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Old June 21 2013, 03:06 PM   #113
blssdwlf
Commodore
 
Re: Let's Discuss the Romulan Bird of Prey!

Timo wrote: View Post
blssdwlf wrote: View Post
Well let's see. In TOS ships at warp have a slower FTL speed near a star.
- From the time Kirk gives Sulu the go ahead to go get them till the point the Enterprise enters the comet's tail is approx 52s.
- The BOP enters the comet's tail ~21s after Kirk gives his order.
- Kirk is fully expecting to see the BOP on the other side of the tail.
- The Enterprise's time through the tail is approx 28s.
- The BOP's expected time through the tail would have been less than 60s.
So, the two ships are explicitly traveling at very low sublight speeds (as the dimensions of a comet are known well enough). Which is impossible if the ships were capable of reasonable FTL speeds, because no skipper would dare the "shallows" of a star system if it imposed such a crippling penalty.
Actually, comets tail range up to 3.5 AU. The length of the comet's tail as seen in the original FX is 8 times the width at the point of entry for the Enterprise and presumably the Romulan ship.

If the ion tail is only 1 AU in length, it would take roughly 62s for a ship to cross the width of the tail at the speed of light. At 1.5 AU in length, 93s at the speed of light. Its quite possible for the Romulan BOP to be at FTL.

Timo wrote: View Post
Drawn into a star system near a comet...
...Kirk should be screaming at the top of his voice "It's a trap!". Since he doesn't, he's either a complete idiot, or the pseudo-physics and pseudo-tactics of the situation don't add up to your model.
Those are two separate issues.

Tactics: Both the Romulan and Kirk considered that comet as a trap for each other for different reasons. One to obscure their doubling back and the other to make them visible to attack.

TOS physics: The Enterprise is considerably faster earlier in the episode as she races across the map to Outpost 4. However she's slower at the comet and since comets form tails when they're pretty close to a star (like within 4 AU) then it is consistent with slower FTL speeds at warp.

Interestingly if you look at the star map, you'll see a single star in that square that would contain the comet.

But with the fight ending at the neutral zone, we don't know if the comet's star is just it's own star system or the main star for Romulus/Romii. Since it is on the Federation side of the zone I would argue that it is it's own star otherwise Romulus/Romii orbits would go into Federation space


Timo wrote: View Post
Which proves it wasn't FTL vs. STL to my satisfaction, but high FTL vs. low FTL. (Bob's clever "The Enterprise entered the map at an acute angle" excuse notwithstanding...)
I don't think it was FTL vs STL and I wasn't arguing for it. FTL vs FTL yes.

Timo wrote: View Post
However, the point is that this only applies to this single scene. As a whole, the episode is a hopeless mess, offering equal evidence for half a dozen scenarios, each sillier than the previous one. Which is why I feel it's best to hand-pick the evidence that points to high FTL vs. low FTL because that's consistent with the rest of Star Trek as a whole, and to invent absurd rationalizations for solid contrary evidence such as the comet debacle.
Well that is because you're trying to rationalize and make it work with in the TNG and later framework. Within TOS it is pretty consistent.

Timo wrote: View Post
It just follows that one of the things that can be safely thrown away is the idea that the Romulans would be limited to impulse speeds. Indeed, it's the safest such ejection, as it contradicts nothing but the educated guess of a fallible character.
And that isn't the argument is it? It's the idea that impulse speeds can include low-FTL speeds in TOS that troubles you.

Timo wrote: View Post
Such dialogue never indicated the journey would involve one speed only. Kirk headed to his next adventure at warp one often enough, but this is no proof that he would have reached the destination after a warp one journey.
The time when Kirk orders Warp 1 upon leaving a star system does he give a destination vs the Sulu and Kirk giving a clear destination at impulse?

Timo wrote: View Post
No, just wholly impractical. Romulans certainly couldn't fight interstellar wars with drives like that. So whether it's sublight travel or low FTL travel, it solves none of our problems, and we could simply leave it at sublight for simplicity and consistency.
Romulans have a long life span whereas Earthlings do not. Interstellar wars with low FTL engines doesn't sound impractical from the Romulans POV. They are disadvantaged against the faster warp driven ships of the Federation though.

Timo wrote: View Post
Highly debatable that it moved "on simple impulse". Wholly incorrect that it went from star to star!
It's not debatable that it moved on "simple impulse".
It's highly debatable how fast "simple impulse" can be.

Timo wrote: View Post
Quite possible. But the length of that run was never established - and the encounter already took place at impulse, without any reference to the Enterprise dropping out of warp, so odds are that both ships were on the doorstep of the Regula system already.
Well since there is no reference to the Enterprise dropping out of warp prior to her "12 hours away at present speed" dialogue it is more likely they were still at warp five.

Coincidentally, warp five is the speed where the Romulans fought the Enterprise in "The Deadly Years" and kept up with her. An impulse-powered Reliant intercepting the Enterprise while she's at Warp 5.

Timo wrote: View Post
And what makes these "non-warp"? At most, they are "not identified as warp", which is very different from being "identified as non-warp".
Because they aren't called as "warp drive" ships and yet went FTL. Pretty simple, huh?

Timo wrote: View Post
Would it ease your sensibilities if you thought of an impulse engine as a primitive and inefficient space warp drive? Or just inefficiently powering an FTL drive like Albertese suggests below?
Neither of the options solves any of the "BoT" problems where the Romulan drive is neither primitive nor inefficient (in a number of scenes) or where the Enterprise drive must be primitive and inefficient as well (in other scenes).
You have yet to provide any evidence to support that. The episode clearly shows that the Romulan drive is slower than the Enterprise.

Timo wrote: View Post
That's pretty reasonable. TOS could've been more specific in identifying FTL drive types whereas TNG everything FTL is lumped into "warp drive" and everything no longer meant to be FTL was called "impulse". IMHO, of course.
But if "everything" such as ion power, hyperdrive and whatnot gets called "warp", then surely your version of TOS impulse would get called "warp" as well, as it meets the very same criteria (i.e. it's FTL by another name).
Since all the dialogue in question takes place in TOS times then why would they use TNG definitions? I was offering a rationalization that in TNG-continuity they simplified their classification. Think of it as Pluto being re-classified as no longer a planet
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