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Old August 20 2010, 03:41 PM   #1
Jose Tyler
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Intrepid Class Landing Ability

I always thought that the ability of the Intrepid class starship to land and take off was pretty cool, but my question is, why would you design a starship to land? I fully understand that the ability of a starship (or a part of it at least) to make planet-fall in an emergency makes sense, and Voyager showed that you could land if a planet’s atmosphere was to full of technobabble to beam through, but why else would you do it? I am trying to think of in-universe reasons why you would go to so much trouble to design that feature and take up valuable space with landing gear.
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Old August 20 2010, 03:55 PM   #2
Santaman
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

Maybe it would be a good starting piont for a batallion marines or the like to have a fully armed and shielded basecamp at your disposal and there are probably other reasons to want a ship to be able to land.

I have another candidate, the Sydney class, in case of this one its rather a great solution for if you want to start a colony or have to deliver stuff to places where transporters don't work, instead of doing half a bazillion shuttle flights you'd just land the entire ship and deliver quickly stuff like 40.000 tons of grain or 500 passengers.
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Old August 20 2010, 04:54 PM   #3
Meredith
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

I would like to see a Full sized ship that looks like a runabout, but it would look too much like the Galactica from BSG.
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Old August 20 2010, 05:42 PM   #4
C.E. Evans
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

Meredith wrote: View Post
I would like to see a Full sized ship that looks like a runabout, but it would look too much like the Galactica from BSG.
The Voyager that almost was (note the runabout-inspired pylons)...
http://www.starshipdatalink.net/art/images/dv-8.jpg


Jose Tyler wrote:
I always thought that the ability of the Intrepid class starship to land and take off was pretty cool, but my question is, why would you design a starship to land? I fully understand that the ability of a starship (or a part of it at least) to make planet-fall in an emergency makes sense, and Voyager showed that you could land if a planet’s atmosphere was to full of technobabble to beam through, but why else would you do it? I am trying to think of in-universe reasons why you would go to so much trouble to design that feature and take up valuable space with landing gear.
Long-term scientific research on an unexplored planet that might last weeks or even months in duration. In that capacity, the ship acts a ground command base for planetary survey teams, IMO.
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Old August 21 2010, 07:24 PM   #5
Vanyel
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

I think it would also open up the number of places that it could go to for repairs, up grades and the like. The Galaxy class was built on the ground and presumably assembled in space. The Intrepid could go back to the ground for repair and leave the space docks for the bigger ships. Same with the Defiant class.
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Old August 21 2010, 09:54 PM   #6
FalTorPan
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

I thought the Intrepid looked very ungainly when grounded. I'm sure that the ship's center of mass is shifted aftward using TECH-TECH subspace TECH fields, so that it doesn't tip on its nose, but... meh.
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Old August 21 2010, 10:09 PM   #7
Vanyel
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

FalTorPan wrote: View Post
I thought the Intrepid looked very ungainly when grounded. I'm sure that the ship's center of mass is shifted aftward using TECH-TECH subspace TECH fields, so that it doesn't tip on its nose, but... meh.
That or the warp nacelles are heavier than they appear and help pull the ships center of mass back.
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Old August 22 2010, 01:02 AM   #8
C.E. Evans
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

Vanyel wrote: View Post
FalTorPan wrote: View Post
I thought the Intrepid looked very ungainly when grounded. I'm sure that the ship's center of mass is shifted aftward using TECH-TECH subspace TECH fields, so that it doesn't tip on its nose, but... meh.
That or the warp nacelles are heavier than they appear and help pull the ships center of mass back.
Some tech manuals have suggested that the warp coils inside the nacelles are the heaviest single part of a ship...despite appearances, an Intrepid-class ship might be perfectly balanced when it's on the ground.
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Old August 22 2010, 12:02 PM   #9
Timo
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

I wonder what other Starfleet ship classes were designed with frequent planetary landings in mind. I mean, each and every one of them should be theoretically capable of it, but something like the Constitution would probably be uncomfortable sitting on the ground...

A starship might gain something of a defensive advantage in battle by landing on a planet. Half the directions from which the enemy could attack would be eliminated on one stroke, after all. The ship could quickly dig a foxhole for herself in bedrock, too, becoming quite a dominating fortress...

