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Old January 27 2009, 07:00 PM   #16
Hyperspace05
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

The whole thing about launching it on a Titan II missile/rocket is ludicrous...

Well IMO the crux of the problem with the Phoenix in "First Contact" is that they insisted that Cochrane developed the warp drive basically in his garage, in the middle of a new dark age. Right.

That would be like the Wright brothers inventing the scramjet engine before the they had a working aircraft.
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Old January 27 2009, 08:02 PM   #17
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

soot wrote: View Post
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.
I'd say you pretty much hit that one right on.
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Old January 27 2009, 08:37 PM   #18
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

Has it ever actually been established that the ring on the XCV-330 is in fact its warp drive--assuming it was a warp ship at all? I've always has the impression that it was a habitation ring, which rotated to create artificial gravity
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Old January 27 2009, 09:24 PM   #19
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

EliyahuQeoni wrote: View Post
Has it ever actually been established that the ring on the XCV-330 is in fact its warp drive--assuming it was a warp ship at all? I've always has the impression that it was a habitation ring, which rotated to create artificial gravity
I believe some of Jefferies' sketches on which the painting is based label them as 'space distortion drive rings' or something like that. They also detail a slightly different 'nose cose' setup and how it has hangars to the side, how the doors open, etc. But of course those are technically non-canon sketches, no matter how much personal reverence I put into his work.
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Old January 27 2009, 10:15 PM   #20
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

Hyperspace05 wrote: View Post
IMO the crux of the problem with the Phoenix in "First Contact" is that they insisted that Cochrane developed the warp drive basically in his garage, in the middle of a new dark age. Right.
That was the problem I had too. In the Reeves-Stevens novel "Federation," it was established that Cochrane worked with a whole team of scientists to develop warp drive, and it was only after he had completed his prototype that the war started. That makes much more sense than what was shown in the movie. However, Star Trek seems to have always had a problem with technology being developed by committee; take the transporter in ENT. Again, they establish that it was created by just one guy.

EliyahuQeoni wrote: View Post
Has it ever actually been established that the ring on the XCV-330 is in fact its warp drive--assuming it was a warp ship at all? I've always has the impression that it was a habitation ring, which rotated to create artificial gravity
No, it was never established to be a warp drive. It was only after the Vulcan ships in ENT were shown that people equated their design with this old drawing. IIRC, Doug Drexler said he was influenced by the design, but that doesn't mean that the ship had annular warp drive as well. As a matter of fact, the drawing seems to show the propulsion as rocket exhaust coming from the rear of the ship.
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Old January 28 2009, 12:50 AM   #21
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

I have indeed been hinting at WW3; technologically speaking it wouldn't be a problem no, but the war would ravage a lot ofthe infrastructure needed to launch and/or support a space station.

Furthermore, I'm not saying that a Titan should launch a DY-100, but more drawing the comparison between a nuclear warhead, which weighs a certain amount, versus an experimental warpship, which would weigh considerably more than a nuclear warhead. In that light a Titan rocket would not have enough fuel to get it into higher atmosphere where the ship could decouple itself from the exhausted rocket and warp off without falling back to earth
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Old January 28 2009, 01:54 AM   #22
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

Dukhat wrote: View Post

EliyahuQeoni wrote: View Post
Has it ever actually been established that the ring on the XCV-330 is in fact its warp drive--assuming it was a warp ship at all? I've always has the impression that it was a habitation ring, which rotated to create artificial gravity
No, it was never established to be a warp drive. It was only after the Vulcan ships in ENT were shown that people equated their design with this old drawing. IIRC, Doug Drexler said he was influenced by the design, but that doesn't mean that the ship had annular warp drive as well. As a matter of fact, the drawing seems to show the propulsion as rocket exhaust coming from the rear of the ship.
From the excellent article on the ringship at trekplace.com



This is the sketch I was thinking of earlier. This one is actually closer to the finished product than I remembered - another 3/4 forward type view shows a different 'pod' at the front. Note that the labels were inserted by them over Jefferies handwritten notes but are accurate. Obviously the terms are a little different than we're used to, but the rings are a type of field generator (i.e., coils) and perhaps the 'centriverter' is a type of impeller for the generated field.
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Old February 2 2009, 01:42 AM   #23
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

I'm not sure I'd go with that exactly.

