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

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Old October 13 2011, 04:54 PM   #166
CorporalCaptain
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Re: TOS Nacelles

Hey, for the last time, the topic was TOS nacelles---how do they work? I do care about the topic; I'm commenting on the topic. I'm contributing to the topic of this thread.

I never admitted not caring about this topic, get that straight.

Your OP in this thread specifically inquired about what in TOS supports which views; it don't inquire about things from ENT, TNG, or anything else. My comments about the relevance of ENT and TNG to the degree that they are not germane is my opinion, and it is on topic within the parameters of the OP. My entry into this thread was based on the content of the OP.
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Old October 13 2011, 06:07 PM   #167
Patrickivan
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Re: TOS Nacelles

CarbonCopy wrote: View Post
Hey, for the last time, the topic was TOS nacelles---how do they work? I do care about the topic; I'm commenting on the topic. I'm contributing to the topic of this thread.

I never admitted not caring about this topic, get that straight.

Your OP in this thread specifically inquired about what in TOS supports which views; it don't inquire about things from ENT, TNG, or anything else. My comments about the relevance of ENT and TNG to the degree that they are not germane is my opinion, and it is on topic within the parameters of the OP. My entry into this thread was based on the content of the OP.
Guess I was just confusing your statement:

"My enjoyment of Star Trek does not depend on getting everything to fit together. Attempts to do that by retconning TOS actually make me enjoy it less."

So ya... C'est la vie, eh? That's all I really have say on that.

And I do recognize your contribution to the thread. Topics evolve and morph back.
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Old October 13 2011, 06:13 PM   #168
CorporalCaptain
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Re: TOS Nacelles

Thanks.
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Old October 13 2011, 07:12 PM   #169
Patrickivan
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Re: TOS Nacelles

Come On... Turn that frown

Upside Down

No hard feelings!

Ps... The pumpkin m/arcs are in the stems!
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Old October 13 2011, 07:17 PM   #170
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Re: TOS Nacelles

Cute! I may have to adapt that, and with your permission, I might (no promises).
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Old October 13 2011, 09:28 PM   #171
Cary L. Brown
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Re: TOS Nacelles

Hmmm.. glad I didn't respond before seeing how that little exchange came out..

FYI, that's a great example of how limited the internet is as far as "emotional communication" is concerned, unless we're all very, very careful. Since I was "outside" of that particular exchange, saw the misinterpretation for what it was, but I also can understand how the misinterpretation was almost inevitable.

As much as I actually hate "smilies" in concept, I've learned to use them extensively online, because putting a or a or a , or even a or a can help to show the "not so serious" intent behind a comment.

Meanwhile, or or or or, as used a few lines up in this thread, are pretty effective communicators of "mockery."

That said, I'm impressed by seeing what COULD have turned into a flame-fest recover from that (and without anyone feeling the need to "go tell daddy" either, as far as I know!).

In this case, I'm being 100% serious... no mockery involved. Good job, guys!

Now, in response to the point raised by Carbon Copy,

I get what you're saying, and it makes sense, from a certain point of view. At the same time, though, there are bits and pieces of Star Trek (classic, I mean) that I could never quite stomach. And bits that have always "bugged me" that I could never quite reconcile.

So, to me, I watch Star Trek (no TOS necessary) and I enjoy it, but I treat it as a "representation" of something that may have really happened in some "real Star Trek universe." Yes, Captain Kirk happens to look, talk, and act much like Bill Shatner, and the same applies to most of the rest of the crew.

But I do not accept that there are a bunch of clones of Diana Muldaur running around in Trek's future, becoming diplomats and yeomen and ship's doctors and the like.

While I accept that the Enterprise has all the spaces we saw on the show, I am perfectly willing to accept that they're not all located off the same curved section of corridor.

I have no problem imagining that, while "Spock's Brain" really happened, the "real" version of it is significantly different than what we saw on-screen. Same for "The Empath" or "The Apple" or some of the other episodes that still make me feel a bit queasy to watch.

And you know what? NOBODY ELSE HAS TO AGREE WITH ME. If someone else loves those three episodes, for example, and hates the ones I love "just as they are" (for example, how many people want to redesign the Doomsday Machine, while I like the design just as it is?), they can "mentally retcon" those episodes as well.

