How many transporter rooms on TOS Enterprise?

Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by Robert Comsol, Nov 7, 2012.

  1. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    I'm currently trying to figure out how many different variations of the transporter room we've seen in TOS:

    Transporter Room # 1 appears to be the old one they used on the Pike Enterprise in "The Cage". Opposite to the door is a star chart with the picture of a galaxy (probably our milky way). It appears to be the same one as in "Where No Man Has Gone Before" (though no ladder steps between the door and the transport platform) which also has the star chart with the star clusters vis-a-vis the one with the galaxy.

    Transporter Room # 2 appears to be the one from the first season which has the star chart with the star clusters. Most of the time there are two interceding white lines running across the picture (flat screen display that shows the current position of the Enterprise where the lines cross?). In "Dagger of the Mind" there's the engineering display behind the transporter console (upgrade or wall display that is usually covered?).
    If I'm not mistaken there's a funny moment at the end of "Doomsday Machine" where Kirk beams finally back aboard the Enterprise and looks disorientated for a moment as he realizes they used transporter # 2 to bring him back ("From this one I need to turn right to the nearest turbolift...").

    Transporter Room # 3 appears to be the one from "Tomorrow Is Yesterday" which has a food / landing party gear dispenser / elevator. In "This Side of Paradise" we see two different transporter rooms. The one where Kirk and Spock are fighting doesn't have the star chart, it's probably transporter # 3.

    Transporter Room # 4 appears to be the one from Season Two on. It appears to be the one with the additional monitoring console behind the transporter console.

    Is that a basic summary or am I missing additional variations (I do not consider different positioning of the transporter console as a variation as I noticed in one episode that it changes its position several times while remaining in what appears to be the same transporter room. Maybe the console has a rotating ability)?

    Bob
     
  2. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Rotating or generally moveable consoles seem to be in use elsewhere in the ship as well; makes sense to have them be "wireless" and capable of being pushed aside if something really big is to be moved in or out. Of course, the doorway puts a limit on that, but perhaps the room has a ceiling utility hatch, such as is implied for the Stargate gateroom even if never quite shown? Or then at least is expected to serve as a temporary storage space for items beamed aboard but not yet beamed to their ultimate storage space.

    I'd argue the "Dagger of the Mind" transporter is a separate entity not only by design, but also by virtue of being somewhere down in the engineering hull. After all, the only partially insane van Gelder seems to be making his way up from that facility towards the bridge, with Deck 14 along the route. Plus, this is a rare all-cargo transport operation, so possibly associated with a special room connected to cargo or supply holds. (Perhaps personnel transporters have the starscape for purely aesthetic reasons, covering a circuit board identical to this one, while cargo has no sense of aesthetics?)

    I'm not sure if I want to believe in the symmetrical arrangement of four saucer rooms postulated by FJ, but at least a rotationally symmetrical arrangement of two saucer rooms (with the starboard room aft of the transverse corridor, the port one forward of it) would seem to be supported. And in any case, the idea of "the transporter room" indicating the existence of just one would seem to be insupportable...

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  3. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    I concur but the engineering deck plans I'm currently finalizing suggest the cargo transporter not to be lower than Deck 14 (one deck lower we're running out of space). I'd say it's the same one as the one in "The Enemy Within" ("gathering specimen") were the engineering panel was added within the year before "Dagger of the Mind".

    I've done an extensive study of the Season One transporters and the star chart seems to be somewhat inconclusive:

    The Cage & Where No Man Has Gone Before: cluster star chart between door and transporter platform, galaxy chart next to transporter console.

    Corbomite Maneuver & Mudd's Women: cluster star chart next to transporter console, no lines whatsoever on it

    The Enemy Within & The Man Trap & The Naked Time: cluster star chart, one horizontal white line, one vertical black line

    Starting with "Charlie X" all transporter rooms have the cluster star chart with two white lines and the black one.

    The transporter room in "Charlie X" is close to a turbolift (same with "This Side of Paradise" in the scene with the crew queue).

    The one in "Dagger of the Mind" has the unique engineering panel in the back.

    The (other) transporter room in "Tomorrow is Yesterday" and "This Side of Paradise" (Spock and Kirk fighting) has the yellow wall food / landing party gear dispenser but not the star chart.

