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Old January 25 2009, 07:08 PM   #1
CuttingEdge100
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If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

If you could re-imagine the Phoenix, how would you do it?

Personally, I've thought about the Phoenix design from Star Trek First Contact and it doesn't really make a lot of sense.

For one it would seem a lot of early warp designs (XCV-330A, a number of Vulcan ships) had ring-shaped warp-engines. This actually makes a lot more sense as it's easier to project a bubble that surrounds the whole ship with a ring than with two nacelles.

Also, lauching it into space with a Titan rocket doesn't strike me as all that practical. For one the Titan isn't all that big a rocket, and second of all, it's not all that clear how the Phoenix managed to get it's crew back down to Earth.


I was thinking that I would have designed it with ring-shaped warp-engines. If launched into space with rockets, I'd be thinking of using a bunch of rockets (Look at the cover of "STAR TREK: The Eugenic Wars - The Rise And Fall Of Khan Noonien Singh Volume 2" by Greg Cox).

As for getting it back to earth, I was thinking some either the front of the ship able to seperate much like an old 1960's space-capsule, or the crew would dock with some kind of spaceplane like vehicle they would transfer to that and then land.


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Old January 25 2009, 10:13 PM   #2
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

Given the nature of the time in which the Phoenix launched, docking with a space-plane or space station wouldn't be an option.

I sort of agree on the ring shaped warpdrive, it would make sense if some of the ship's body would be a warpdrive ring. As for the rocket itself, I think that it being a Titan can be taken with a grain of salt. It would be indeed more logical if it is a bigger rocket. If a small lunar lander needs a big ole rocket, a warpship, with all it's crude warpcoils and sensors, would need a much bigger rocket to take it into orbit.
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Old January 25 2009, 11:02 PM   #3
rtc61
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

Gosh, I can just imagine what the canonmeisters would have said in theaters if Phoenix had used ring nacelles....

I think the idea was, 1) Cochran had limited resources available post-war, so he used what was at hand -- in this case, an old Titan missile in an abandoned missile silo, the rest of his investment being in the new warp technology; 2) the filmmakers knew that Phoenix had to echo, at least a little bit, the design of the Enterprise, in order to resonate with fans -- in this case, the twin nacelles -- plus harken a bit to the glory days of the U.S. space program. I agree that, unless we assume the Titan was 'souped up,' it's not nearly strong enough to boost Phoenix to as high an orbit as we see achieved in the film.
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Old January 25 2009, 11:08 PM   #4
Herkimer Jitty
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

The Phoenix did have a crew return system. The crew capsule was designed to seperate from the main body of the craft and return to Earth and splashdown. This can be seen in concept sketches for the Phoenix and the Star Trek: The Magazine article on the Phoenix.
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Old January 26 2009, 12:02 AM   #5
miraclefan
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

You know,this thread got me thinking..why is it we trek fans(and sci-fi fans in general)spend so much time and effort in to trying to figure out how something FICTIONAL works?I mean don't get me wrong I have done the same thing PLENTY of times,but when I look at the Phoenix I doubt the guys designing and building the MODEL of the Phoenix we're seriously thinking to themselves how this ship worked.They where just trying to make something look cool and make the audience in the theater go OOHH..&..AAHHH..And it worked we're still talking about this ship.Mission accomplished
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Old January 26 2009, 01:59 AM   #6
GodThingFormerly
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

CuttingEdge100 wrote: View Post
I was thinking that I would have designed it with ring-shaped warp-engines. If launched into space with rockets, I'd be thinking of using a bunch of rockets (Look at the cover of "STAR TREK: The Eugenic Wars - The Rise And Fall Of Khan Noonien Singh Volume 2" by Greg Cox).


Holy fudge, Cox had a fully assembled DY-100 launch from the planet's surface without even a fairing to render the cargo modules at least partially aerodynamic?

TGT
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Old January 26 2009, 04:43 AM   #7
Albertese
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

The God Thing wrote: View Post

Holy fudge, Cox had a fully assembled DY-100 launch from the planet's surface without even a fairing to render the cargo modules at least partially aerodynamic?

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That was how it was depicted in both the Star Trek Chronology (by the Okudas) and also I model depicting the DY-100 in this very launch mode appeared on screen (though in the background) of a 20th Century office in "Future's End" (VGR). So evidently, that is how it was done. Even though it doesn't seem to make much sense. I mean, besides the aerodynamic drag, would it seem unbalanced with all the cargo pods on the one side like that?
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Old January 26 2009, 05:44 AM   #8
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

I'm of two minds about the Phoenix. If I'd been asked independent of the movie itself, I would definitely say that early warp engines should look completely different than what we're familiar with 200 years down the road. I think evolution over time is not only more believable, but more satisfying in the long view.