What becomes a problem is when (a) someone tries to make their own "mental retcon" into something OFFICIAL (see Greg Jein's chart, for example) and overwrites something else that a lot of us already adopted and enjoy.

What also becomes a problem is (b) when someone starts claiming that their personal position is "the only right one."

Now, don't get me wrong. I'll argue as strongly as the next guy, as many of you are already well aware. But, I always try to couch my arguments in terms of "real science" or "practical justification" and that's how I see every other argument needing to be couched as well.

And I also think that "original intent" and "original presentation" must always take precedence over "later added materials."

So... if someone wants to argue that the Enterprise's warp drive is actually an albu... oh, whatever that guy's name is... you know, the proposed "real warp drive" concept... that sort of drive, hey, I'm all for that unless it contradicts, directly, on-screen evidence (which, as far as I can tell, is not the case). And it's fair for someone to prefer a "hull mounted reactor system" though I think that they need to be prepared to argue that, not in terms of "lines from one episode" so much as "why it makes more scientific and engineering sense to do it that way."

See, to me, it makes NO sense to have such insanely dangerous processes happening with a human being standing mere feet away from the reaction site. It makes sense to have it happening as far away from the inhabited spaces as possible.

One thing I really found fascinating about Enterprise (the series) was that they seemed to fall into this thought process... after all, in "The Catwalk," the engines got very, very, very hot... too hot to inhabit. And the nacelles were the most heavily-shielded portion of the ship.

That makes great sense... if the nacelles are where the reaction is occurring. It makes very, very little sense if the reaction is happening in the main hull, with people standing inches from the reactor. Wouldn't you expect the reactor to get a lot hotter than the field coils? It's virtually impossible to conclude otherwise, unless you revoke the fundamental laws of thermodynamics, isn't it?

Now by TNG times, we see people working inside the nacelles while the nacelles are powered up. So, clearly, by TNG times, this isn't a concern (and I'm guessing that the main core is almost entirely a cooling system, with a tiny fraction of its volume taken up by the reactor elements themselves!)

So... my argument re the 1701 is almost entirely based upon (a) original intent of the designer, and (b) practical scientific and engineering principles.

We see contradictory elements from TOS talking about the engines, of course, but in MY case, I tend to accept those which make proper scientific and technical sense, and to reject those which, to me, make less sense.

For me, the fun is trying to figure out how we can make the "nonsense" in Trek fit into a logical, practical, scientifically-sound "real world" expansion of the small amount of Trek we've actually seen on-screen.

But for anyone less inclined to think this way, your best option is to simply leave the topic alone... if trying to reconcile Trek into a cohesive whole (on whatever basis you use, and we all use somewhat different bases, I think!) reduced your enjoyment. I think that's what Patrick's point was, and I think CarbonCopy gets that now, right?
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Old October 13 2011, 09:44 PM   #172
Timo
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Re: TOS Nacelles

See, to me, it makes NO sense to have such insanely dangerous processes happening with a human being standing mere feet away from the reaction site. It makes sense to have it happening as far away from the inhabited spaces as possible.
That might be pennywise thinking, though. Perhaps the minimum safe distance if anything "happens" is fifty thousand kilometers and thus of no practical engineering concern? Perhaps there is no difference in received delta radiation between two meters and two astronomical units? Considering the nature and scope of the forces we're dealing with here, things like "radiation bulkheads" or "radiation suits" or "protective separation" may be invalid concepts altogether (and indeed we never hear of such things in dialogue, even if we may mistake some of the costuming for radiation-resistant gear).

Wouldn't you expect the reactor to get a lot hotter than the field coils?
Not really, if the coils have the property of creating a lot of waste heat while the reactor does not. Say, when you fire up a diesel engine to power a generator that powers an anti-aircraft searchlight, only the searchlight gets insanely hot from waste heat even though there's power being lost at each stage and the diesel engine features the greatest power output.

