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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Misc. Star Trek > Trek Tech

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

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Old July 5 2012, 06:03 AM   #1
Wingsley
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TMP docking port door mechanism

Regarding the docking port doors seen on the TMP Travel Pod vehicle:

If I understand how the door/airlock mechanism works, the doors on the Travel Pod slide into the mothership's docking port. Correct?

What happens in an emergency when the Travel Pod is not near a docking port? Can the pod doors be used as an independent airlock? I ask this because Spock's shuttle-warpsled arrangement seemed to have a similar docking mechanism. Such a deep-space vehicle would not go without an airlock.

How would that mechanism be used as an airlock? Without a mothership's docking port, there would be no frame to accept the opening doors of the smaller craft.

How could this work?
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Old July 5 2012, 07:37 AM   #2
T'Girl
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

The doors could likely still open and close without the pod (or shuttle) being attached to a receiving air lock. Enough of the doors would still be in the docking ring, for the ring to retain a grip on part of each door, they wouldn't go flying out into space. Of course you would have to depressurize the entire pod cabin first.

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Old July 5 2012, 09:04 AM   #3
Mytran
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

In the case of the inspection pod, that's true. The shuttlecraft however is large enough to fit a small airlock.
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Old July 5 2012, 03:59 PM   #4
SchwEnt
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

As I'm grasping for answers, I think...

Since we're talking about TMP docking port mechanism, I think about another new tech we also saw for the first time in TMP. The forcefield barrier, which allowed the hangar doors to be open and exposed the vast interior of the secondary hull to space.

That forcefield barrier which contained atmosphere yet allowed passage of materials and personnel thru to space.

So maybe... the travel pod has a smaller version of that installed in the docking collar ring? Where the doors could be opened to space yet still contain the travel pod atmosphere yet still permit people to exit and enter the pod?

I'm just guessing, I don't know.

Maybe the travel pod vehicle really was dependent upon standard Star Fleet docking ports and couldn't operate outside of those vessels/facilities. A very limited use and specially designed vehicle, not intended for use outside specific areas. It's not unheard of. There are modern day equivalent conveyances that work well in a certain area and function but are near-useless out in the open.
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Old July 5 2012, 04:29 PM   #5
Boris Skrbic
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

Andrew Probert made some comments at Drex Files.
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Old July 5 2012, 05:14 PM   #6
TIN_MAN
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

SchwEnt has an interesting idea; but I think in the case of the travel pod, there was a small hatch in the top (and maybe bottom too) that allowed access/exit in emergencies, of course one would need to don a space suit, which are presumably stored somewhere onboard?
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Old July 5 2012, 11:58 PM   #7
Wingsley
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

Boris wrote: View Post
Andrew Probert made some comments at Drex Files.
Thanks for the link. Great images and discussion there!
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Old July 6 2012, 01:47 AM   #8
blssdwlf
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

The TOS shuttle didn't have an airlock, IIRC. It might not be unusual for the TMP shuttle to lack an airlock as well.
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Old July 6 2012, 02:34 AM   #9
Wingsley
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

And therein lies the rub.

Spock's warpsled-propelled courier was obviously a deep space vehicle, albeit of limited range. (Like a TMP precursor to the DS9 Runabout?) It obviously offered Spock substantial capabilities, not the least of which was the ability to track down and intercept a wormhole-displaced Federation starship. And let's not forget about the little ship's demonstrated modular finesse.

IIRC, the shuttle module atop the warpsled was Probert's concept for a TMP shuttlecraft. Given that this vehicle is obviously loads more capable than its TOS ancestor just from what we got to see of it, why would we assume that its docking port would not offer basic airlock capability?
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Old July 6 2012, 04:14 PM   #10
SchwEnt
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

^^^ Tell me more. How do you see TMP shuttle being loads more capable than TOS shuttlecraft? (aside from the whole warp sled attachment, which is something else).

Spock's detached shuttle (as also seen in the hangar bay of the Enterprise) is Probert's design for a TMP shuttle. It has a lack of nacelles from its TOS predecessor and is fitted with a standard docking port and apparently some phaser bank emplacements.

