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

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Old October 12 2012, 10:31 PM   #1
Robert Comsol
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Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

I couldn't help but wonder about the purpose of odd shaped frames in the corridors on the TOS Enterprise (e.g. near the transporter room in front of the lift) like this http://tos.trekcore.com/hd/albums/1x...ithinhd095.jpg

While they add a futuristic look to otherwise boring rectangular corridors they must be rather impractical for people moving through them.

Then I remembered "Corbomite Maneuver" and "Balance of Terror" where there were injuries because of radiation burns.

Could these be panels that change their color once their ship's section has been exposed to higher levels of radiation so personnel working in such section will immediately "see" that they have been exposed to higher radiation and consult sickbay?

Bob
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Old October 12 2012, 10:58 PM   #2
comsol
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

I've always liked the interpretation that they are bulkheads that contain heavier duty isolation doors (never seen in use in TOS) that would be used to separate the various internal compartments of the Enterprise.
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Old October 12 2012, 11:24 PM   #3
CorporalCaptain
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

comsol wrote: View Post
I've always liked the interpretation that they are bulkheads that contain heavier duty isolation doors (never seen in use in TOS) that would be used to separate the various internal compartments of the Enterprise.
That would be my first guess too. The A shape is distinctive, and in an emergency there really is no question, if you are looking in its direction, where it is.
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Old October 13 2012, 06:23 AM   #4
Albertese
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

Exactly my guess also. I've even sketched up some pretty nifty ideas about how the doors operate on a common hinge and close down-and-in (imagine enormous scissors) to close off a section in a hurry. The scissors mechanism explains why the passage is A framed shaped.

No I've never actually scanned that sketch so I can't really show it to you.

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Old October 13 2012, 10:57 AM   #5
Robert Comsol
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

comsol wrote: View Post
"I've always liked the interpretation that they are bulkheads that contain heavier duty isolation doors (never seen in use in TOS) that would be used to separate the various internal compartments of the Enterprise."
(Hi, cousin) I am unable to see the need for the frame to be an extra bulkhead if some of the standard doors, like for the hangar deck, already serve this kind of purpose: http://tos.trekcore.com/hd/albums/2x...romehd0792.jpg

And in this shot from "Ultimate Computer" we see a red door (which is obviously not a turbolift) that seems to separate one part of the corridor that leads to the Engineering Section from another: http://tos.trekcore.com/hd/albums/2x...uterhd0119.jpg

Bob
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Old October 13 2012, 03:09 PM   #6
blssdwlf
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

Good catch about the pressure doors for the hangar deck.

A couple of possibilities:
  • The A frame is part of the "emergency bulkhead" that closes and is stronger than the pressure doors. The idea being from your first screen capture reference where that A frame is usually the other entry into the room that has the pressure doors. The A frame snaps shut if the pressure doors fail.
  • Or the A frame is part of a load-bearing bulkhead and the A shape is a compromise cut into it.
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Old October 13 2012, 05:08 PM   #7
Timo
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

We reach, brothers. In Trek, artificial gravity can generally be relied upon to work even if everything else fails. And scissors doors that swing together on gravity alone are an excellent way to create pressure security in power loss conditions.

There would no doubt be lots of pressure-holding doors elsewhere, too - mostly of an inferior type that needs to move horizontally under power in order to create the seal. But it would make sense for a hierarchy of compartmentalization doors to exist, with these scissors representing the high end, and with the flimsy, no-threshold, throw-through doors familiar from TNG representing the absolute lowest end.

Then again, we should remember that inconveniently angled structural supports are present in various Enterprise sets, such as the "The Cage" briefing room, the "Doomsday Machine" corridor-leading-to-shuttle-hangar and so forth. So the A shape could indeed derive from structural necessity of some sort.

But I fail to see the advantages of the shape: a simple rectangular hole between the two supposed angled supports would do. If it's too narrow, then a tombstone-shaped hole would be practical, only curving, angling or narrowing at the very top, but otherwise having vertical sides. Humans are not shaped to take advantage of the flare at the bottom.

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Old October 13 2012, 11:00 PM   #8
sojourner
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

In real life you'd want the shape of the door openings to be standardized. It helps when moving cargo/designing components to fit through said doorways.
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Old October 14 2012, 12:41 AM   #9
scotpens
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

Timo wrote: View Post
. . . But I fail to see the advantages of the shape: a simple rectangular hole between the two supposed angled supports would do. If it's too narrow, then a tombstone-shaped hole would be practical, only curving, angling or narrowing at the very top, but otherwise having vertical sides. Humans are not shaped to take advantage of the flare at the bottom.
Now the Krel, on the other hand . . .



Rectangular doorways = mundane. Odd-shaped doorways = futuristic and/or alien.

(Oops, I forgot we're talking in-universe, not real life!)
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Old October 14 2012, 07:24 AM   #10
Albertese
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

I actually thought of this example exactly, but didn't bother to post it.

Oh, those magnificent Krell.

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Old October 14 2012, 04:09 PM   #11
Timo
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

Ditto, actually.

...They seemed to be fat or well-tentacled at the lower third mark, though, not at floor level. The Enterprise doors would be more suited for the Daleks.

Now the intriguing thing is why this door shape was used on the Delta Vega cracking plant!

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Old October 14 2012, 06:50 PM   #12
scotpens
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

Veering a bit off-topic, but why didn't the Krell just build simple rectangular doorways wide enough to accommodate their bodies? We humans don't make doorways shaped like the silhouettes on public toilets.

Maybe the strange shape was a religious thing -- the Krell equivalent of a mezuzah.
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Old October 14 2012, 07:24 PM   #13
Albertese
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

Timo wrote: View Post
Ditto, actually.

...They seemed to be fat or well-tentacled at the lower third mark, though, not at floor level. The Enterprise doors would be more suited for the Daleks.
Don't forget their bulky craniums!

Now the intriguing thing is why this door shape was used on the Delta Vega cracking plant!

Timo Saloniemi
hmmm... Perhaps that station is far older than we had first assumed.... More Krell wonders...


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Old October 14 2012, 08:06 PM   #14
Timo
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

Well, fanfic/RPG material does embrace the idea of the old Vegan Tyranny (courtesy of James Blish recycling this entity from his own fiction into the novelization of "Tomorrow is Yesterday")...

No doubt the Vegans had their own names for all these interesting places they once controlled, just like they had a different name for their own species. But the Federation archaeologists would have to settle for Alpha Vega, Beta Vega, Gamma Vega and Delta Vega. Naturally, none of these outpost ruins would be located anywhere near Vega itself, where no planets currently exist (obviously because of the big war that killed all the Krell and removed evidence of their inner holdings), and Alpha Vega would be better known as Altair IV, while Gamma Vega would be Exo III, and so forth.

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Old October 15 2012, 01:57 AM   #15
Albertese
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Re: Purpose of A-shaped corridor panels in TOS?

Awesome! I love that! My only nit to pick is that the Krell succumbed to their giant Id Machine, not to a war. They were too mighty and benevolent for that sort of thing.

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