I'm thinking of using a design based more or less on the MOL (Manned Orbiting Laboratory) -- Picture Here: http://pagesperso-orange.fr/max.q/ap...utaway_big.jpg -- clean it up a little bit, taper it a tiny bit in the back, possibly add a little thickness in the middle and put a ring around that area, and connect it to the main hull with some pylons (at least one, no more than four).

The main part of the ship -- the part based on the MOL could be launched up into space with a couple of large rockets.


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Old February 28 2009, 07:10 PM   #24
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

Okay, to clarify my idea...

The idea is kind of to use a ring-ship set-up kind of like the ducted propellers shown in this image.



Just not with the plane attached (or the propellers in the duct).


With the main hull-fuselage to kind of look like either the pod the ducted-prop is attached to (but with no hole in the front), and like the 1960's Manned Orbiting Laboratory (MOL) Concept



Or some kind of mix between the two (hull/fuselage-wise). For example the hub on the ducted prop is a bit plumper which actually looks better with the ring-ship, though the gemini-like capsule at the front of the MOL and the basic design features of the MOL is more in the spirit of simplicity.

Oddly the fins which the ducted prop design features (assuming they were about half the span they are) could actually be of use as they could mount rocket-engines on them.

The Manned-Orbiting Laboratory for the record was designed to be launched from the ground by a series of rockets, so there isn't an issue here regarding launching something of this particular size off the ground. Don't know how much difference there would be in weight however.

I don't know how practical launching the ring would be. Honestly the idea of launching the two separately and connecting them in orbit makes more sense.

While in the story Zephram Cochrane was supposed to have made his flight around the time of WWIII, I never was a fan of the idea of Cochrane doing all this research basically in a shack with such little outside support. I'm not saying he needed to have all the space-agencies in the world working around the clock, but some more assistance would have been useful I'd say.

And the idea of having Cochrane being a jackass is okay, but the thing about him not liking to fly and taking trains sounds completely absurd. The guy would certainly require a pilot's liscence for this flight in the role that he was portrayed to have made, and it seems quite bizarre that a guy who hates and deathly fears flying would go through all the machinations to learn how to fly.

Next, to fix the discrepancy between the first warp flight originally stated to be in 2061, and later altered to April 2063, the best solution would be to have the first warp-vehicles to be much smaller unmanned vehicles.

They, being smaller, and not bound by various constraints of having to carry people onboard could be launched into orbit with much greater ease. Also, in case anything serious went wrong, it would be far better for it to happen on an unmanned craft than one carrying a few people onboard.

Couple of tests, anything goes wrong they either fix it, build a new one (if it blows up or the first one was inadequate), re-test, break the speed of light.

Then over the next two, they then start somewhere along building a manned version that could carry the desired payload, meet safety requirements etc, get everything ready and break the speed of light

Still I have trouble with the idea of them doing it on the first flight. Wouldn't they have to go through all sorts of efforts calibrating the warp-engines? Also, it's not the exact same design in shape or mass distribution as the unmanned versions. So I think they'd need at least a few flights for this all to work. So the ability to refuel the ship in orbit would have to happen a few times for this all to work.

Whether this would be carried out by a space-station or by stuff sent-up from Earth, I don't know.

One idea I was thinking of, though I'm not 100% sure to go for it, was to go with matter/anti-matter in the warp-drive. I don't even know if in TOS it was specifically said to be fusion powered. Regardless, I'd want the fuel to be carried in the warp-engine (the ring) -- it seems less complicated than having the reactor in the ship and then shuffling the energy to the ring. It would also take up less space inside the rest of the ship. It would also open up the option of being able to jettison the ring should something go wrong.