    My whole point is that each transporter room has to have unique features allowing distinction of a crew member just having beamed back on board ("Which transporter room am I in?").

    On deck 14 I have the cargo transporter at the port side bow while the other one with the turbolift ("Charlie X", "This Side of Paradise" and suggested by movement in "Tomorrow Is Yesterday" and "Doomsday Machine" is at the starboard side stern.

    The one from "Where No Man Has Gone Before" is at the port side bow on Deck 10 (suggested by "The Changeling" as they're trying to get Nomad ASAP to the nearest transporter room without using a turbolift close by!). I think this is also the one (now slightly changed) from "The Naked Time" as it has this unique decontamination feature. Since there is engineering personnel active on Deck 10 wearing radiation protection suits (WNM) I'd lke to think that at the end of their duty shifts they use this transporter for decontamination of their gear. ;)

    I believe we are looking at a minimum of four transporters as suggested by the producers in The Making of Star Trek and TAS. Of course these should be dispersed over the ship as otherwise you'd have longer queues than just the one seen in "This Side of Paradise". :D

    Bob
     
  4. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Sounds like an excellent idea. Incidentally, Shane Johnson, channeling Andy Probert, places the cargo transporters of the refitted ship on the second-lowest possible deck as well - Deck 19 at the floor level of the giant cargo hold. I'm not sure about your deck numbering and layout scheme, though...

    Why would the decontamination system in "Naked Now" be unique? It rather seems that the situation was fairly unique: our landing party discovered a reason to believe they had been contaminated, namely, something had resulted in the deaths of the people below and might be speculated to have been a contaminant. And they had some confidence that the contamination had not yet led to an infection, as they wore (partially) protective gear.

    In episodes like "Enemy Within", danger from the contamination is not suspected; a change of clothes is the apparent standard way to deal with soiled coveralls. And in most episodes involving a landing party stumbling onto an environment riddled with an obvious disease or poison, lack of protective clothing in turn means the decontamination procedure would be insufficient. Apparently, and thankfully, the TOS decon system is different from the later TNG biofilter that routinely deals with (known) diseases and contaminants that might have been digested or otherwise absorbed into the body already.

    I'm not sure of the virtues of dispersing the transporter rooms. "Enemy Within" teaches us the system has extremely centralized resources. And while "Doomsday Machine" involves transporter evacuation, "This Side of Paradise" suggests such a procedure is indeed time-consuming and impractical; avoidance of queues doesn't seem to be high on Starfleet's list of priorities.

    On the idea of identifiable transporter rooms, what we witness seems awfully half-baked for the application. Surely outright signs saying "Transporter Room 3" or, say, color-coded consoles would be preferable to subtle differences in decor? A clustered transporter room arrangement would make identification fairly irrelevant anyway: no matter which room you use to beam aboard, you are going to exit into a corridor where you can easily spot the briefing room, the sickbay, and perhaps things like a toilet, a depository for rock samples, a holding cell, and an arms closet - things you might need soon after beaming up. Distribution of those assets, or of the transporter rooms, would complicate post-mission procedures...

    Did we ever really learn what the door opposite the transporter room doors leads into? Is a mirrored transporter room ruled out?

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  5. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Commodore Commodore

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    "The Cage" transporter room has an A frame visible when you look out and it seems to be a narrower corridor than the one seen where Kirk exits the transporter room in "WNMHGB". They're probably different locations.
     
  6. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Not exactly. Scotty is again quite a drama queen stating that it would take at least a week to repair the circuits and then suddenly comes up with the idea of somehow using the impulse engines to power the transporter (well, in "Mudd's Women" battery power seemed sufficient).

    I just remember that in "Day of the Dove" the main door to this holding area / briefing room is opposite of the transporter room set. If you take the original studio set into account, a mirrored transporter room is ruled out, as it would stick out of the wall where the ladder is.

    Interestingly, a transporter room was behind this studio set wall (the one with the multipurpose, semi-transparent wall panel) in WNMHGB but this was only the different pilot episode corridor and an open space opposite to it...

