PROBERT in need of a little help-

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by Probert, Jul 27, 2011.

  1. Probert

    Probert Starfleet Design Red Shirt

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    Yup, it's me again... This time I'm trying to get some questions answered about StarFleet "LifeBoats" or "EscapePods".

    The time and space? The battle of 'Wolf-359'.

    The question... what sort of lifeboats/pods would have been predominantly used during that battle?

    Once that's pretty well hashed out, how would they dock with a rescue ship? Seriously, I haven't had time to keep up with all that but I want to be accurate when I paint them into my 2013 SOTL calendar page... so I'm looking for information that will satisfy everyone when they see it (them)... I want them to be recognizable.

    Thanks, all, for any help on this.
    Andrew-
     
  2. Holdfast

    Holdfast Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Sounds like a very interesting project; I hope someone here has specific/verifiable information for you. I look forward to seeing the final painting in the calendar. Always good to see you in the TNG forum too. :techman:

    As a fan that doesn't really follow the technical canon side of things at all closely, on a personal note I think it would be fun if there was some aesthetic/design lineage with the only lifeboats I can recall seeing - the ones in First Contact from the E-E. A precursor variant of these would be good. I always assumed they'd be collected by tractor beam into the rescue ship shuttle bay (or if still under power from their thrusters, land under their own steam in the shuttle bay).

    As I say, that's just my gut feeling, and not based on any sort of verifiable canon answer! I'm sure others will be along with more suggestions soon. :)
     
  3. Kirks_Flying_Wig

    Kirks_Flying_Wig Commander Red Shirt

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    IIRC is there not an example of a TNG-era escape pod in the TNG Tech Manual? Much more cubic-shaped than the First Contact/Voyager type. I would imagine those small types would have been abundant in the Wolf 359 battlefield, maybe with a smattering of the newer ones that have been ejected from newer ships.

    Consider also the escape pod used by Sisko in "Emissary" that was attached to the Miranda-class Saratoga - no clear shot of the outside but I got the impression it resembled a shuttlepod with simple thrusters. Shuttles themselves could also have been used as lifeboats (cf. Star Trek 2009).

    In terms of how the shuttles are recovered by ships, Holdfast has already mentioned tractor beams and their own thruster power. Depending on how safe the battlefield was to enter afterwards (lots of debris drifting around), survivors may also have just been beamed onto ships en masse (consider Ezri's recovery of Worf in "Penumbra").

    The first part of Christopher L. Bennett's TNG novel The Buried Age describes the aftermath of the Battle of Maxia; weeks after the Stargazer has been abandoned, the surviving crewmembers have linked their escape pods to conserve resources.

    I imagine the survivors of Wolf 359 would have done that sort of thing almost immediately as they might not know how long they'd be bobbing around for waiting for rescue.
     
  4. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Hello Mr. Probert,

    I was one of the contributors to the Wolf 359 "research project" from a decade ago at Bernd Schneider's Ex-Astris-Scientia site: http://www.ex-astris-scientia.org/articles/wolf359.htm

    Here's my expertise:

    1. The only canon escape pod we ever saw during the battle was for the U.S.S. Saratoga, the one Sisko uses to escape. It seemed to resemble a large shuttlecraft, and seemed to launch from the ship's shuttlebays as well. Presumably they are meant to land in another ship's shuttlebay.

    2. Many of the actual kitbashed models seen in BoBW Pt. II were based on the Enterprise-D, which had ASRVs. Close inspection of the Kyushu, Chekov, Buran, Ahwahnee and Melbourne models show the same type of hatches that the Ent-D had, so presumably those ships carried ASRV's too. I believe the TNG Tech Manual states that the pods can be docked together to form large clusters. As for docking with another ship, I would guess that tractor-beaming them into the shuttlebay would be the most efficient means of bringing them aboard.

    Hope this helps!
     
  5. The Entire Bee Movie But

    The Entire Bee Movie But Badass Admiral

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    I'm sorry, I don't have better screencaps than the ones from TrekCore at hand.

    The shape is super blurry.

    Just to illustrate where I remember seeing TNG-era escape pods used, in this case specifically during the battle of Wolf 359.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Star Trek Mechanics and the Star Trek Fact Files has photos of the pod filming model and diagrams, respectively. Both pics can be found at Bernd's site.

    Oh, and Mr. Probert? If the creative mood strikes you when you make your painting, I for one would love to see a design for the Rigel Class U.S.S. Tolstoy (The script used "U.S.S. Chekov" but was changed to "Tolstoy" in post-production...so a Tolstoy model was never built).
     
  7. zar

    zar Captain Captain

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    You can see the triangular outlines on the E, but on the D they are beige rectangles.