The other thing I'm wondering is -- is the capsule necessary for getting back down to Earth? I mean Richard Branson's planning his Virgin Galactic service -- sure it can't attain a full orbit, but in 50 or 60 years a new design could allow a vehicle of similar size and such to attain an orbit, then de-orbit, and something like that could be sent up, dock with them, pick them up, and then land them back on Earth right? Either way a capsule would fit on the design.


I'd like to hear opinions whether they be to the re-imagined design I thought up, or the re-imagined story-line.


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Old February 28 2009, 08:37 PM   #25
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

CuttingEdge100 wrote: View Post
Okay, to clarify my idea...

The idea is kind of to use a ring-ship set-up kind of like the ducted propellers shown in this image.



Just not with the plane attached (or the propellers in the duct).


With the main hull-fuselage to kind of look like either the pod the ducted-prop is attached to (but with no hole in the front), and like the 1960's Manned Orbiting Laboratory (MOL) Concept



Or some kind of mix between the two (hull/fuselage-wise). For example the hub on the ducted prop is a bit plumper which actually looks better with the ring-ship, though the gemini-like capsule at the front of the MOL and the basic design features of the MOL is more in the spirit of simplicity.

Oddly the fins which the ducted prop design features (assuming they were about half the span they are) could actually be of use as they could mount rocket-engines on them.
I really like this approach. It's unconventional enough to be interesting, but the dual-ring pod setup is nicely evocative of the later style nacelles.

The one thing I wasn't sure of is this: do you propose mating this craft to a larger ring, or just be warp-capable as is?

The Manned-Orbiting Laboratory for the record was designed to be launched from the ground by a series of rockets, so there isn't an issue here regarding launching something of this particular size off the ground. Don't know how much difference there would be in weight however.

I don't know how practical launching the ring would be. Honestly the idea of launching the two separately and connecting them in orbit makes more sense.

While in the story Zephram Cochrane was supposed to have made his flight around the time of WWIII, I never was a fan of the idea of Cochrane doing all this research basically in a shack with such little outside support. I'm not saying he needed to have all the space-agencies in the world working around the clock, but some more assistance would have been useful I'd say.
I've always held the notion that perhaps Cochrane had been working on the project since long before the war, and was moved to a remote and theoretically safe location such as Bozeman in an effort to protect the project. To my thinking, most of the project was already finished, and it was Cochrane and his team who, having survived the war, decided to finish it for the reasons basically specified in the movie.

And the idea of having Cochrane being a jackass is okay, but the thing about him not liking to fly and taking trains sounds completely absurd. The guy would certainly require a pilot's liscence for this flight in the role that he was portrayed to have made, and it seems quite bizarre that a guy who hates and deathly fears flying would go through all the machinations to learn how to fly.
Yeah, that was a bit much. I'd just attribute it as hyperbole from nervousness regarding his new-found importance to history.

Next, to fix the discrepancy between the first warp flight originally stated to be in 2061, and later altered to April 2063, the best solution would be to have the first warp-vehicles to be much smaller unmanned vehicles.

They, being smaller, and not bound by various constraints of having to carry people onboard could be launched into orbit with much greater ease. Also, in case anything serious went wrong, it would be far better for it to happen on an unmanned craft than one carrying a few people onboard.

Couple of tests, anything goes wrong they either fix it, build a new one (if it blows up or the first one was inadequate), re-test, break the speed of light.

Then over the next two, they then start somewhere along building a manned version that could carry the desired payload, meet safety requirements etc, get everything ready and break the speed of light
That also makes perfect sense, and also seems like something that could have also been worked on before the war broke out to me. I don't think it's really necessary to cling too hard to the 2061 date anyway.