But what else do we know that would make it much more advanced than TOS shuttlecraft?
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Old July 6 2012, 08:04 PM   #11
Wingsley
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

While the TMP Blueprints aren't canon, they do seem to suggest that the ship is better-equipped (the shuttle module on its own does have phaser canons). Of course, in this Memory Alpha article on the "long-range shuttle" there seems to be the suggestion that the TOS Class F may have been replaced by a newer, smaller-than-the-long-range-shuttle model.

This is where it gets a little confusing. Just as with TAS, there could conceivably be more than one type of starship-based shuttlecraft, and TMP showed us only one. But that one TMP model is capable of exterior docking with a starship (no indication a TOS model could ever do that), apparently capable of tracking down and intercepting a wormhole-displaced starship in interstellar space (somehow that would seem to me to be an impressive feat by TOS standards), and that this newer model was also armed. That begins to sound less like a TOS shuttle and more like a Runabout, doesn't it?

I do not have the blueprints in front of me, but the Cygnus X-1 blueprint of the Surak suggests that the shuttle module itself is 18.7 meters long with a maximum capacity of 14, loads more than the TOS Class F.
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Old July 6 2012, 09:49 PM   #12
blssdwlf
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

Well that would depend on where the TMP shuttle's capabilities end and the warp sled's capabilities begin. The TOS shuttle can be equipped in short notice with additional shields and science gear ("The Immunity Syndrome") and appears to have some limited FTL capability as it gave chase in "The Menagerie". Arming it doesn't seem out of the question.

The warp sled module appears to give the TMP shuttle a higher top end and longer endurance. It would be logical that a side-effect is the necessity to have better sensors to see further ahead. Since the E's displacement was in the general direction of intercepting V'ger and it didn't seem like it cost them too much time it does not appear that impressive for Spock to find them. They were probably within a few light-years of their flight path.

Back to the TOS vs TMP shuttle - if you take the warp sled module away the TMP shuttle doesn't appear to be any more advanced than the TOS one, IMHO.
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Old July 6 2012, 11:07 PM   #13
SchwEnt
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

That's what I was gonna say, as well. (Depending on one's own personal canon) TOS shuttles seemingly have warp capability. As mentioned, it was able to give chase to the Enterprise in "The Menagerie".

TMP shuttle (sans warpsled) may or may not have warp capability. IDK if the warpsled extends warp range or in fact enables warp speed altogether. TMP shuttle without warpsled has no nacelles, so I'd think maybe it doesn't have warp speed capability.

So would TMP shuttle be more capable than TOS shuttle? In terms of warp velocity? Or merely passenger capacity and armament, docking ring or no docking ring? Or maybe just different, no better or worse?
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Old July 6 2012, 11:15 PM   #14
B.J.
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

SchwEnt wrote: View Post
Spock's detached shuttle (as also seen in the hangar bay of the Enterprise)
Not quite. The shuttles were in a pre-production version of the matte painting of the shuttlebay, but the production version was devoid of any shuttles.
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Old July 6 2012, 11:38 PM   #15
Wingsley
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Re: TMP docking port door mechanism

I interpret the whole Surak shuttle-and-warpsled as a package deal. It's more modular than a TOS Class F shuttlecraft, possibly to provide greater mission-specific flexibility and storage. It is, after all, a bigger ship... not unlike a DS9 Runabout, at least in some respects...

Look at the Surak's nacelles. They, too, appear to have segments to them. I would expect the warpsled itself to detach into smaller pieces so that (1: it could be stored aboard a starship, quickly and efficiently, and (2: the segments can be disassembled and recycled/repurposed, possibly for smaller versions of the sled arrangement. So the Surak could be reconfigured to serve as different types of vehicles, depending on the mission profile. (We saw the TOS Class Fs in different interior configurations, so why not allow for flexibility in a courier-ship's exterior equipment as well?)

Clearly, from the TMP docking footage alone, it is safe to speculate on the Surak's size as being larger than that of the TOS Class F, hence suggesting superior capacities and facilities. Since Spock was the Vulcan ambassador's son, it would make sense that the courier Surak would be a superior V.I.P. vehicle anyway.

Back to what I was previously concerned with: the docking port. Given what I said above, I would at least hope that the Surak and other ships like her would offer airlock capability through that rear hatch.
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