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Trek Tech Pass me the quantum flux regulator, will you?

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Old May 5 2009, 04:17 AM   #1
CTM
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Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

Be it the "Refit" Enterprise, or -A, virtually all the plans I have seen indicate the Vertical Intermix Chamber (seen in the Main Engineering Scenes in TMP and TWOK, and a modified version seen in TUC) is shown to extend from the bottom of the secondary hull through the neck to the "Impulse Deflection Crystal."

Is there any real reason to assume it must actually travel that way? Is there any on-screen evidence to indicate that it indeed connects with the IDC, or is that simply an assumption that seems to have universally been agreed upon?

I am looking over any and all deck plans I can get my eyes upon, and every last one of them seems to show that, and while in theory it might make some sense, actually trying to fit it into the neck is problematic at best. Trying to fit the torpedo tubes around it is neigh-on impossible, not without making some very poor ergonomic choices (do you really want the crew manning the Torpedo bays to have to pass through the intermix chamber room at every shift change? Do you really want to have one of your handful of exernal docking ports (one third of the primary ingress/egress points in spacedock - assuming the saucer edge on p/s, the secondary hull port that was used in TMP and the Torpedo Bay port used in TWOK) lead to people and any stuff they are carrying pass through the intermix chamber room almost non-stop while in dock? (yes, I know the ports were never seen to have been used for such, but the point still stands, why have a port in a location that makes it difficult to get to the remainder of the ship from?

Additionally, trying to fit both a turbo-shaft and the intermix chamber into the neck makes things very tight in the front (no good way to route the turboshaft around to aft of the intermix chamber, as in the saucer it would end up in the impulse engines before it could reach the neck). Overall, it would be a much more functional ship for personnel to use if the intermix chamber did NOT go through the neck.
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Old May 5 2009, 07:58 AM   #2
Timo
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

There is no requirement for positioning the vertical shaft at any specific point on the central axis of the ship, no. Its upward reach is not seen, beyond the two decks' worth that exist on the set. Its downward observable reach is comparable, or a deck greater, in a single ST:TMP shot that appears to involve forced perspective and some mirrors.

Beyond that, the shaft could make sharp kinks, or split, or truncate in fuel tanks, or whatever.

I don't think it a big problem to fit the shaft next to the ST2:TWoK torpedo deck, really. Indeed, if the shaft carries antimatter, then it would be nice to have it close to the torpedo loader that supposedly injects antimatter to the warheads just prior to firing.

OTOH, I do think that moving the entire Main Engineering set farther aft than Probert originally intended would be a good move. It would make possible and plausible the long corridor observed extending dead ahead of Main Engineering in ST:TMP, for one thing; this corridor would then truncate in the master vertical turbolift shaft between the two hulls - the feature that is flanked by the greenish "armor panels" on the outside of the model (where Probert expected the vertical shaft to be). The repositioned shaft would then probably truncate in a fuel tank within the neck, much as in TNG-era starships.

Something like this, modified from Shane Johnson's cutaway in Mr Scott's Guide:

Perhaps combined with this sort of a torp deck layout:

Timo Saloniemi
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Old May 5 2009, 01:06 PM   #3
CTM
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

Timo wrote: View Post
There is no requirement for positioning the vertical shaft at any specific point on the central axis of the ship, no. Its upward reach is not seen, beyond the two decks' worth that exist on the set. Its downward observable reach is comparable, or a deck greater, in a single ST:TMP shot that appears to involve forced perspective and some mirrors.

Beyond that, the shaft could make sharp kinks, or split, or truncate in fuel tanks, or whatever.

I don't think it a big problem to fit the shaft next to the ST2:TWoK torpedo deck, really. Indeed, if the shaft carries antimatter, then it would be nice to have it close to the torpedo loader that supposedly injects antimatter to the warheads just prior to firing.