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Old October 13 2011, 11:13 PM   #173
Cary L. Brown
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Re: TOS Nacelles

But Timo, again, neither of your positions are in agreement with real scientific principles.
Timo wrote: View Post
See, to me, it makes NO sense to have such insanely dangerous processes happening with a human being standing mere feet away from the reaction site. It makes sense to have it happening as far away from the inhabited spaces as possible.
That might be pennywise thinking, though. Perhaps the minimum safe distance if anything "happens" is fifty thousand kilometers and thus of no practical engineering concern? Perhaps there is no difference in received delta radiation between two meters and two astronomical units? Considering the nature and scope of the forces we're dealing with here, things like "radiation bulkheads" or "radiation suits" or "protective separation" may be invalid concepts altogether (and indeed we never hear of such things in dialogue, even if we may mistake some of the costuming for radiation-resistant gear).
Basic scientific fact... take any energy form originating from a point, and measure the strength of that relative to the distance from the point of origin, and the strength is proportional to the square of the distance from the origination point.

(The following assumes a vacuum, of course, with nothing to absorb the energy)

The actual equation is
But 4 and Pi are both fixed values, of course.

The same amount of energy exists in the spherical "shell" at any distance from the point of origin, but the area of the shell is much, much larger as you move away.

Thus, the intensity (which is measured in energy per unit area) is calculated exactly according to that equation.

There are additional terms that get factored in if you're dealing with absorbtion, of course, and those are typically also first-order factors of r (not r^2), so you end up with quadratic equations.

You NEVER add energy (unless you have an additional source, that is, which is not what we're talking about here).

So... it is UTTER NONSENSE to claim that the energy at two meters and 2AU might be "essentially equal."

No matter what the original energy level emitted is, this would inherently mean that the energy level at 2AU is much, much less than that at 2 meters.

There are 1.495979e+011 meters in an AU. Square that, and you get 22,379,531,684,410,000,000,000.

So, given a "zero absorption" environment, ANY point energy field... radio, light, the pulse from a matter/antimatter reaction... ANYTHING... will be no more than 4.468e-23 of what it would be at two meters away if you are two astronomical units away. Add ANY form of absorption (hull plating, free hydrogen in the vacuum, etc) and this number will become even less.

This is not something subject to "special Trek rules," this is REAL SCIENCE, and Trek is based upon additions to real science (ie, it is "science fiction") rather than upon entirely nonsensical stuff (aka "fantasy"), isn't it?

And we know that, where Trek has the opportunity to show that it fits with real, known physics, it generally tries to do so.
Wouldn't you expect the reactor to get a lot hotter than the field coils?
Not really, if the coils have the property of creating a lot of waste heat while the reactor does not. Say, when you fire up a diesel engine to power a generator that powers an anti-aircraft searchlight, only the searchlight gets insanely hot from waste heat even though there's power being lost at each stage and the diesel engine features the greatest power output.
Again, this is something that does not work, when looked at in regards to real science, and in particular the fundamental laws of thermodynamics. I don't have time for a full dissertation on that here, and most folks won't want to read that right now (I've already given a small dissertation already, after all!). But for those interested, you can start off here...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Law_of_thermodynamics

In regards to your diesel engine idea... the combustion of the fuel results in heat. Heat results in expansion, which in turn results in mechanical movement (with some energy lost due to friction), which turns a generator (with some energy lost in heat form due to eddy currents and the like, and some due to simple resistance). The wires also result in energy loss due to the same issues, but in those case, primarily due to resistance issues. The filament in the lamp is also a resistance element, with the energy remaining from the generator passing through it and producing heat, and through that, incandescence (which results in light).

But the energy expended at the bulb is only a fraction of what is produced by the generator, and only a fraction of the heat energy at the internal combustion motor becomes electrical power in the first place.

Collect the waste heat from the generator, rather than "exhausting it" into the environment, and I'll guarantee you (having run these numbers myself on a few occasions... and ask anyone who works in internal-combustion design and they'll have run this HUNDREDS upon HUNDREDS of times, mind you!) that the heat energy produced at the motor is much greater than that produced at the lamp.

If you're measuring "temperature" as a measure of "heat energy," you're making a fatal error. These are not the same thing.

The reason that the filament gets hotter is because it is largely thermally isolated from the environment, while the internal combustion engine MAY not be quite that hot is because (a) the heat is not localized in a tiny filament, and (b) because the engine is designed to effectively reject heat energy into the environment, while the filament is not.

