Ship to ship combat in various ST movies

Discussion in 'Star Trek Movies I-X' started by warpusher, Aug 15, 2014.

  1. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    ...But the Mutara Nebula is obviously not a reflection nebula. (Say, it's got plenty of internal illumination!)

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  2. BK613

    BK613 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2008
    Location:
    BK613
    Agree but the one in Nemesis might be (with the science fiction proviso that we can see it close up.) Mutara could be a newly formed planetary nebula (based on Regula's proximity to Earth) would still need to be SF-ish to have the demonstrated properties.
     
  3. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    I guess the scifi setting actually helps us out - many a dense mini-nebula could be the remnant of an intense space battle, say...

    Or even a literal burp, not of a star but of an actual lifeform with a digestive system.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  4. Ithekro

    Ithekro Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2012
    Location:
    Republic of California
    If the Star Trek VI era photon torpedoes are anything like the Archer era photonic torpedoes, than they can easily scale the damage on those things. Anywhere from being able to shave off a layer of paint on a building to vaporizing the city block the building is in. Or something like that.

    And since the Federation torpedoes seem to be based on Klingon torpedoes, having the Klingons equipped with Federation torpedoes shouldn't be all that much of an issues aside from some signiature reading. Chang should have been able to have his crew set those things up to do just a much damage as he wanted, but also could aim to exactly were they needed to disable the gravity on the battlecruiser, which on assumes was by disabling the power systems, since the ship drifts out of control with its lights flickering until they get power restored (and all the bodies and blood hit the floor). Followed by Change bringing the battlecruiser around and arming torpedoes to attack Enterprise.

    The Bird of Prey in Star Trek III took out a Merchantmen with disruptors, and vaporized USS Grisson with a lucky torpedo hit to the engines. Must have hit the antimatter storage tanks or something to get an instant warp core breach-like effect of that scale. Its one shot at USS Enterprise didn't do a lot fo damage, but was enough to disable to automation center on the unshielded cruiser. Normally that sort of damage wouldn't mean much of anything as the crew would then manually aim the phaser banks and load the torpedo tubes, and could pass along orders to engineering for speed and anything. Because Enterprise was entirely wired into the computer to relay commands from the bridge, cutting that would kill the ship (at least until the five guys on the ship could get to the manuel stations to use them, and that would taekke too much time
     
  5. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    I doubt the two are even of the same caliber, let alone compatible in other ways. And since the hits are the only thing that can be offered as proof of Federation guilt (the exact trajectory has to be faked), the warhead signature better be utterly accurate in order to be believable.

    If Chang were to get hold of a standard Starfleet warhead, he could no doubt set the yield as desired. But Cartwright wouldn't want to give him those, and we have no indication the two sides would actually be capable of reproducing each other's equipment.

    Such precision sounds a bit suspicious, really. Being able to cleanly knock out the enemy's power is one thing the warships would both be designed to achieve, and be designed to be immune to; i.e. it would be one of the hardest things to do to an enemy vessel.

    To achieve the precision effect, Chang could have ordered one of his men to pull a key circuit breaker after the hits...

    Agreed. Heck, the location at the bottom of the science vessel's ventral pod even corresponds to the "Hero Worship" graphic for the location of the main powerplant...

    In the fight against the Enterprise, as well as in ST5, those green torpedoes cause "electric shorting" and collapsing of key systems without doing significant physical damage. Perhaps the Klingon gunner's misfortune was to short out some innocent but important part of the antimatter containment system?

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  6. Ithekro

    Ithekro Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2012
    Location:
    Republic of California
    Considering how close Kronos One and Enterprise were, and the escort nature of the positioning, being able to setup for a precision shot would probably be easy. Especially of Chang parked his battlecruiser is such a way to give Enterprise an easy shot at the engineering sections.

    Considering that these are both older designs, it might be expected that two experianced commanders would know the weaknesses of the Constitution and D7 respectively...with the shields down of course.
     
  7. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    It is a bit weird that "Kirk" could fire at the underbelly of the Klingon vessel; all the establishing shots showed the two ships at more or less the same horizontal level.