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Old August 22 2010, 01:24 PM   #10
C.E. Evans
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

I wonder what other Starfleet ship classes were designed with frequent planetary landings in mind. I mean, each and every one of them should be theoretically capable of it, but something like the Constitution would probably be uncomfortable sitting on the ground...
Presumably, the Defiant- and Nova-classes had planetfall & planetary takeoff capability, according to various reference books. Starship Spotter had it being a fairly new innovation among the newer Federation starships at the time, but I always thought that at least the saucer section of a Constitution-class starship could do it as well.

Many other designs may be capable of landing on planets, but perhaps only in large bodies of water where they can actually float upon, perhaps...
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Old August 23 2010, 12:30 AM   #11
Vanyel
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

I always wondered why the Intrepid Class had 4 landing struts (I seem to recall the Defiant Class had 4 too). Wouldn't 3 be better? They'd take up less internal space and I had always thought that 3 legs made the sturdiest stance.
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Old August 23 2010, 12:37 AM   #12
Vanyel
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

Timo wrote: View Post
I wonder what other Starfleet ship classes were designed with frequent planetary landings in mind. I mean, each and every one of them should be theoretically capable of it, but something like the Constitution would probably be uncomfortable sitting on the ground...

A starship might gain something of a defensive advantage in battle by landing on a planet. Half the directions from which the enemy could attack would be eliminated on one stroke, after all. The ship could quickly dig a foxhole for herself in bedrock, too, becoming quite a dominating fortress...

Timo Saloniemi
Maybe a Galaxy Class saucer could do that? In a controlled landing her system would be intact. That would leave leave a base able to hold hundreds of people, with a giant phaser array, and a good sized shuttle bay. Add in some extra fusion reactors, or a small warp core, to power the phasers and the shields and there you go...instant beachhead.
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Old August 23 2010, 03:50 AM   #13
James Wright
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

Wouldn't it be better to have a starship that can land on M class planets when establishing colonies?
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Old August 23 2010, 08:04 AM   #14
Timo
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

I had always thought that 3 legs made the sturdiest stance.
That's just the lowest number you can use for a sturdy stance. Four is better, five is better still, and an infinite number of legs (essentially, one very large leg) is the best of all. And an infinite number of legs doesn't necessarily mean space wasted, because every individual leg could then be infinitely small and flimsy... It would be easy to inagine a system where a ship stands on five hundred thin spikes, which put together easily support the weight of the ship, and perfectly match the contours of the landing surface (as each spike can be independently adjusted in length), but where the ring of spikes when retracted takes up very little room overall.

Three legs is fine. But if you lose one, your ship will capsize. Four legs is better, because you might in theory stay upright even after losing one leg (which is why walking machines tend to use at least four legs - unless they are very good at balancing, in which case three legs are possible, two are a challenge, but even a single leg might suffice). Five legs are easier to arrange in a layout that allows for the loss of any single leg. But five hundred little legs might still be the best way to go, as any hundred of them could be lost with nary an effect on stability (but a minor effect on how much weight the system can take).

If none of your legs can adjust to any degree, though, then the more legs you have, the less chance you have of matching the surface contours. In that case, three might be a better bet than four.

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Old August 23 2010, 04:37 PM   #15
Mr Silver
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Re: Intrepid Class Landing Ability

James Wright wrote: View Post
Wouldn't it be better to have a starship that can land on M class planets when establishing colonies?
I'm pretty sure most Starships are capable of Planetary landings, it just depends on the surface area, Voyager was designed with Planetary landing in mind, likely due to its function as a Scientific Exploration Ship, therefore the ability to land was implemented to easily make observations at close range. The ship itself isn't that big compared to larger Starfleet Ships, therefore it could land in an enclosed area of an M Class Planet and send out Science Teams to investigate Pre-Warp Civilisations without a substantial risk of detection, having access to Voyagers facilities, without having to beam aboard, especially if samples are prone to transporter damage, makes the Landing Ability all the more useful (granted you could argue that they could just take a shuttlecraft, but thats the best attempt I can make to explain the Landing Ability)

Many of the "Colony Ships" we've seen on Trek are "Freighter-Like", with the ability to disconnect modules, that can serve multiple functions to a Colony
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