Do turbolifts have any sense?

Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by Faria, May 22, 2013.

  1. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    But if the turboshaft layout is similar to what is shown in the above pictures (and those are actually a very good match to the actual sets, and to the way they shoot people going from place to place using those sets), then walking usually is not an option. The turboshafts get in the way and prevent direct walking beyond a few "blocks" or at most a quarter-segment of the circular corridors.

    There in turn we run into the problem that a call to battlestations is the one time when the system could plausibly fail on you, catastrophically preventing the ship from achieving battlestations when half the personnel are stuck in jammed turbolifts...

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  2. solariabsg25

    solariabsg25 Captain Captain

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    Which is unfortunately exactly the same problem should a normal lift system jam. Turbolifts will (hopefully) get people to their stations in a matter of minutes. How long would it take someone on say a modern Nuclear Carrier, to get from for example the mess-hall to engineering going via ladders and corridors?

    In all of Trek, turbolift failures are shown to be relatively rare, off the top of my head I can only recall TWOK (heavy battle damage), Contagion (computer virus) and Disaster (heavy damage from a cosmic string), I think IIRC also Year of Hell, but once again the Voyager in that episode was overall a mess. In many of those cases, staircases and corridors would have been just as vulnerable as a lift system (either turbo or conventional elevator).

    Starfleet probably decided that the low risk of failure was outweighed by the system's overall usefulness.
     
  3. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    @ solariabsg25

    There was apparently also turbo lift failure below Deck 3 in "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield", forcing Lokai & Bele to make their way down to Deck 5 (at least) by using (unseen) stairways.

    I have to concur with Timo. A call to battlestations should restrict the use of turbo lifts to specialists that need longer ways to travel. Probably the crew quarters are arranged in such a fashion that people can reach their duty stations within the minute.

    And during the call to abandon the ship it would also seem wise that all crew members know how to get to their designated evacuation transporters without the need of turbo lifts. After all, these might be among the first things to fail during an emergency.

    Bob
     
  4. solariabsg25

    solariabsg25 Captain Captain

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    Thanks for that. Still, it would put turbolift failures well below the level of the transporter, or even shields. Probably a less than minimal risk in the eyes of Starfleet.

    Red Alert probably does have a "pecking-order" for use of turbolifts, something that would be similar even if they used elevators and ladders. Captain and Main bridge officers, Engineering staff, Tactical/Security, Medical probably being the priority. Then there would be formation of Damage-Control parties at various locations, something probably most crew are trained for.

    Maybe there are various damage-control points, where crew not required elsewhere are ordered to assemble at the closest one to their current location, rather than take up valuable time traveling from one end of the ship to the other.

    In the case of evacuation, they would definately need to have routes that not only avoided turbolifts, but also provided several alternatives in case of hull breaches, decompression, fires etc. Generations shows us just such an example, where Geordi is forced to use the Jefferies Tubes to make his way to the saucer section. In First Contact, the entire remaining crew are able to evacuate the Enterprise without having to fight their way through Borg-controlled decks.
     
  5. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    And this, I'd think, would be a "failure" engineered by the Cheronites - or more accurately by Bele, to hinder Lokai's attempt at escaping - as they had amply demonstrated their ability to jam and pervert the starship's systems.

    The tri-ladders of the TOS set probably help with this a lot; going up or down one deck should help clear obstacles such as horizontal turboshafts or local breaches easily enough.

    The tri-ladders pose the problem of not having a visible means of being sealed either vertically or horizontally, though. Although there could well be horizontal isolation doors just above and below the sections we see, since the between-decks height on the TOS ship might be considerable. And of course there could be air-containing forcefields, as this technology exists in TOS not long after the TOS events, but those probably don't make for a good "fall-back" safety system as they require at least some power.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  6. mos6507

    mos6507 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    All interiors have "negative space" taken up by corridors, stairs, etc... It's simply not possible to pack every square inch of a ship with more useful stuff.
     