In space, nobody has a tailpipe... and there is no atmosphere to reject heat into anyway. All heat rejection is done through radiation.

Not surprisingly, the only potential heat-radiating features on the TOS ship are on or around the engines.

(a) the "mesh" at the ends of the impulse deck could be radiator elements for the impulse power subsystem.

(b) the grids on the interior nacelle pylons would appear to be radiator elements

(c) the intercoolers (and potentially the control reactor) seem to serve cooling functions

(d) POSSIBLE the end-cowling at the aft nacelle might be a radiator surface, though this is not entirely clear.

(On the TMP ship, you have radiator surfaces on the nacelles and on the pylons, again, and you might argue that the oddly-shaped geometric patterns atop the impulse engines might be some form of radiator panels.)

And you always put your heat rejection hardware as close as possible to the source of heat, again due to basic rules of thermodynamics... the closer you are to the source, the more effective the heat transfer is.

Last edited by Cary L. Brown; October 13 2011 at 11:39 PM. Reason: Expanded into a dissertation anyway... sigh...
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Old October 13 2011, 11:27 PM   #174
CorporalCaptain
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Re: TOS Nacelles

To a point I agree, with the caveats mentioned. I don't need to take things literally like the Diana Muldaur look-alikes or the curved corridors, those are both good examples.

I'm even willing to seriously consider the idea that what we saw in 1701 main engineering really resides in the secondary, engineering hull, and that there's nothing like that in the saucer section at all. However, I don't think that's the only way to resolve the issues. Furthermore, I think that there can be mutually exclusive deck plans of the Enterprise that make sense; different attempts to "get it right" will make different compromises, and the different ways will each have their pluses and minuses.

What I was strictly objecting to is the idea that what is pretty clearly reasonable from the perspective of TOS (regardless of whether or not TAS is included), the idea that these conclusions must necessarily be discarded because they don't fit into a pattern that matches up with the technology arc suggested by ENT and TNG. To do so seems to toss TOS out the window for no legitimate reason. Now, it might be nice if one could come up with something that squared all those circles, but I personally don't see it happening. The fault for this, if you can even call it a fault, pretty clearly falls on the shoulders of ENT. But that's not something that necessarily needs to be addressed either here or by me.

Now, if you want an in-universe explanation for why ENT and TNG engine rooms seem so much alike whereas TOS is an oddball, maybe it's something like the following.

Maybe the limits of the NX-01 design were reached. In order to go to warp 6 and beyond new techniques were tried. Then, with the Enterprise refit, a new breakthrough solved the problems with the NX-01 engines that prevented it from going to warp 6+, that allowed warp 7+, then Starfleet adopted a new-improved version of the NX-01 drive that was refined for the next century from TMP to TNG.

If one takes this tack, then TOS engineering can be a straight oddball of the pattern; it doesn't need to mesh precisely in the lineage of the other designs, because it isn't in that lineage. It's an offshoot; a dead-end that operated unreliably in the range above warp 6.

As to what the limitation was in the NX-01 design, I don't know: the oscillation overthruster kept getting out of sync with the flux capacitor until they could design a proper interoscillator. Or something. And they didn't figure out how to do that until the 1701 refit. Until they had that ironed out, the engines just had to grow in inelegant ways.
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Old October 14 2011, 12:01 AM   #175
Cary L. Brown
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Re: TOS Nacelles

I have no issues whatsoever with your perspective, and (like you) I tend to say that, if TOS and some other series disagree on some point, TOS (having been there first) must be given priority. I wholeheartedly agree with your point on "tweaking TOS to fit in with later series" an have given the same argument as you more than once.

About the NX-01, well.. . this ship was never really intended to be launched in the form is eventually flew in, and it was an EXPERIMENTAL vessel. Maybe the Vulcans were right, and it was launched prematurely?

In any case, one thing that was quite clear was that the matter/antimatter reactor on the ship, as launched, had been designed, developed, and tested on the ground.

Now, most of you have seen the "Season 5 Reconstruction" of the NX-01. This never saw on-screen time, but this was intended to happen for season 5, and we've at least gotten to see it in the most recent calendar (as well as on Doug Drexler's site).

