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Old August 25 2013, 08:49 PM   #123
Re: Scaling the Excelsior Filming Model

Crazy Eddie wrote: View Post

It's more likely that "transwarp" is a lot more esoteric than any of us give it credit for: could be that Excelsior isn't that much faster than Enterprise after all, but the transwarp drive allows it to instantly jump to an arbitrary warp factor (or an arbitrary velocity between warp factors) without having to build up acceleration over time.
This is an interesting idea, however some of the dialogue from Styles is difficult to reconcile with this theory.

First, Styles never specifies any particular warp factor / transwarp factor or speed.

Prepare for warp speed, standby transwarp drive (...) Execute
Since he doesn't specify the speed, and it is understood by the crew that they are now in pursuit of a fleeing ship, this order was essentially "Go fast, and step on the gas until we catch up"

During the failed attempt to reach transwarp, the computer announces: "Transwarp Drive maximum velocity in five, four, three, two, one." The fact that such a notification would be given indicates that speeds, or at least certain speeds, will have SOME interval of acceleration and will not be achieved instantly.

If he tries to get away with warp drive, he's really in for a shock.
At this point, Enterprise had the lead. Excelsior is likely had not yet cleared spacedoors, and Enterprise punches up to full impulse. Even with instantaneous acceleration, he would not know for sure how much time would elapse between Enterprise jumping to warp and the Excelsior achieving Transwarp. Nor could he know for certain that Scotty didn't pull some miracle to get the Enterprise to here maximum warp faster. In order to catch up with the Enterprise with instant acceleration alone, Excelsior would have to intercept before Enterprise reached her maximum warp. Styles did not seem overly concerned about timing. He WAITED for Enterprise to go to warp before he even put the Transwarp drive on standby. No matter what Kirk did, however fast the Enterprise got to her top speed, Styles *knew* that Excelsior WAS going to overtake her.

This to me tells me above all, Transwarp Drive lets you go faster than conventional warp drive. The continuous variable transmission idea are nice additions, but I the key point driven here is that, as far as any of the characters believed (including Scotty) is that Excelsior can go faster than Enterprise. Period.
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