    I guess Starfleet would choose, and Klingons would understand and expect, a formation where the escorting ship is pointing her main armament at the ship under escort, i.e. the Enterprise trailing on Kronos One. So lining up a shot in general wouldn't take that much effort. But the ventral hits are unusual nevertheless, as elsewhere it appears to be Starfleet doctrine to "hold moral high ground" with a high-positioned ship, and Klingon doctrine to "skulk in the depths for a cowardly hit" with a low-positioned one. Except of course when the Klingons want to loom ominously.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  8. Marsden

    Marsden Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2013
    Location:
    Will be Celebrating Spocktoberfest this year!
    That's one thing I always thought was weird, why was the Enterprise behind the Klingon? I thought they would be on each other's flank. Isn't following the visiting dignitary kind of like escorting someone with a gun at their back? If the Klingon was behind or to the side, this could not have happened. Was this Chang and Valkris's meddling to have this formation?
     
  9. Ithekro

    Ithekro Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2012
    Location:
    Republic of California
    Well Chang seems to have parked the ship there relative to Enterprise. They did swoop over Enterprise to that position it seems.
     
  10. warpusher

    warpusher Ensign Newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2014
    Timo,

    Could the hit that Kronos I took from the BoP be considered analogous to USS South Dakota at the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal? In this battle, the South Dakota suffered electrical problems from bad maintenance, losing power as a result. She was then pummelled by the Japanese and illuminated by searchlights. The Japanese were target fixated on her so much that they did not notice USS Washington advancing to within 9000 yards, which is practically pointblank shooting for a 16" naval rifle. Washington then proceeded to rapidly sink the Japanese. South Dakota suffered many hits, but nothing critical that endangered the ship. Thus she was a soft-kill, taken out of the fight early due to other errors, like Kronos 1.

    Star Trek vessels of all types seem to be be vulnerable to the early "soft kill". If they are engaged early and surprised without shielding up, they suffer. Take TWOK as an example; Khan knew where to hit Enterprise and quickly took her down. Enterprise in turn used trickery to lower Reliants shields, then she quickly did the same. The two ships disengaged to fight again later, both at reduced effectiveness.

    Kirk had to take the calculated risk of the nebula to negate the Reliant's strengths, namely her restored shields. In the Mutara Nebula fight his ship was at the advantage being fully manned, and in a close in slugfest Enterprise was a heavy cruiser vs Reliant being a destroyer. Either ship could have still won, but the ship design intangibles favor the bigger vessel in that kind of fight.
     
  11. Ithekro

    Ithekro Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2012
    Location:
    Republic of California
    Certain battles seem to show Federation and other species ships have "glass jaws" without their shields. Other battles show ships that are very resiliant to damage even if their shields fail. Then there is Enterprise with their polorized hull plating, which is almost shields, and a tech that isn't shared with later Federation starships. Probably because shields are a superior technology, and one assumes, takes up less mass on the ship's hull. Meaning more space for other things. That or the weaponry is so much better that even if the ships so have natural polorized hull plating as standard issue, they won't hold out long against phaser and photon torpedo level weaponry.
     
  12. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    We see in TNG "The Chase" that those "structural integrity fields" suitably cranked up do pretty much the same thing as polarized hull plating - they provide protection against death ray hits without involving actual forcefield shields. Perhaps those two are the very same thing? Perhaps Archer's ship just had SIFs, while all modern ships have both SIFs (set at slightly lower strength as they only need to withstand maneuvering-induced accelerations and whatever impact gets through the forcefield shields) and forcefield shields.

