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Old March 27 2012, 12:40 AM   #32
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Re: How big is Starfleet in men and ships?

Ian Keldon wrote: View Post
We know canonically from WHMHGB (TOS) that ships can and have traveled all the way out to the galactic rim ...
WNMHGB never mention the galactic "rim." Kirk said they would be probing outside the galaxy. Our galaxy is like a very thin pancake, by simply traveling up, the Enterprise would reach the upper "edge" of the thin disc of the milky way galaxy after traveling several hundred light years.

Even if we take Picard's "8,000 light year" figure as a solid sphere of 8,000 ly in diameter, the Federation "sphere of influence" would be ...
The Orion arm is some 3.000 plus light years wide. Roughly 6,000 light years separate the Orion arm from the Sagittarius-Carina arm on the inside and the Perseus arm on the outside, the gap between arms isn't quite empty, but contains mostly red dwarf stars. The area above and below the thin disk is also not quite empty of stars.

All thing considered, it's unlikely that the Federation is a sphere in shape. Picard's description of the Federation as being "spread across eight thousand light years" most likely indicates the length of Federation space at it's greatest dimension.

Using the commonly accepted figure of a 20 ly "sector", that would be ...
This 20 light year figure for a sector is new to me, where is it from?

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