set in stone before I joined so not I could do about it.

I would of course dispute the idea that the Antares and Hokule'a are Ambassador derived, just because the few known examples have registries that overlap. But then you all know my take on those designs anyway. Though of course I would agree to the Apollo being an Ambassador stablemate.;)

Timo September 17 2008 01:36 PM

Re: Renaissance class U.S.S. Aries
 
I love your design on the Antares to bits - and I wonder if the Centaur isn't filling a somewhat similar niche for the "Excelsior generation" of starships...

Timo Saloniemi


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