    I think the only other times there is a clear external shot of Starfleet escape pods is when the Valiant and Defiant are destroyed ("Valiant" and "The Changing Face of Evil"). Those ones were hexagonal.
     
  8. Probert

    Probert Starfleet Design Red Shirt

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    Wow, lots of responses already... thanks.

    Was the battle of Wolf-359 featured in DS-9 as well?... since I didn't watch that show. If it were me (painting for myself) I would only use the lifeboats from the Galaxy Class / TNG-era ships; the boxy ones. But, again, I wanna cover all the bases.

    Thanks again,
    Andrew-
     
  9. C.E. Evans

    C.E. Evans Admiral Admiral

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    I think most lifeboats would have been fairly simplistic in shape--a basic cube with a hatch/docking port, a small viewport, some maneuvering jets (RCS thrusters), and one primary thruster that was used primarily for escaping the ship.

    I believe it was in Rick and Mike's TNG Technical Manual that it was suggested that lifeboats could be linked together in a way not too much unlike the way the old Soyuz and Apollo capsules could, so modularity would probably be very important. Rescue starships might be able to tow linked escape pods in a chain/cluster or simply beam dozens of 'em directly into their various cargo and shuttle bays if they're big enough to hold them.
     
  10. Gep Malakai

    Gep Malakai Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It was seen in the pilot episode as part of Sisko's backstory. (Both he and his wife were involved in the battle; his wife got killed.)

    I was always under the impression that the squares on the Ent-D were hatches covering the real pods, since that's how the USS Voyager handled it:

    [​IMG]

    And here's the images:

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  11. KNH

    KNH Commander Red Shirt

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    Presumably, this is as good of a shot as we have for Galaxy-Class lifeboats:
    [​IMG]

    The TNG Technical Manual also mentions that, in accordance with the example above, they're meant to interlock and form clusters to increase efficiency and survival chances.

    As for your question, yes - the battle of Wolf 359 was a key point of the DS9 premiere; Sisko participated and lost his wife in it, leading to some animosity towards Picard.
     
  12. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yes, that's correct; they're just the hatches. In the TNG Companion, Larry Nemecek stated that Greg Jein's purposely-built-with-battle-damage ship models had open lifeboat hatches, but I've yet to see anything like that in photos of the two known models he built.

    There were only four ships featured in the battle in DS9's pilot: The Miranda class Saratoga mentioned before, the Ambassador class Yamaguchi, the Nebula class Bellerophon, and the Excelsior class Melbourne (changed from a Nebula class study model). The Bellerophon would have had ASRVs like the Ent-D, but who knows what type of pods the Ambassador or Excelsior classes had?
     
  13. zar

    zar Captain Captain

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    Well don't forget the TNG-era (and beyond) still included older ships, like that Excelsior that kept showing up, and there was definitely a Constitution and a Miranda (Sisko's ship) at Wolf 359.
     
  14. GeorgeKirk

    GeorgeKirk Commodore Commodore

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    I wonder, would any of the ships that fought at Wolf 359 be using the TOS Movie-era lifeboats shown in Mr. Scott's Guide To The Enterprise? It seems there was at least 1 Constitution-class ship in that batter, after all.
     
  15. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Not to be needlessly nitpicky, but there's no direct evidence that a Connie was at Wolf 359. All we see is part of a saucer in one scene, and part of a secondary hull in another scene. There's no indication that they were part of the same ship, or that the ship those hulls came from was a Constitution (i.e. another class of ship could have had an identical secondary hull, etc.)

    Now speaking real-world, that's exactly what they were, because that saucer and secondary hull was from the destroyed Enterprise from STIII. The saucer was used again for the U.S.S. Olympia, but again that doesn't mean the Olympia was a Constitution either.
     
  16. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Probably Starfleet relies on a range of survival devices that may include "almost-shuttlecraft" with a high degree of independence and maneuverability, "dumb" pods that merely float in space until recovered by a suitably equipped starship, and "even dumber" survival cocoons that are just flimsy balloons containing an air recycling device and one to ten survivors.

    The bigger and better survival devices might need to be housed in a shuttlebay, although probably not the same way shuttles are housed: the pod that saved Sisko could have been hanging from the ceiling of the shuttlebay, for example, until called to perform its one-off duty, thereby not unduly hindering normal shuttle operations. Simpler devices might need less maintenance and could be stored near-indefinitely in their designated, isolated berths in seldom-visited parts of the ship.

    What is housed behind those hatches on TNG era ships is probably not set in stone: some ships may have a full set of the latest model of survival pod, while others may carry a mixture of older and newer pods there, and some pod types may be much smaller than the hatch they're hiding under. The Voyager pods clearly defy stereotype by being small hexagons beneath "standard" large square hatches. So I think any portrayal of Wolf 359 evacuation would be fully justified in featuring a broad range of devices and designs.