But dramatically, which is what matters most for a movie like First Contact, they went with the right look. Seeing the familiar nacelles emerge from the missile was a great moment, one that even my girlfriend reacted to with a kind of "aha" sound, as though the ship wasn't right without them. They're what we recognize emotionally, and as a signifier for the birth of the Trek universe nothing else would do.

It's kind of a shame, but this is what happens when a show appeals both intellectually and emotionally. Sometimes the two have to fight it out.
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Old January 26 2009, 02:28 PM   #9
BK613
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

I am not sure what I would have done with the Phoenix other than NOT have it sitting on top of a ballistic missile type that was removed from U S missile silos before TNG ever aired.

Probably would have used a updated DY-100 class...or the Venturestar, since that program hadn't been canceled yet.
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Old January 26 2009, 05:29 PM   #10
largo
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

i'd cover it with product placement logos. the phoenix, powered by ebay.com!
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Old January 26 2009, 07:09 PM   #11
regemet
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

If I was to use a rocket for take off my choice would be the Satern 5.
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Old January 26 2009, 07:27 PM   #12
CuttingEdge100
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

BorgMan,
Given the nature of the time in which the Phoenix launched, docking with a space-plane or space station wouldn't be an option.
Do you mean because the story takes place after WW3? Or that it's not technically feasable?

If the former, that I understand, but regarding technological ability, we already have the technology to build such a thing -- you're saying in over 50 years that won't be applied into something useable?

As for the rocket itself, I think that it being a Titan can be taken with a grain of salt. It would be indeed more logical if it is a bigger rocket. If a small lunar lander needs a big ole rocket, a warpship, with all it's crude warpcoils and sensors, would need a much bigger rocket to take it into orbit.
I'm not talking about launching a DY-100 into orbit. I'm talking about launching a considerably smaller vehicle. However the same number of rockets would be used to be more realistic.


Soot,
I'm of two minds about the Phoenix. If I'd been asked independent of the movie itself, I would definitely say that early warp engines should look completely different than what we're familiar with 200 years down the road. I think evolution over time is not only more believable, but more satisfying in the long view.
Agreed

But dramatically, which is what matters most for a movie like First Contact, they went with the right look. Seeing the familiar nacelles emerge from the missile was a great moment, one that even my girlfriend reacted to with a kind of "aha" sound, as though the ship wasn't right without them. They're what we recognize emotionally, and as a signifier for the birth of the Trek universe nothing else would do.
Actually the XCV-330 had a ring-shaped warp-drive which was pre TOS.


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Old January 26 2009, 11:42 PM   #13
Praetor
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

Where's aridas sofia? I believe his speculative/alternate Phoenix had an accelerator 'gate' that it had to pass through to go to warp, which in turn led to later ships with the 'ring drive' which led to sets of rings, i.e. nacelles. From what I can remember of it I quite liked his setup, and I don't see why it couldn't have been modified to fit the FC scenario. I don't remember how, or if, he suggested it would be orbited.
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Old January 27 2009, 01:32 AM   #14
Dukhat
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

The God Thing wrote: View Post
CuttingEdge100 wrote: View Post
I was thinking that I would have designed it with ring-shaped warp-engines. If launched into space with rockets, I'd be thinking of using a bunch of rockets (Look at the cover of "STAR TREK: The Eugenic Wars - The Rise And Fall Of Khan Noonien Singh Volume 2" by Greg Cox).


Holy fudge, Cox had a fully assembled DY-100 launch from the planet's surface without even a fairing to render the cargo modules at least partially aerodynamic?

TGT
That was not Greg Cox's idea. It was Michael Okuda's idea, since he built the model on the cover of Cox's book. And if I understood his reasoning, it was that in 1996, there wouldn't have been any other way of getting the ship into space, unless it was built in space.

Do I find his model even remotely plausible? Not really (unless both the cargo module and the conning tower were already in space waiting to be attached to the main body of the ship, which would solve your aerodynamic problem), but it was the best idea he had at the time, considering the design of the Botany Bay.
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Old January 27 2009, 02:53 AM   #15
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

CuttingEdge100 wrote: View Post
Actually the XCV-330 had a ring-shaped warp-drive which was pre TOS.
Yeah, but I doubt a lot of people have a strong emotional connection to it. Most casual fans probably wouldn't even recognize the ship if you showed it to them. Much better to evoke the 1701, if you want the scene to appeal to as many people as possible.
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