Why didn't the Federation salvage Empok Nor?

Discussion in 'Deep Space Nine' started by JediKnightButler, Apr 28, 2013.

  1. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Plus, many on Cardassia (and on the station) probably thought they would be back next Tuesday anyway, when all this "giving in to the Federation" nonsense was sorted out.

    Having one "standardized mining station" located in the middle of empty space and another on low planetary orbit would tell us something about the type of standardization that Cardassians practice - it'd really be a bit like having a floating offshore oil drilling rig applied on Texan or Siberian inland wells as is! But perhaps Empok Nor is the more typical application of this model, and Empok Nor a jury-rigged aberration?

    After all, in "Necessary Evil" we saw that the area that would be the elegant and user-friendly Promenade once the Federation took over and also on Empok Nor was equipped with clumsy chicken-wire-and-death-ray walls for managing the flow of Bajoran laborers. Apparently, the station wasn't really designed for that sort of personnel policy from the get-go...

    http://ds9.trekcore.com/gallery/albums/2x08/necevil089.jpg
    http://ds9.trekcore.com/gallery/albums/2x08/necevil091.jpg

    Yet its refining systems did seem sadistically customized for expendable labor for some reason, as per the descriptions in "Civil Defense". Or did we misunderstand something? Perhaps the workstations there (and on Empok Nor) were quite comfortable and ergonomic for the normally employed Cardassian workers, and Bajorans only suffered there due to their inferior physique?

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  2. KNH

    KNH Commander Red Shirt

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    As we're told in the episode it debuted in, Empok Nor was a test site for experimental drugs. Maybe the labor/mining atmosphere lent itself to testing in a way that made it more economical to use it rather than build a new station?
     
  3. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    This doesn't explain yet what a mining station would be doing far away from mines, though.

    And in any case, the drug experiment appeared to be but a minor aspect of the station's operations. Indeed, it may not have been part of those operations at all - but merely something that was brought to the station when it was already clear that operations would cease. After all, the drug-crazed soldiers were supposed to kill everybody at sight, which is something you only want to experiment on after you yourself have departed...

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  4. Mark_Nguyen

    Mark_Nguyen Commodore Commodore

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    Who knows? Assuming that the station was NOT in orbit around some planet that wasn't seen (because it was ALWAYS on the other side of the camera at that time), or for that matter near an cluster or belt of asteroids (far enough to avoid navigational hazards, and JUST far enough not to be seen), perhaps it was being towed somewhere, broke free, and was decided to abandon it wherever it ended up or drifted. Or perhaps it did simply that, and broke orbit somehow after it was abandoned... The same way its onboard computer keeps a lookout for passing ships to make sure its orientation is at least 45 degrees to their apparent "up".

    Mark
     
  5. Anduril

    Anduril Captain Captain

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    I always liked how Kronos One flies down into camera view from the top left of the screen, kinda levels off, and then flies back upwards again to finally come along side the Enterprise.

    Too much bloodwine maybe?
     
  6. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    The Reliant also rolls in order to match attitude with the Enterprise. Presumably, all ships do this sort of a little ballet shortly before they begin to share a film frame, and ships of a feather know the rules so they can make do with a simple roll, whereas ships from alien cultures are forced to undergo a more awkward back-and-forth, do-you-lead-or-do-I dance until they settle for a common orientation.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  7. Paul Weaver

    Paul Weaver Fleet Captain Premium Member

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    Self destruct tends to take 5 minutes, I think the explanation that they thought they'd be back is more realistic.

    Weren't the mines on Bajor mostly on the surface, maybe the odd moon.

    Why ship raw ore up to the station to process when you could just build a processing plant on the surface and ship the refined product?
     
  8. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I dunno, why isn't there a refinery next to every oil rig on our planet?
     
  9. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    If refining gear is more expensive than mining gear, it doesn't merely make sense to concentrate the former - it makes sense to move it to a secure location where Bajoran terrorists can't get to it. A surface location would offer logistical advantages in that one would only have to ship the end product to orbit, not dull ore. However, you'd still also need an orbiting location for your intimidation base and starship harbor. One integrated location might be better than two.

    And the cost of surface-to-orbit logistics might be negligible if you can use transporters on the ore...

    We still have a poor picture of how Terok Nor was supposed to operate. The DS9 Tech Manual offers some ideas, but few of these get onscreen support. How did the ore get up there? How did it flow through the station? What was done to it, exactly? Who did it - repressed Bajoran slaves (never mentioned in any context), or privileged Bajoran paid workers who were free to move (since e.g. Kira moved quite freely in "Necessary Evil")? How did the end products get to Cardassia - or was ore perhaps shipped as well? Was the station able to process multiple types of ore, or did it specialize, and if so, in what? What other roles did the station have?