FYI, for anyone who is NOT familiar with this...

http://youtu.be/gbl_FtBoRdA

(That's a fan-made video, using an online game engine, but it shows what the ship looks like "in action" which is why I like it.)

You can also see a much prettier version, direct from Doug Drexler, near the beginning of this clip, here...

http://drexfiles.wordpress.com/2011/...tlactive-duty/

and a diagram..

http://drexfiles.wordpress.com/2010/...refit-diagram/

Key to the description of what was done to the ship was that the existing powerplant was dramatically underpowered (and had been overtaxed repeatedly during the first four seasons) so an entirely new warp drive system was installed.

Look closely at the nacelles and you'll notice that they, too, are different. While the housings remain largely unchanged, the internals have been altered (for one thing, the outer faces no longer have exposed coils or intercoolers, for example).

So... what else may have changed? Maybe what's on the "NX-01.5" is a system with main power generation in-nacelle? We'll never know, will we?
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Old October 14 2011, 03:29 AM   #176
blssdwlf
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Re: TOS Nacelles

Cary L. Brown wrote: View Post
Basic scientific fact... take any energy form originating from a point, and measure the strength of that relative to the distance from the point of origin, and the strength is proportional to the square of the distance from the origination point.
...
So... it is UTTER NONSENSE to claim that the energy at two meters and 2AU might be "essentially equal."
Well depends on the type of energy, doesn't it? There is the Soliton Wave from "New Ground" that doesn't follow that rule.

Another way to look at blending Real Science with Trek Science is to think of it from an in-universe POV. If in-universe there is observed evidence that (for example) Antimatter is much more powerful than what Real Science says it is, then the Real Science rules are superseded by Trek rules.

All, IMHO

Last edited by blssdwlf; October 14 2011 at 03:52 AM.
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Old October 14 2011, 09:25 AM   #177
Timo
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Re: TOS Nacelles

Basic scientific fact... take any energy form originating from a point, and measure the strength of that relative to the distance from the point of origin, and the strength is proportional to the square of the distance from the origination point.
Which is utter bullshit, because "any energy" may easily take forms that do not obey the inverse square law or any similar law. Say, energy may be expelled in the form of individual cannonballs, which do not expand into a volume; those won't lose energy at a distance at all.

There's nothing to say that "delta rays" would actually be spreading out into a volume and dispersing like a shower of water or ball-bearings or alpha particles, despite them originating from a point.

this is REAL SCIENCE
Not really. It's just picking a formula and applying it outside its region of validity. Which is probably the definition of anti-science.

If you're measuring "temperature" as a measure of "heat energy," you're making a fatal error. These are not the same thing.
For the purposes of this argument, temperature is the thing that matters. "Heat energy" is redundant anyway - heat is energy. But only the forms that make you feel hot are relevant to the nacelles-are-hot argument. And the diesel engine doesn't scorch you, while the searchlight does, because the latter ejects more of its unusable energies (or exergies, or whatever terminology you want to use) in a manner that causes an inconvenient local temperature increase.

So, let's say the warp core in the middle of the ship pumps out more heat than the end user nacelles outboard. Nothing says the nacelles wouldn't be hotter - which countermands your original deductions or assumptions.

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Old October 14 2011, 03:11 PM   #178
Cary L. Brown
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Re: TOS Nacelles

Timo wrote: View Post
Basic scientific fact... take any energy form originating from a point, and measure the strength of that relative to the distance from the point of origin, and the strength is proportional to the square of the distance from the origination point.
Which is utter bullshit, because "any energy" may easily take forms that do not obey the inverse square law or any similar law. Say, energy may be expelled in the form of individual cannonballs, which do not expand into a volume; those won't lose energy at a distance at all.
Are you serious?

You know that this law applies to, say, a neutron burst. Each and every neutron is effectively a little "canonball," and if you assume no medium through which the neutrons are passing, each neutron theoretically retains its initial kinetic energy indefinitely.

Yet the neutron field does follow the inverse square law.