    The idea that any natural, physical material could stand up to those death rays is pretty unappealing. Even hand phasers can make physical matter totally disappear, and I don't see how it would make any difference whether that material is 50 kg of man-flesh or 50,000 tons of solid lead - other than the dwell time required for total destruction, that is. But enter magical "SIF" or "polarization" technology, and it's okay. Yet I'd argue that those magical technologies must be inferior to forcefield shielding in terms of protection - because forcefields are inferior to them in terms of not allowing for friendly transporting, and nevertheless are used by starships that could instead utilize various technologies to prevent hostile transporting and protect themselves with SIF or polarization tech.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  13. Enterprise1701

    Enterprise1701 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2014
    Location:
    Sol III, Sector 001, 2016 C.E.
    Can someone here justify to me how there can be all those scenes where ship weapons distinctly dent another ship's hull and yet the crew of the latter ship reports that shields aren't "gone/0%" yet? I could've sworn in Star Trek Into Darkness, the Vengeance's first shot punches a hole straight through the Enterprise's hull and yet later the crew still reports that shields aren't at zero.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2014
  14. Hypaspist

    Hypaspist Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2014
    Location:
    Terra Prime, Sol System
    SFB explanation is "burn through." The shield absorbs as much damage as it can but the amount of focused energy is great enough to damage the ship anyway. There is only so much energy a shield can actually block, even though it isn't yet inoperative. It works for me as well as any explanation.

    What is never explained is when a ship collides with something. Where do shields and the deflector dish come into play then? Who knows. Just accept it, I guess.
     
  15. Enterprise1701

    Enterprise1701 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2014
    Location:
    Sol III, Sector 001, 2016 C.E.
    Gotcha. Thanks.

    Y'know I wonder what would happen if a starship fired its phasers on a squad of Borg drones. Would their personal adaptive shields hold up? Cause as demonstrated by the holodeck scene in First Contact, Borg drones do have some weaknesses.
     
  16. Hypaspist

    Hypaspist Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2014
    Location:
    Terra Prime, Sol System
    I have no idea how adaptive shields are supposed to work. I think the best way to rationalize it is just to assume that handheld weapons cannot possibly be made strong enough to overpower a human sized personal shield. In "The Lower Decks," they have to focus fire onto an unshielded shuttlecraft for an extended period just to simulate a glancing shot from a full sized phaser - of which a huge starship has only a few and which require a significant size power generator and deck space to operate from.
    So in short, a starship's phaser would vaporize drones and anything around them unless they were protected by a comparably powerful shield source. I think real world rules apply here: bigger source of energy = more power.

    I don't know what to make of the holodeck scene. I always look at holodecks and one-off time travel episodes in the same way: don't think about it too much because it is so ridiculously implausible and the purpose is just to tell one story. Would Borg be able to resist basic ballistic weapons? Honestly I don't know why that would kill them in the first place. They're armored to begin with, and they don't need all of their normal vital organs to live anyway. Whatever: First Contact was a good movie, so you overlook it.
     
  17. publiusr

    publiusr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2010
    Now, some of the hot Jupiters that get too close to a parent star get so diffuse that they might as well be nebulae.

    Reliant did seem to be hiding in front of a pulsar though.
     
  18. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Location:
    Walking distance from Starfleet HQ
    That shot is so weird... there's this flashing light which just FADES AWAY at the moment Reliant opens fire. Did a "fog bank" just coincidentally block it at the right dramatic moment?
     
  19. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    Might be the starship's impulse exhaust momentarily lit up something there...

    Then again, we see a lot of lightning there. Who's to say some of that wouldn't last for several seconds as opposed to the more common half a second?

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  20. USS KG5

    USS KG5 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    England's green and pleasant land.
    ]The best type of kill in any military scenario. After all in a fair fight you might lose!

    Another example, German fighter aces of World War II typically acted like predators, sitting up high looking for a sitting duck, swooping down, taking them out then swooping off. In the Battle Of Britain when they tried such (daft) tactics as a rear weaver or "tail end charlie", they would often get home to find that pilot missing, with no idea what happened. A tasty target for a predator neatly taken out.

    If aware of the 109 on his tail, the decent spitfire pilot would know he could turn tighter than the 109, so quick evasive action would basically make hanging in there unwise for the 109.

    In Generations, the Duras sisters open the fight with two nasty looking torpedo hits to the engineering section of the Ent-D, that and as Timo said the fact Soran probably helped with their shields explains the effective sucker punch.