OTOH, I do think that moving the entire Main Engineering set farther aft than Probert originally intended would be a good move. It would make possible and plausible the long corridor observed extending dead ahead of Main Engineering in ST:TMP, for one thing; this corridor would then truncate in the master vertical turbolift shaft between the two hulls - the feature that is flanked by the greenish "armor panels" on the outside of the model (where Probert expected the vertical shaft to be). The repositioned shaft would then probably truncate in a fuel tank within the neck, much as in TNG-era starships.

Something like this, modified from Shane Johnson's cutaway in Mr Scott's Guide:

Perhaps combined with this sort of a torp deck layout:

Timo Saloniemi
While I like the idea of moving Main Engineering back some, and perhaps bending the shaft to run parallel to the Jeffries Tube to the IDC, and I like that Torpedo Deck layout much better, that winds up placing the bottom end in the Botanical Garden (Is it sufficiently shown on screen that the row of blue windows is in fact the Botanical Garden?) which again runs afoul of practicalities. Could those windows be explained as part of the antimatter containment instead? IIRC, we see some vague shapes inside that imply (but do not actually establish) trees or bushes. If it was a more uniform blue, I might much more be willing to accept it as antimatter storage.

I guess that begs the question: Why would you want large windows like that on the Botanical Garden (if that is what it is)? You aren't going to get sunlight for the garden that way, you are going to have to artificially create the illumination for photosynthesis anyway. For the crew to look out? There are windows all over the ship. These windows are HUGE - a significant vulnerability for a ship that could be in combat.
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Old May 5 2009, 04:12 PM   #4
Timo
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

..that winds up placing the bottom end in the Botanical Garden (Is it sufficiently shown on screen that the row of blue windows is in fact the Botanical Garden?) which again runs afoul of practicalities.
There are no sufficiently close-up close-ups of the windows in the original ST:TMP (where a photograph of trees inserted behind the transparent squares reputedly was used), and I don't think the DE makes a difference in this respect. In TOS, the garden didn't have large exterior windows, and indeed one wonders why such things would be necessary or even possible in an arboretum. Surely the extreme variance in starlight would be harmful to the plants?

One also wonders why an arboretum would glow blue from the inside. Plants normally have little use for blue light, and the users might wish for something more "natural", too - as seen in the TOS interior scenes.

In that respect, it makes perfect sense that there'd be a blue-glowing piece of high power machinery right behind those windows...

Perhaps the "windows" are no more vulnerable than the comparable blue-glowing things on the sides of the nacelles? Perhaps their function is the same: to allow an intense subspace field to radiate out, with some parasitic blue light emissions to accompany it. For all we know, those blue squares were a vital component of the new shields in TMP, and actually the toughest spot on the entire hull!

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Old May 5 2009, 06:06 PM   #5
CTM
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

A quick look for the Botanical Garden yielded the memory alpha page on the subject, and a link to Probert's drawings of the TMP Enterprise: http://memory-alpha.org/en/wiki/File...rprise_cut.jpg
I think that rather definitively answers both questions. While it may not have appeared on screen per-se, the intent of those assembling and detailing the models in this regard is rather clear. I see no way around it.
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Old May 5 2009, 08:56 PM   #6
Captain Robert April
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

I've been in favor moving that shaft back for a while now, especially to allow for that torpedo bay and that corridor, and definitely in the case of the E-A.

As for that "deflection crystal", I think the biggest argument in favor of not having to connect the intermix shaft to it is the Reliant. After all, it's got two of those puppies, dorsal and ventral, and no real room for the same sort of intermix shaft.

It might be best to just chalk up the Enterprise's engine setup as something of an experiment (goes right along with the idea that the refit is a prototype).

Yes, I'm starting to ramble.

Sure, move it back, screw the deflection crystal.