Again, this is real science. And, for the most part, Trek does try to remain consistent with real science, though (as in the case of things like "soliton waves") they do occasionally come up with "perpetual motion machines" (things which violate all known laws of science, in other words), and hence are "magic."
There's nothing to say that "delta rays" would actually be spreading out into a volume and dispersing like a shower of water or ball-bearings or alpha particles, despite them originating from a point.
Yes, there is. Even a laser beam is subject to dispersion. The dispersion followed by a laser beam is a modified version of the inverse square law (the laser "dot" size is a tiny percentage of the spherical surface, but the laser still spreads out by this same law... hence a pinprick laser at the surface of the earth ends up a football-field-sized area if it hits the surface of the moon from the Earth's surface, for example).

Nothing in real science fails to follow this basic principle. "Magic"... the stuff of fantasy, not reality... might not follow this.

But as I said before, I hold that where real science CAN apply to "Treknology," it does, an we only use "pseudo-science" to fill in gaps where we have no real scientific knowledge.

So, a "soliton wave" may be utter nonsense, invented to make for a storytelling gimmick. But at least it doesn't contradict real, KNOWN science.

We know what comes from a matter/antimatter reaction, because this is real science. We've discussed the reaction-products re: this previously in this very forum, and that's what we're discussing now. So, are you claiming that there is some reaction product from a matter/antimatter reaction which does not follow the "inverse square" law?

If so, can you give us any "in-fiction" evidence to support that, at least?
this is REAL SCIENCE
Not really. It's just picking a formula and applying it outside its region of validity. Which is probably the definition of anti-science.
Absolutely not. I didn't "pick a formula." I used the correct formulae, in support of the correct theorum, which is used to describe fall-off over distance, which is EXACTLY THE TOPIC WE WERE DISCUSSING.

And it is not "outside it's region of validity." This theorum does apply to the concept of matter/antimatter reactions. If you were to toss together a gram of matter and a gram of antimatter so that both reacted fully, and you got a complete annihilation reaction, we would know just how much reaction energy was produced, by virtue of a known equation. And we would know the form that this energy would take, by virtue of real, known science. And we know that the energy density of output energy would vary by distance from that point of reaction, and that this would occur in agreement with the inverse square law as I explained it.

How, exactly, do you think that this is "outside of it's region of validity," then?
If you're measuring "temperature" as a measure of "heat energy," you're making a fatal error. These are not the same thing.
For the purposes of this argument, temperature is the thing that matters.
No, it's not. This is BASIC THERMODYNAMICS.

For the layman, you can think of "temperature" as merely being a measure of "heat energy per unit volume." This value varies on a material-by-material basis, since the same heat energy in a given volume of one material results in a different temperature than the same heat energy in an equal volume of a different material will... this material-specific value is most commonly known as the "specific heat" or "heat capacity" of the material, in fact. "Specific heat" actually means the amount of energy required to raise a unit mass (in the SI system, that's a kilogram) by a unit temperature (in SI, that's a degree kelvin... which is the same as a degree celcius except for where "zero" is taken).

Here's a good basic table to compare some specific heat values from, by the way:
http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/sp...ids-d_154.html

Pick any two materials and compare them. Figure out how many joules of heat energy are required to bring, say, a 1 kg block of bakelite from 0C to 100C, and how many joules are required to bring an identical mass of antimony from 0C to 100C.

And then look at what happens if each block of material then comes into contact with a 1 kg mass of water (specific heat of water at 100C is 4.2159 kJ/kg K... treat this as a constant value for the sake of this calculation for simplicity's sake) and reaches equilibrium. What is the end temperature of the "antimony and water system" and the end temperature of the "bakelite and water system?"

The math here is quite simple. It's the JOULES OF ENERGY which count, not the temperature, though. All that the "delta T" affects is the rate at which the energy transfers.

Now, from the standpoint of a human body, well... we're mostly water, and so we generally use the thermal constant value of water as our yardstick by which we measure everything else.

What this means is that we may have, say, a big block of steel at one temperature (say, 200 degrees F) and an identical block of some other material (let's say polystyrene) at 200F and put both, separately, into a volume of water. The polystyrene will result in a much smaller overall effect on the temperature of the volume of water than the steel will, because the thermal constant of the steel is much higher... more heat transfer is required for a given change in temperature.
"Heat energy" is redundant anyway - heat is energy.
It is not "redundant" because while all heat is energy, not all energy is heat.