    Bob
     
  7. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Commodore Commodore

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    According to Scotty, the "transport unit ioniser" was damaged. His jury-rigged solution was to use the impulse engines to help with the "velocity balance" that the ioniser apparently does. I don't think it was strictly a power issue but a feature of the Warp (and Impulse) engines that helped with what I'm guessing is accounting for velocity differences between two transporter locations. Perhaps the ship dumps the extra velocity into the engines for extra energy and withdraws power to accelerate the transportee's molecules to the right velocity at the destination...
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2012
  8. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Thanx. I had forgotten about the second transporter scene in "The Cage". If the transporter room set is the same in both pilots, it would appear that (in real life) it is not necessarily at the location we see in WNMHGB but maybe behind the blue door we see at the far end of the WNMHGB corridor?

    However, this would make the entire studio set rather long and probably too big to accomodate it at the stage where they shot it. Darn, I really wish we had set blueprints of both pilot episodes / films.

    Bob
     
  9. Just a Bill

    Just a Bill Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    Not only that, but it appears it would also overlap the pocket door just to the right of that ladder alcove (the door that's generally the entrance to the briefing/mess/rec room), and come so close to the corridor wall itself as to be impractical for set construction without some foreshortening.

    If, as I suspect, we've probably seen somebody walk past that ladder and pocket door on their way to the transporter room at some point, then the only way to tweak this to work would be to move the position of the entrance to this hypothetical transporter room closer to the A-frame at the end of the short, straight corridor.

    Perhaps the best canon argument against two transporter rooms across the hall from each other would be that in "This Side of Paradise" we should have seen two queues of crewmen in the corridor, right?

    [​IMG]

    Unrelatedly, it would appear that the reason the transport console moved around so much was that it probably needed to be gotten out of the way every time they wanted to shoot a turbolift scene at the lower end of the curved corridor.

    -Bill
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2013
  10. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Nice and inspirational illustration, I really do like it! :techman:

    Your observation is impeccable and this transporter room apparently has no 'twin' on the opposite side of the corridor (I presume it's the same transporter room seen in "Charlie X" and "Elaan of Troyius" as it seems to be the only one with a red turbo lift at the end of this transporter room corridor. Alas, the strict turbo lift movement in "Elaan" - first half vertical, second half horizontal - tells me that this one has to be in the saucer hull and accordingly I removed it from my revised engineering deck plan drafts).

    However, in "Charlie X" we see that the ladder booth near Janice's cabin has been sealed. If one were to move the opposite transporter room further "up" the (briefing room) door might become a transporter mechanism access door. Of course, this will create a problem / gap with the transporter room corridor. :(

    Thus far I've only been able to see a turbolift ("in" the transporter room set) in "Amok Time", "Wolf in the Fold" and "The Ultimate Computer" (I think by Season Three they noticed it's an extra hazzle and relocated the turbolift back to the end of the circular corridor/s).

    But possibly it had given given birth to a multitude of different transporter room arrangements, most noticably one with a rectangular shape and one with an angular wall protruding from the corridor side (not to mention the various flat screens hanging next to the monitor console and the "Spock viewer", being there one episode and not being there the next one).

    It should be interesting with how many transporter rooms we'll end up with. Some (e.g. flat screens) could be rationalized by modifications / changes.

    Bob
     
  11. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    It should be pointed out that the idea of "mirroring" as such would still allow for another transporter room across the corridor - if we don't treat it as a set reuse, but as a true reversing of every single detail. That is, the putative other room would be the mirror image of the existing set in plan, and the back wall detail would be selected from among those set variants that would not necessarily protrude.

    This would not provide us with an identity for a known set variant as such. However, it would provide just that by implication: the mirror image of a putative corresponding room on the opposite (port?) side of the ship would in that case be a double mirror, and would thus have the same plan as the existing set. So at least two slightly different transporter rooms would now plausibly exist simultaneously, in a ship that would remain laterally symmetric. (That is, if lateral symmetry is found desirable...)

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  12. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Commodore Commodore

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    I don't know if this was mentioned also, but I think the transporter room is taller than your typical 10' room. That might factor into what is placed above the transporter room...
     
  13. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    I thought I had already visualized your idea (see post # 72): http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=195496&page=5

    Well, I definitely found the symmetry to be desirable. :D

    Bob
     
  14. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Hmm... Doesn't that one have asymmetric (that is, rotated rather than mirror-flipped) rooms, too?