Last edited by Captain Robert April; May 5 2009 at 10:55 PM.
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Old May 5 2009, 11:06 PM   #7
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

The refit engine room suffers from what I call 'Brady Bunch Syndrome' - i.e., it's too big to fit inside where it's supposed to be even though it's supposed to fit in there, just like the Brady house.
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Old May 6 2009, 06:01 PM   #8
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

Well, here's my two quatloos worth. In the case of the original refit we should respect the designers intent, but the E-A obviously has some major internal differences so anything goes? As for the deflection crystal, that's something that the vertical intermixer/warp core can, but does not necessarily have to, connect to? Also, here's a thought, might the reuse of the TNG engine room suggest that what were seeing here is actually the top of the warp core, near the impulse engines? It looks somewhat like what was intended for this area all along, and the two conduits leading away at angles toward the aft could be heading to each impluse engine?
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Old May 6 2009, 06:17 PM   #9
Praetor
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

TIN_MAN wrote: View Post
Well, here's my two quatloos worth. In the case of the original refit we should respect the designers intent,
Agreed.
TIN_MAN wrote: View Post
but the E-A obviously has some major internal differences so anything goes?
I'd say that the A should at least be arranged the same way as the refit, even if the spaces therein are rather different. If anything, I think the A's internal spaces are 'simpler' than the refit 1701 was. But for me, the warp core is in the same place on both ships.
TIN_MAN wrote: View Post
As for the deflection crystal, that's something that the vertical intermixer/warp core can, but does not necessarily have to, connect to?
If it's functioning as a 'warp field symmetry' doohickey, I'd say it doesn't have to. If it's doubling as a power converter for the impulse engines, I'd say it has to at least have a line running to it. I again prefer Probert's connected configuration for the sake of 'respect of intent.'
TIN_MAN wrote: View Post
Also, here's a thought, might the reuse of the TNG engine room suggest that what were seeing here is actually the top of the warp core, near the impulse engines? It looks somewhat like what was intended for this area all along, and the two conduits leading away at angles toward the aft could be heading to each impluse engine?
Well, the TNG TM makes it pretty clear that what we see in TNG engineering is at the middle of the core on deck 36 of the D, so I'd be inclined to put it in the same location as engineering on the refit as well. I don't think there was any original intention for it to be the top. However, one does wonder why the refit setup would have two 'branches' of similar fashion where the original only had one running longitudinally.
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Old May 6 2009, 07:08 PM   #10
TIN_MAN
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

Praetor wrote: View Post
Well, the TNG TM makes it pretty clear that what we see in TNG engineering is at the middle of the core on deck 36 of the D, so I'd be inclined to put it in the same location as engineering on the refit as well. I don't think there was any original intention for it to be the top. However, one does wonder why the refit setup would have two 'branches' of similar fashion where the original only had one running longitudinally.
Yeah, sorry, I should have been more specific. When I refered to the original intent for this area, I was reffering to TMP etc, refit, not to TNG setup, (see Probert's cross section) Obviously this area in TNG was the "intermix chamber", but it doesn't necessarily follow that this is true in the E-A? I think by pretending that "TNG set" is actually at the top of the core in the E-A (or at least something coincidently very similar) we can accomodate both it and the traditional TMP intermix chamber "set" layout in the same ship? I agree, though, the deflector cystal should be connectd to the warp core, I'm just sayin it's possible that it need not be?

Last edited by TIN_MAN; May 6 2009 at 07:18 PM.
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Old May 6 2009, 07:56 PM   #11
CTM
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

Praetor wrote: View Post
The refit engine room suffers from what I call 'Brady Bunch Syndrome' - i.e., it's too big to fit inside where it's supposed to be even though it's supposed to fit in there, just like the Brady house.

Except it is not so much that it won't fit, it is that it is a tight fit. It works, but it is not the most logical layout. Of course, when performing a refit of an existing design, that is to be expected, at least once. The compromise is typically not a great solution, but it works. I have no problem with the existing fleet of Constitutions receiving this refit, but I do have a problem with doing new-build to the refit spec. It would be akin to building "modernized" Essex class carriers from the keel up, rather than building a carrier designed for jets from the get-go. Not that the ships had outlived their usefulness, but if you were going to build a new ship, why build one with such an obvious engineering compromise if it is no more difficult to simply modify the design to incorporate the improved technology (I would envision a similar ship, but with some components moved around and a thicker neck - would resolve these issues, and be a more sound design - of course that leads us rapidly to the Excelsior design, because as you move back to the drawing board, you wind up changing "a little bit here" and "a little bit there" and the next thing you know you have doubled the mass of the design).
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Old May 6 2009, 07:59 PM   #12
Praetor
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