Technically, the term we use when doing science is "enthalpy"... this is the synonym for "heat energy." But I chose not to use the term "enthalpy" because few people in the general population would have any clue what I was talking about where I to have used that term, while most normal folks (with a robust intellect, even if lacking this level of scientific training) will be able to grasp the concept of 'heat energy."

You do seem to "get" this based upon your next comment, so I have to assume you're just quibbling when you object to my terminology, however.
But only the forms that make you feel hot are relevant to the nacelles-are-hot argument. And the diesel engine doesn't scorch you, while the searchlight does, because the latter ejects more of its unusable energies (or exergies, or whatever terminology you want to use) in a manner that causes an inconvenient local temperature increase.
"Exergies?" I've never cared for this term, personally... energy is energy, and redefining a new term to describe energy based upon the direction it is flowing always bothered me. That's like saying that what flows through a hose in one direction is water, but if the water flows the other direction, it's no longer water.

In fact, in general, I tend to treat this as the "entropy" of the system (entropy meaning unusable, unrecoverable energy... "disorder in the system"), though this is a bit of a stretch of the definition of entropy in general.

So, the term "unusable energy" is much clearer, I would think.

The problem with your argument, above, is that you seem to be treating "a relatively small amount of heat energy forced into a small volume where it is retained due to insulation and a high local specific heat" as somehow being more significant than "much more heat energy, dispersed int a large volume where it can easily conduct and convect away and where there is a low specific heat."

This works when dealing with a diesel generator and a search light, true. But in a starship, which is a CLOSED SYSTEM, you don't have that "infinitely large heat sink" (for the sake of calculation) of an atmosphere which we have here on Earth. You have a small, finite volume, with a very low specific heat.

Imagine it this way. Have a "tether" spacecraft with the generator in a "pod" at one end of the tether, and with the spotlight in an identical pod at the other end of the tether. Imagine that you have electrical conduction along the tether but no thermal conduction, to make it simpler.

And, also to keep things simple, ignore any elimination of the heat through radiation.

In other words... all heat generated by the generator set is retained in the first pod, and all heat generated by the lamp is retained in the second pod. Eventually, the local heat generated by each will cause a temperature rise in its respective pod.

In which pod will the overall temperature increase more rapidly?
So, let's say the warp core in the middle of the ship pumps out more heat than the end user nacelles outboard. Nothing says the nacelles wouldn't be hotter - which countermands your original deductions or assumptions.
I hope, now, that you see that this statement is untrue. "Hotter" is only relevant when viewed in terms of "stored heat energy" which is related to the heat capacity of the material whose temperature you're measuring.

When you think of it that way... a nacelle has a much higher mass-density than the inhabitable volume of the ship, with the majority of what's in the nacelle being solid mass (metal and ceramic, I presume) and the majority of the volume in the hull being atmosphere. So, for the nacelles to get hot requires a LOT more energy to be added to the system, when compared to the same temperature rise occurring in the main hull of the vessel, doesn't it?

Last edited by Cary L. Brown; October 14 2011 at 03:26 PM.
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Old October 14 2011, 05:28 PM   #179
Captain Robert April
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Location: In selfless service to fandom, on the road to becoming a Star Trek trivia god...
Re: TOS Nacelles

Three words: Warp Core Coolant.
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Old October 14 2011, 06:36 PM   #180
Cary L. Brown
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Re: TOS Nacelles

Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
Three words: Warp Core Coolant.
But do you understand what coolant is? I mean, what it REALLY is? All it is, is a fluid material which has a relatively high specific heat, so that it can absorb a significant amount of heat for "relocation" to some other spot on the ship.

The fluid doesn't actually "cool" anything. It MOVES the heat, that's all.

As a general rule, the longer the "coolant run" is, the less efficient it is.

So... where are the locations from which the heat is being dissipated?

As I said before, we have cooling elements on the nacelle pylons, and on the nacelles themselves, and even potentialy on the saucer, but nothing on the secondary hull.

(Now, on the TNG ship, there are some "flower petal" panels, which Andrew Probert intended to be cargo doors, but which I treat as being some advanced form of radiator panels. But in TOS, they didn't even have that!)
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