    I could see many arguments for having symmetry in really big and important pieces of machinery, and the transporters could be among those - especially if two are always paired to a single pattern buffer thingamabob, as in the TNG Tech Manual, and the overall machinery in fact is quite massive. Asymmetry in such big things could be argued to be visible to the outside; to unbalance the ship in center-of-gravity terms; or even to make the concept of concentric curved corridors a bit futile when the circular layout is disrupted on one side by the asymmetry already.

    But a bit of asymmetry also gives character to the design... And the sets never were built to be symmetric anyway.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  15. Just a Bill

    Just a Bill Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    A mirrored or "flipped" transporter room definitely fits, and has even more space for back-end variation than the canonical layout (due to the entrance being a bit further from the curved corridor). It interferes with the implied outer corridor beyond the A-frame, but then so does the canonical transporter room; so that's a wash, I think.

    [​IMG]

    The problem I have with this, though, is that we never saw a transporter in this configuration. We saw plenty of variations, which makes for an easy justification of multiple transporter rooms on board, but (IIRC) they were always "right-hand" transporters. The real reason we saw multiple transporter rooms and multiple engine rooms that were all oriented the same way, of course, was budget and soundstage limitations — but there is also an in-universe utility argument.

    Let's pretend for a moment that there are three redundant bridges, with the two backups arranged to port and starboard. We would never expect the architect to flip one of these so that the turbolift was to starboard, the science station to port, and the navigation and helm positions exchanged. Nor would we expect everything in the even-numbered science labs to be laid out opposite from the odd-numbered ones. Nothing is gained (and something is lost) when you force operators to switch between opposing configurations just because a duty roster changed or a section is down for maintenance.

    And we have to consider not only operators but also users (which are sometimes civilians). It might be disconcerting on some conscious or subconscious level for crew to beam up and never quite know whether they're going to go right or left off the platform. Having your visual expectations jarred when you're in the middle of one of the most unnatural processes known to man is probably not advisable. There is some degree of both comfort and efficiency, subtle though they may be, in knowing that you can walk into any mess hall on the ship and you always turn to your right to go to the food dispensers.

    As a youth, I discovered something interesting about my brain when I once put my trombone together "left-handed." If I didn't pay very close attention, when I needed to move the slide out my brain wanted to move it in. Neurologically speaking, mirroring is not always as simple as "left is the new right." How many Americans have caused accidents while driving in Britain, even though they knew full well they needed to drive on the left?

    I think there is value is designing a ship so that when crewman x performs function y, console z is always on the far right, and the hamberfratz disambiguation actuator is always the third rocker switch down from the top of the second switch panel. If the transporter room fills with smoke or the Snorgphlembian ambassador shoots stinging foam in your eyes, you instinctively know you always run to the left to escape the room. When you have to replace the scorched cover on the heisenberg compensator cavity, you don't have to worry about requisitioning the wrong one ("sorry, I should've ordered HCC504/236-R, my bad"). If a phaser coil starts to overload, you reflexively head right to get to the emergency cutoff console — because it's always to the right, whether you're in the port, starboard, forward, or aft phaser control room.

    And (possibly most important of all in an era where you don't just replicate up everything you need) the ship's replacement-parts inventory doesn't have to stock twice as much of everything to support all the right and left configurations.

    That's my story, anyway. :)
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2013
  16. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Makes good overall sense, really. But the subtle variations in the sets with time are actually pretty damning in terms of the standardized parts argument: it must be hellishly difficult to cope with a wall that is at a 23 degree angle with its corner companion one day, but at 28.5 degrees the next! :)

    I'm not quite convinced that the location of the doorway would be a concern in this respect, psychologically, operationally or technologically. And the control console gives the appearance of being a rather generic, even modular and moveable, and ultimately "non-chiral" piece of equipment; flipping left and right would not appear necessary for its successful operation even if everything else in the room is flipped. (One wouldn't, say, need to number the pads counterclockwise in a "flipped" room if they are numbered clockwise in the set we see.)