TIN_MAN wrote: View Post
Praetor wrote: View Post
Well, the TNG TM makes it pretty clear that what we see in TNG engineering is at the middle of the core on deck 36 of the D, so I'd be inclined to put it in the same location as engineering on the refit as well. I don't think there was any original intention for it to be the top. However, one does wonder why the refit setup would have two 'branches' of similar fashion where the original only had one running longitudinally.
Yeah, sorry, I should have been more specific. When I refered to the original intent for this area, I was reffering to TMP etc, refit, not to TNG setup, (see Probert's cross section) Obviously this area in TNG was the "intermix chamber", but it doesn't necessarily follow that this is true in the E-A? I think by pretending that "TNG set" is actually at the top of the core in the E-A (or at least something coincidently very similar) we can accomodate both it and the traditional TMP intermix chamber "set" layout in the same ship? I agree, though, the deflector cystal should be connectd to the warp core, I'm just sayin it's possible that it need not be?
Oh, I agree that it's possible. But I would think reuse of the same set at least implies similar concepts behind it.

CTM wrote: View Post
Praetor wrote: View Post
The refit engine room suffers from what I call 'Brady Bunch Syndrome' - i.e., it's too big to fit inside where it's supposed to be even though it's supposed to fit in there, just like the Brady house.

Except it is not so much that it won't fit, it is that it is a tight fit. It works, but it is not the most logical layout. Of course, when performing a refit of an existing design, that is to be expected, at least once. The compromise is typically not a great solution, but it works. I have no problem with the existing fleet of Constitutions receiving this refit, but I do have a problem with doing new-build to the refit spec. It would be akin to building "modernized" Essex class carriers from the keel up, rather than building a carrier designed for jets from the get-go. Not that the ships had outlived their usefulness, but if you were going to build a new ship, why build one with such an obvious engineering compromise if it is no more difficult to simply modify the design to incorporate the improved technology (I would envision a similar ship, but with some components moved around and a thicker neck - would resolve these issues, and be a more sound design - of course that leads us rapidly to the Excelsior design, because as you move back to the drawing board, you wind up changing "a little bit here" and "a little bit there" and the next thing you know you have doubled the mass of the design).
I also agree that it might not be the most efficient layout - but I was under the impression that the forward section of engineering with the corridor would not actually fit within the model structure if the intermix chamber is placed where Probert suggested it be placed?
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Old May 6 2009, 09:14 PM   #13
Timo
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

Yeah, that corridor sounds like the main reason for wanting to move Main Engineering...

In theory, we can move the facility aft until the lower end of the core protrudes into the main cargo hold. But we never saw the forward wall of that hold, so we can move rather far back that way.

Also in theory, we might run out of space no matter what; but in practice, both the corridor and the aft end of Main Engineering were created by using forced-perspective mattes. It shouldn't be difficult to decide that some of that forced perspective was "forced for real", and that the corridor and the aft end of ME were indeed shorter than they looked, and possibly only as long as the actual physical sets.

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Old May 6 2009, 10:00 PM   #14
Praetor
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

I know it's very self-denial of me, but I'm happy to assume it does fit even if there's visual evidence to suggest it doesn't.
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Old May 7 2009, 03:54 AM   #15
CuttingEdge100
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Re: Vertical Intermix Chamber and TMP Enterprise

Personally, I don't like the reactor system on the Enterprise-Refit, the Enterprise-A, and so on...

The reason is that there's basically only one reactor that can power the warp-engines. In the TV Series, the ship had three reactors that appeared to all be able to power the ship's warp-engines.

Redundancy is a very very useful thing on a vessel that operates routinely light-years if not dozens to hundreds of light-years from a nearby base...


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