    OTOH, how many ships really had the chance to launch survival devices? The Saratoga was caught in a tractor beam for a couple of minutes, but when Sisko launched out of that doomed ship, half a dozen starships outside were burning wrecks already. The Borg might only have allowed a select few ships to survive long enough for their crews to attempt evacuation.

    And if their goal indeed was to improve the quality of life of their victims, they'd be unlikely to miss the opportunity to capture all the escape pods they could, and convert the occupants to a blessed existence as Borg Drones.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  17. Tiberius

    Tiberius Commodore Commodore

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    I'd imagine the same sort as the ones we saw in Year of Hell. Older ships may have more primitive versions, but I'd imagine that the lifeboats would be pretty standardised.

    Tractor them into shuttlebays?
     
  18. Arpy

    Arpy Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'd imagine that there are as many different types of escape pods as there are classes of ship. Some more similar than others (i.e. those from a Constitution and Miranda more similar than those from a Galaxy and Nebula) but that there'd be variations with every class.

    My only request is to try to give the escape pods something new and interesting rather than trying to make them smaller versions of shuttles. I loved the E-C's vertical impulse engine, the Romulan drydock, and the captain's yacht's launchbay. Seeing creative new stuff like that (stuff you don't often find on trek-art sites overflowing with derivative ships and uniforms) I feel like the show's still on and I'm a kid again looking at the future just a TV or computer screen away.
     
  19. Probert

    Probert Starfleet Design Red Shirt

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    Thank you. Continuing in that same M.O., this painting will depict rescue & clean-up operations that would have taken place after the battle, featuring a never-before-seen StarFleet Salvage Tug.

    The idea of developing a Deep Space Tug (like today's US Navy Ocean-going Tugs) actually came from a fan two years ago and I've been playing with it ever since. This idea was intriguing because it would challenge me to design a new ship & place it (them) in a setting with lots of other stuff to look at.

    As for the Life Boats,... my original intention for the square design, first seen on the Galaxy Class, was to create a space-efficient shape that would fit nicely between compartments (rooms). They would be placed in groups along corridors, each with it's own door. Upon entering the door.... (I'm trying to remember now) there would be four (maybe six) closely-stacked contoured couches on either side, into which escapees would climb. The external 'cover' would blow off and the boat would be launched away. At a pre-determined distance, the boat would expand into it's final rectilinear shape, telescoping the cabin to a more comfortable size for it's occupants.

    Since no script called for their usage during the first season, no more thought was given to them. Then after I left the show, their final development was up for grabs. As it turned out, lifeboat shapes became un-standardized (illogical to my mind), as subsequent ships came to fruition.

    Thank you all for the really great input,
    Andrew-
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2011
  20. Saquist

    Saquist Commodore

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    To Mr. Probert.

    Be warned that the Triangular Life Boats have been featured on ships which Mike Okuda designated by registry as much Older than the Galaxy Class such as the Akira. So could use any of them and these are the 3 types we've seen


    Voyager, Defiant and Galaxy. (These hide under the hull and pop out through a flip open hatch.)
    http://www.shipschematics.net/startrek/images/federation/escapepod_voyager.jpg

    Sovereign Class Enterprise and Akira: (These are exposed on the hull and slide out of their holes)
    http://www.cygnus-x1.net/links/lcars/blueprints/sovereign-class-starship-ncc-1701-e-sheet-17.jpg

    Miranda: Reliant and Saratoga (These were launched straignt from the Shuttle bay at high speed)
    http://i13.photobucket.com/albums/a284/uss_voyager/saratoga-escapepod.gif



    Procedure for Retrival:
    1. Transport direct to shuttle bay
    2. Pods and Shuttle are lined up to the back of ship by use of tractor beams. The External Beams transfer control of the escape pod to an internal beam stationed within the shuttle Bay which sets the craft gently on the deck. Usually The internal tractor beam in the bay takes over before the craft passes through the shuttle bay force-field.


    Tip:
    The Best Shuttle Bays to use for an interior shot is the Main Saucer Shuttle Bay of the Galaxy, Nebula and the Sovereign Class ship. Big and Roomy and we've not seen much of the inside of them so artist license needed. We've also have never seen the inner shuttle bays of the Space Dock either (up close)

    Tip:
    For a Tug. Treat the Image like an SAR mission (Search and Rescue) These missions are usually of the escort variety to protect the Tug.

    Tip:
    Wolf 359 (if that is the battle we're seeing the after math of) is a red drawf star with an orangish hue