    Ultimately, I think I'll vote against the "two rooms flanking the corridor" model after all, on basis of most things being equal but only a single queue indeed being witnessed in "This Side"... Although of course we could make the point that the crew was not only abandoning the ship but also shutting it down to prevent the possibility of re-boarding, and might have started out by having the transporter chiefs shut down their respective rooms but for one.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  17. Just a Bill

    Just a Bill Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    I wouldn't think subtle differences in wall angle are really "canonical" any more than coffee stains on Spock's tunic or shoe polish on the carpet from the previous three takes of the fight scene are canonical. Some on-screen information has to be filtered out as "TV production noise" that doesn't count as in-universe; it wouldn't be there if they had a practical/cost-effective way to erase the heel marks/afford more costumes/enforce precise continuity on the placement of movable walls.

    Otherwise, we could see minor blemishes or other recurring visual cues in the set and have to conclude that Kirk, Janice, and Uhura all live in the same quarters! ("Come and knock on our door....")

    -Bill
     
  18. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    :lol: That's a good one! I'd like to think that the scene in "The Doomsday-Machine" when Kirk has finally gotten back to the Enterprise reveals a moment of hesitation as if Kirk tries to figure out (after all the previous problems with the transporter) in which transporter room of the ship he's actually rematerialized.

    And there's of course the question of mass production of transporter (room) modules during the era of TOS. Probably a complicated device it appears reasonable to have one design to fit all Starfleet vessels that would also help to ease maintenance and repair efforts by the engineering personnel.

    According to The Making of Star Trek there were supposedly many different kinds of transporter rooms aboard the ship but partially because of budget reasons we only saw one model (with the exception of small transporters like the one on space station K-7 to tell viewers they were not aboard the Enterprise).

    These budget restrictions disappeared with TAS, yet, I don't remember ever having seen an animated transporter room that was supposedly different from the 'real' counterparts in TOS (though TAS established the Enterprise to have at least four transporter rooms).

    Though I agree that little production glitches shouldn't be taken too seriously (one of the aims of my blueprinting project), I equally don't like the overused rationalization that everything is different because of an upgrade and that applies to a number of transporter rooms seen in the series.

    According to "Assignment: Earth" sickbay ("Amok Time" suggests it rather to be on Deck 5 than Deck 7!) is above one transporter room which is above "security". Following the movement of Bele and Lokai in "Let That Be..." would also suggest a transporter room not much lower than Deck 5 or 6.

    The opening scene in "Journey to Babel" (one of the strongest indications for the studio set being used for parallel corridors, IMHO) sees Kirk picking up the call from the bridge near "Computer Statistics" and next passes a sign with a direction marker saying "Transporter Section" (on Deck 5 !?).

    (Sometimes, I'd like to be able to read what these signs say and sometimes I don't ;))

    The only transporter rooms I remember this moment that do accurately match the actual studio set are the ones from "Tomorrow Is Yesterday" (Christopher trying to force Kyle to beam him down) and "Day of the Dove" (Kirk and landing party traveling to their posts).

    Bob
     
  19. Mytran

    Mytran Commodore Commodore

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    The Transporter Room in LTBYLB is different to every other one seen, in that the wall adjacent to the door (on your right as you enter) sweeps forward at a very sharp angle, instead of the usual 90 degrees. Add to that that we only see the front two pads, and I'd suggest that what we are seeing is a smaller, auxiliary room instead of the usual one(s).

    Perhaps this is the Transporter Room that is used when saucer separation occurs? Those impulse engines are not in the same league as M/AM reactors, a small T-Room is probably all they can handle!
     
  20. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    One could also argue for the opposite, sort of: that walls observed at funny angles bespeak of the significant capacity of the transporters.

    Supposedly, these machines are a key element in starship logistics. The six-platform stage is capable of handling major pieces of equipment, in terms of dimensions, and the actual teleportation machinery doesn't seem to suffer from bulk or mass limitations, either. But the doorway to the room is quite limiting! How are the logistics handled beyond the initial beam-in?

    Perhaps the back wall is a moveable partition, and can fold up accordion style to reveal a cargo elevator system beyond... Exactly like the actual set walls can!

    Indeed, perhaps all the wall elements aboard the ship are a closer match to their studio plywood alter egos than we give credit for. The outer skin may well be the structural strongback of the ship (c.f. the way the engine pylons seem to attach without major internal structures that would be visible inside the landing bay/hangar), and the interiors could be rearranged with fairly limited effort.

    The wall segments need not be flimsy, though. Absent modern forcefield technology, perhaps the way to limit hull breach damage is to fold the nearest wall panels out to block the corridor?

    Timo Saloniemi