Andrew Probert's ST:TMP Dry Dock to be Orbited by 2020!

Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by GodThingFormerly, Nov 27, 2008.

  1. GodThingFormerly

    GodThingFormerly A Different Kind of Asshole

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    Well, not exactly, but I am rather struck by the aesthetic and operational similarities between Andrew's ST:TMP dry dock structure and this real-world proposal from 2004 by USAF Research Laboratory engineer James Michael Snead for a "Space Logistics Base" to assemble and support CisLunar transfer vehicles.

    [​IMG]

    Snead's paper detailing the above concept can be downloaded as a PDF from the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics website.

    Cosmic thoughts, ladies? [​IMG]

    TGT
     
  2. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Vaporware? Or just a paper tiger?

    It's too bad they never built this sort of capacity into the ISS. That would have given the design longevity and validity beyond the absolute face-saving minimum. It would also have evicted the microgravity experimenters from ISS, so that they could have had a more meaningful platform free from the disruptive presence of astronauts and their vehicles.

    Something common to this plan and the early Freedom "orbital harbors" is the use of actual physical hangars for thermal and micrometeoroid protection. An argument in favor of the ILM space mushroom? :devil:

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  3. SonicRanger

    SonicRanger Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Eh, there are only very vague similarities to me... like being a structure in space that supports spacecraft.

    But given your, um, unnatural affection for Probert, I'm not surprised that your love-struck eyes see more similarities than I do, TGT. :p
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2008
  4. Captain Robert April

    Captain Robert April Vice Admiral Admiral

    That was uncalled for.
     
  5. SonicRanger

    SonicRanger Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Oh, come on. Feel free to notify a mod if you really think I was flaming him or something. The facts are that (1) our friend TGT, whom I often complement, is known for being extremely fond of the works of Probert and Sternbach and that (2) he's much more of an insult comic than I am -- what's good for the goose is good for the gander. Or today, I guess you could say that what's good for the hen is good for the tom.
     
  6. Santaman

    Santaman Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Damnit! I was expecting to see the big mushroom starbase. :p;)
     
  7. JuanBolio

    JuanBolio Admiral Admiral

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    'bout time.
     
  8. Jimmy_C

    Jimmy_C Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    That's really cool! I wonder if they would really build it, though. Seems more like a "I wish we had this" thing.
     
  9. Herkimer Jitty

    Herkimer Jitty Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Don't worry, if they do decide to build it, the project'll be cut down to size so much that they'll end up sending only a single reaction control thruster up.
     
  10. Psion

    Psion Commodore Commodore

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    HUH?

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    You only see vague similarities? Those big panel lights ... the framework construction area ... the fact that it's open on the front, back, and bottom ... the staging and crew area on top? If this had shown up in Star Trek: Enterprise, it would have been thought of as an homage to Probert's design.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. GodThingFormerly

    GodThingFormerly A Different Kind of Asshole

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    A "blue sky" proposal presented at an AIAA meeting which - like pretty much every other interesting proposal - was subsequently forgotten.

    My pesos are on the ISS being reduced to an unmanned free-flyer for microgravity experimentation by 2012, so the less said about it the better.

    You're a dead man! :mad:

    *ahem*

    If you would care to peruse the Probert illustration I linked to, the upper segment of the dry dock has a travelpod docking ring which implies a pressurized habitat, and the large rectangular inset appears - at least to me - to be an outer airlock door for moving relatively large assemblies in and out of what could very well be a radiation/micrometeoroid/atomic oxygen/insolation-free "clean room" environment used for the final assembly or servicing of unusually sensitive space vehicle subsystems.

    Oh, Great Probert, Tell Us Your Intentions! [​IMG]

    A structure composed of pressurized segments below which are suspended lights to keep constant luminosity on the serviced spacecraft as the orbiting platform moves in and out of Earth's shadow cone? The similarities are absolutely uncanny (as Psion just demonstrated).

    Well, that can I say? I'm just waiting for my big juicy kiss. ;)

    TGT
     
  12. Blip

    Blip Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I like it. Now build it, dammit!
     
  13. Jimmy_C

    Jimmy_C Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Maybe not for an earth-orbiting station, but if there are resources that can be mined on the Moon, then I can see this being used in lunar orbit. I mean, how many ships and space stations would be built using this thing before it becomes more cost effective than the "send up pieces and dock them together" method used for Mir and the beginning of the ISS? If you are building 10-20, maybe. But 2-3 stations and 1 Mars spaceship? I don't know if that would work well. And long long until we need to replace this station? 10 years?

    The Moon's less gravity would make it more cost effective for launching raw materials for fabrication there, and you wouldn't have to deal with Lunar dust messing with anything. Of course, you would have to deal with solar flair, the solar wind, and other radiation, though.
     
  14. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    You mean, sharing a thread with TGT?

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  15. Probert

    Probert Starfleet Design Red Shirt

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    It's quite a complement to see one's conceptual thinking somewhat validated by a 'real-world' proposal. Even if this concept is a fluke (meaning the engineer did NOT see TMP) of parallel development, both concepts are based on logical thinking of what functions a structure like this would be built to address.

    Both concepts propose the following: A structure to provide a well-lighted area for spacecraft in need of inspections, repairs, resupply, and maybe "refitting". The structure would logically provide a hanger or two capable of holding an atmosphere, for numerous reasons, and also include a sizable crew compartment containing living, working, warehousing, and recreational spaces.

    So, except for my structure's ability to reconfigure for different-sized ships and keep those ships centered in the structure with the use of tractor beams, they do, in function, seem pretty similar.

    Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

    Andrew-
     
  16. GodThingFormerly

    GodThingFormerly A Different Kind of Asshole

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    ^ Thank you for the response, Andrew. :) If I may ask, was an actual "roof" designed for ST:TMP's dry dock miniature or did Richard Taylor and/or Douglas Trumbull ask you to leave the internal framework exposed so it could be more easily suspended from the ceiling of the motion-control stage?

    TGT
     
  17. Probert

    Probert Starfleet Design Red Shirt

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    I drew it,... they built it. The people at 'Magicam' decided how it would be best supportable, considering how fragile the components were in the real (film) world of a one-g environment. As I recall, the top was left open to cool the lighting components and, yes, help suspend it. Besides, no high camera angles were envisioned so no top was necessary.

    Andrew-
     
  18. Tallguy

    Tallguy Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Thanks as always, Andrew. Is there any place where these drawings (or pics of the top of the model) have been published?

    The other question I always had about the drydock is other than supporting a lot of lights and looking wonderously cool, what does it do?
     
  19. GodThingFormerly

    GodThingFormerly A Different Kind of Asshole

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    Ah! I would love to see an illustration or photograph of the dry dock's intended upper surface on ProbertDesigns.com if and when you find the time. May I ask if you recall whether Magicam also built miniatures of the additional "clip-on" habitat modules featured in this sketch?

    [​IMG]

    Regarding your original triangular-truss dry dock concept (the miniature of which you surmised would have collapsed under its own weight on the mo-con stage), is this the speculative real-world fabrication mechanism you had in mind when designing it?

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    How ironic that now, when CGI technology can render delicate, filigreed microgravity structures just as easily as it can a lead pipe, we get overbuilt docks that look far more like something to be found in a Tulsa car wrecking yard than LEO/MEO.

    TGT
     
  20. Herkimer Jitty

    Herkimer Jitty Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It's so it can withstand the full force of that movie's stupidity.
     

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