Still I have trouble with the idea of them doing it on the first flight. Wouldn't they have to go through all sorts of efforts calibrating the warp-engines? Also, it's not the exact same design in shape or mass distribution as the unmanned versions. So I think they'd need at least a few flights for this all to work. So the ability to refuel the ship in orbit would have to happen a few times for this all to work.
Luck? Also makes one wonder if they really accomplished it so easily in the unaltered timeline, or, if the whole thing was a predestination paradox and without the intervention of the Enterprise, it would have been successful at all. In that regard, the Borg might be said to have accidentally created the Federation.

Whether this would be carried out by a space-station or by stuff sent-up from Earth, I don't know.
I would think there would have at least been space-station support prior to the war, or alternatively, a lunar colony. A small, self-sustaining lunar colony with which Cochrane could have maintained contact might nicely solve various issues.

One idea I was thinking of, though I'm not 100% sure to go for it, was to go with matter/anti-matter in the warp-drive. I don't even know if in TOS it was specifically said to be fusion powered. Regardless, I'd want the fuel to be carried in the warp-engine (the ring) -- it seems less complicated than having the reactor in the ship and then shuffling the energy to the ring. It would also take up less space inside the rest of the ship. It would also open up the option of being able to jettison the ring should something go wrong.
Agreed, but like you I'm not sure about matter/antimatter. Personally, I'd be inclined to say no, if only because of the apparent lack of resources. Alternatively, perhaps the Phoenix was the only craft at the time which used M/AM, having used up almost all of the antimatter that had been created by Eath over a decades-long laborious process (aside apparently from the 'Friendship One' probe seen on 'Voyager') and that later craft used fusion power until more massive amounts antimatter could be produced later on.

The other thing I'm wondering is -- is the capsule necessary for getting back down to Earth? I mean Richard Branson's planning his Virgin Galactic service -- sure it can't attain a full orbit, but in 50 or 60 years a new design could allow a vehicle of similar size and such to attain an orbit, then de-orbit, and something like that could be sent up, dock with them, pick them up, and then land them back on Earth right? Either way a capsule would fit on the design.
I think the capsule makes sense either way. Your craft certainly looks capable of de-orbiting in its entirety, but the capsule would at the least be a nice safety precaution.
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Last edited by Praetor; February 28 2009 at 11:17 PM.
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Old February 28 2009, 10:10 PM   #26
aridas sofia
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

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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.
I'm sorry. I just saw this post. Here is a brief little outline showing some of what you mentioned.

Size comparison of various testships and the giant negative energy induction ring they are launched through. This giant ring will later shrink to the point it can be carried along (ringships) and even later, carried within nacelles (coils):

http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n...mparison-2.jpg

Here are the various testships shown in silhouette above, including my take on Phoenix and Bonaventure:

http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n...rion-lines.jpg

http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n...nix2-lines.jpg

http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n...nix4-lines.jpg

http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n...ssey-lines.jpg

http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n...ture-lines.jpg

And here is how the ring gets incorporated early on. This is Valiant from WNMHGB:

http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n...aliant-rev.jpg

And a very early Earth Star Fleet ship from the 2090s:

http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n...ellerophon.jpg

When I draw a nacelle on these early ships, it is a rocket -- the nacelles are M/AM rockets, the conventional impulse drive. Fore and aft are hypergravity containers that hold microsingularities, and for the ships with rings, amidships there are the warp rings that hold open the wormhole created by those singularities. The habitation module is tucked safeli at the center of those rings. For ships without rings, there is the big, stationary warp ring to get you going. If you fall out of warp before you get back, you have a long haul home from the Oort Cloud on impulse.

As you can tell, I was heavily influenced both by Jefferies' early art and contemporary speculation on how a warp drive might work.
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Old February 28 2009, 10:59 PM   #27
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

Thank you for posting, aridas. Better late than never! (I'd just assumed you were busy. )

Your work has an amazing degree of ingenuity and thoroughness worthy of Master Jefferies himself. When taken separately from everything post-TOS, yours gels so well with what we saw on TOS.