  7. Mytran

    Mytran Commodore Commodore

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    Maybe not, but the entry "doorways" could easily be sealed by standard pocket doors that are simply left open all the time (and so appear to be not there). Closing off just the entry points would have the advantage of making the whole tube still usable even if certain decks along the ladder were decompressed.
     
  8. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    This brings up the question of whether those pocket doors are pressure-proof. We see standard cabin doors supposedly act as a barrier against the dikironium cloud in "Obsession", but physically these are flimsy structures, rather easily forced by Khan, and lacking in anything that would resemble an airtight threshold.

    In TNG, the interior doors are clearly just "cardboard", brushing against carpeting, stopping nothing, and blown out of their hinges by the impact of a body thrown about. In ENT, there's lots of heavy metal there to suggest the exact opposite. Where does TOS fit in between these two?

    We see those curious A-frames on various corridor locations aboard Kirk's ship. Scissoring pressure doors that swing in place under the failure-proof gravitic pull of the floor? The rest of the interior between such doors might be a single pressure vessel, any doors therein serving only "decorative" purposes.

    It's a bit worrisome, then, that the turbolift doors appear to be much the same as the cabin doors. Is the entire shaft network open to ambient air / breach vacuum?

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  9. Albertese

    Albertese Commodore Commodore

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    In may own take on the Enterprise deck plans, turboshafts run through the various hull pressure compartments and there are emergency doors which seal off the tubes if that compartment is compromised. This does mean that the length of tube in the compromised compartment is not accessible. But, that's okay, because I've made sure that every section of the ship is accessible by means of stairs, ladders, and regular hallways.

    BTW, in my arrangement, the tri-ladders are only those ladderways which interconnect hull pressure compartments. Since they are in their own tubes, they are easily sealed off in the event of a breach.

    --Alex
     
  10. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    The tri-ladder could just be surrounded by a simple revolving mechanism (similar to the revolving wall closet in the cabins). In case of compartment decompression the corresponding deck segment tube just rotates to seal off the area, so you could use the tri-ladder as long as there are compartments unaffected by decompression.

    Bob
     
  11. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    That's the elegant option I'd prefer!

    So... What about those red grilles that are so commonly used as interior elements? Vital load-bearing structures made lightweight and transparent by the honeycombing? Or just psychologically important dividers of space?

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  12. Mytran

    Mytran Commodore Commodore

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    As we're now talking doors, I feel I ought to point out that TOS was the only incarnation of Trek (including the movies) that depicted two sets of doors on the turbolifts. It's a nice example of attention to realistic detail that had disappeared by even 1979.
     
  13. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Would you believe I never actually noticed that until DS9 showed us turbolifts with no interior doors?:rommie:
     
  14. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    Cardassian design, perhaps instead of doors there is some sort of forcefield.
     
  15. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Commodore Commodore

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    They appear to be used in the engine room and also in the dilithium energizer room as some type of shield as well as a physical divider. Perhaps the grid pattern blocks out the specific frequency range of radiation that the engine and power systems puts out?
     
  16. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    I had the same thoughts. Probably some kind of universally efficient structure and material, hence we saw it in Yonada's engine room, too, in "For the World Is Hollow..". There it did seem to have the quality of a shield protecting the console's operator (hence my inspiration for that thought).

    Bob
     
  17. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Apparently, there's nothing at all - no inner doors, not even inner walls. Just railings to hold on to. Which is a bit dangerous, and apparently how Cardassians like it.

    Well, okay, there's a bit of wall there, behind the backs of the users. It's even a plot point in "Crossfire" where a falling lift can be stopped by Odo thrusting his arms against this wall segment and bulging it out against the shaft walls.

    I guess the back wall is handy when the lift is traveling sideways - it prevents the occupants from being blown off the platform by the onrushing air. But it's quite clear that there is air in the shafts normally, just like there is air in the TNG or TOS-movie shafts every time our heroes venture into those (but those are special emergencies).

    Timo Saloniemi
     

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