    Also, what other assets might the Cardassians have had in the system? We only heard of prison camps, one of which had some mining going on; we didn't learn how most of the mines were run. Surface garrisons, government strongholds and the like were never mentioned. Yet apparently the Resistance still occasionally had a Cardassian target to strike at, rather than merely lashing out on fellow Bajorans.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  10. TheRoyalFamily

    TheRoyalFamily Commodore Commodore

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    From what we've seen in the show, it's pretty clear that the ore-processing part of DS9 was probably a modular component of the station. It was so non-integrated to the rest of the station that it seems no one bothered to even clean up the leftover ore on the floor, let alone the computer systems, in over two years!
     
  11. wingsabre

    wingsabre Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    I think from the pilot, Terok Nor became DS9 because the Federation was asked by Bajor to help them rebuild from the occupation. It was mainly a humanitarian mission, and when Sisko discovered the wormhole the Federation actively sought to bring Bajor into the Federation because access to the wormhole was a huge strategic gain for the Federation.

    Empok Nor was located in the Travis System and abandoned by the Cardassians. The Travis System was in Cardassian space, until their war with the Klingons. It looks like there was no real strategic value to that sector other than the proximity to Federation space. It had no value to the Dominions. Maybe during the first Cardassian-Federation war, they used the base as a station to launch attacks. The first introduction of the base identified that the Cardassians used it as a research station on psychotropic drugs, and probably did researched on weaponizing it. They probably chose the location because it kept research far away from main Cardassian space, and was far enough so they can deploy their psychotropic weapons on enemies.

    Instead of repairing an abandoned station, filled with traps, and with systems that don't really match Federation technology, it would likely be faster to just build a brand new station from scratch. Towing that station would take years if they can't warp it to another sector. During the first season of DS9 there were several incidences where the station's hidden booby traps were activated, even after the Federation attempted to clear them all out.

    Currently in the US, there's a plan to build a giant multi-hundred mile long pipe line from Canada to Texas, called the Keystone pipeline, where it will carry crude shale oil to refineries in Texas. If you could explain why it would be better to just build refineries in Montana or some other border state with Canada instead of building the pipeline, then your very logical question about building ore processing plants on the surface on the world would make a lot more sense.

    With that said, I think that there were ore processing plants on the surface of the planet, however certain raw ore types were probably brought up to the stations because they might be a specific rare type that required the station's energy output to process it. Additionally processing could further mean distribution of the processed ores to freighters, and they needed Bajorian slaves to short them.
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2013
  12. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    ...Which seemed to take up all of one room and involve two test subjects. For all we know, similar research took place on Empok Nor, and played no greater role there.

    Oil flows; ore doesn't. In order to move ore any appreciable distances, you need waterways, or in a worst case scenario you go for the hugely more expensive option of using a railroad.

    Whether ore in the Trek reality would flow is unknown. Beaming it to orbit would appear cheap and simple, but we may be deceived as to the true cost and complexity of beaming because we see Starfleet (with is high priorities and endless resources) use it so liberally on small-scale applications. Flying it to orbit in suitable barges sounds expensive, plus we never saw such barges in either Cardassian or Bajoran hands.

    Or did we? Both Cardassia and Bajor operate two types of commonly seen triangular ship, but with interstellar capabilities that would appear completely superfluous to the ore barge mission. Cardassian allies also operate a type frequently seen in Bajoran hands - the one originally appearing as the Wadi ship (or was it perhaps a Bajoran ship transporting the Wadi after all?) and featuring the same sort of "warp engine" hexagons as one of the triangle ships, plus the same sort of hull rings as the Cardassian patrol ship.

    If Bajor got its share of Cardassian interstellar hardware when the occupiers withdraw, it would seem odd for them to fail to obtain the supposedly less precious ore barges, too. I mean, if the Cardassians didn't take along or blow up all of their warp vessels when they left, why should they take along or scuttle mere barges?

    We could of course also argue that these common types were Bajoran, and Cardassians stole some during the occupation, explaining why they couldn't take all of these from Bajor when withdrawing (and why Bajoran refugees and terrorists had such easy access to these in, say, "Ensign Ro" or "Past Prologue"). This wouldn't help with the barge problem, though.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  13. publiusr

    publiusr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    What really would have been nice would be to have it towed to a stabilized Barzan wormhole to the delta Quadrant, with the long range transporter linking DS9 to it.

    That would be a good way to move fast.
     
  14. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    We know next to nothing about this long range transporter. For one thing, we don't know if it exists: "Covenant" shows no long range transporting, merely Kira leaving DS9 and ending up on Empok Nor somehow, and the only people to believe in this being a transporting feat are heroes at loss to explain what just happened, and a villain with an interest in lying about how Kira was caught. And we never heard of transporters of any sort actually working through wormholes; the one attempt at such in "Eye of the Needle" was a failure.

    Towing Empok Nor to the Alpha Quadrant end of the wormhole, and sailing the better equipped and armed DS9 through it to the Gamma end, would probably have been a smart move, though... At least communications could have been kept flowing.

    Timo Saloniemi
     

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