No matter what the details are, I really think the 'ring' direction is the winning way to go for a re-imagined Phoenix.
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Old March 1 2009, 12:07 AM   #28
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

Praetor,
I really like this approach. It's unconventional enough to be interesting, but the dual-ring pod setup is nicely evocative of the later style nacelles.

The one thing I wasn't sure of is this: do you propose mating this craft to a larger ring, or just be warp-capable as is?
Nonononono... I meant the whole ship would look like one of those pods with the rings around them.

The main hull would look like a mix of the manned orbiting laboratory and the pod (the thing that mounts the propeller and the duct around it)

I've always held the notion that perhaps Cochrane had been working on the project since long before the war, and was moved to a remote and theoretically safe location such as Bozeman in an effort to protect the project. To my thinking, most of the project was already finished, and it was Cochrane and his team who, having survived the war, decided to finish it for the reasons basically specified in the movie.
That isn't all that bad a premise. I was thinking that the war could start before they ever reached the prototype stage (the unmanned versions). The war finishes, they get back on their feet, they build the unmanned versions, test them, it works, they build the manned version, test it, go FTL.

Yeah, that was a bit much. I'd just attribute it as hyperbole from nervousness regarding his new-found importance to history.
To be honest, even then it doesn't exactly fit...

That also makes perfect sense, and also seems like something that could have also been worked on before the war broke out to me. I don't think it's really necessary to cling too hard to the 2061 date anyway.
I'd like to stick to it. That way the discrepancy could be hypothetically resolved.

Luck? Also makes one wonder if they really accomplished it so easily in the unaltered timeline
Probably. As in First Contact, Cochrane, Riker and LaForge made the flight at pretty much the exact same time it was "supposed" to have been made in 2063. If they didn't the Vulcan ship wouldn't have seen their warp signature and altered course.

I would think there would have at least been space-station support prior to the war, or alternatively, a lunar colony. A small, self-sustaining lunar colony with which Cochrane could have maintained contact might nicely solve various issues.
Agreed

Agreed, but like you I'm not sure about matter/antimatter. Personally, I'd be inclined to say no, if only because of the apparent lack of resources.
Well anti-matter can technically be created now. The trick is making enough of it and safely storing it.

Alternatively, perhaps the Phoenix was the only craft at the time which used M/AM, having used up almost all of the antimatter that had been created by Eath over a decades-long laborious process (aside apparently from the 'Friendship One' probe seen on 'Voyager') and that later craft used fusion power until more massive amounts antimatter could be produced later on.
That would be an interesting take. Truthfully speaking considering the Phoenix was the first warp-ship it probably wouldn't be as efficient as later warp-engines and would consume more matter/anti-matter for the same effect.

I think the capsule makes sense either way. Your craft certainly looks capable of de-orbiting in its entirety, but the capsule would at the least be a nice safety precaution.
Like an ejection capsule... bail out if all goes to hell in a handbasket


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Old March 1 2009, 12:51 AM   #29
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

CuttingEdge100 wrote: View Post
Praetor,
I really like this approach. It's unconventional enough to be interesting, but the dual-ring pod setup is nicely evocative of the later style nacelles.

The one thing I wasn't sure of is this: do you propose mating this craft to a larger ring, or just be warp-capable as is?
Nonononono... I meant the whole ship would look like one of those pods with the rings around them.

The main hull would look like a mix of the manned orbiting laboratory and the pod (the thing that mounts the propeller and the duct around it)
Oh. Wow, what planet was I on? Sorry. Well, I still like that then.

We seem to still be more or less on the same page for everything else, if not on the same line.
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Old March 3 2009, 06:48 PM   #30
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Re: If You Could Re-Imagine the Phoenix?

When was it said that Cochrane was born in 2032? Was that in TOS or during FC or after?
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