Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by Cpt. Kyle Amasov, Sep 25, 2017.
Is there any canonical evidence that the 1701 design started twenty years before it's launch?
Assuming that by canonical you mean onscreen in an aired episode, no. That was the production intent during TOS, though. As I said above, it's specified in The Making Of Star Trek by Stephen E. Whitfield and Gene Roddenberry, originally published in 1968 between the second and third seasons, that "the Enterprise-class starships have been in existence for about forty years" (pg. 203). NOTE: That phrasing wasn't necessarily meant to imply she was the first of the class, though. It was just used in the sense of "starships of the same class as the Enterprise."
Nor is there any such evidence of exactly when the Enterprise herself was launched, though she obviously predates DSC by at least some time, per "The Cage" having happened "thirteen years" before "The Menagerie" (TOS). Pike was not her first captain, per "The Counter-Clock Incident" (TAS) where Robert April has that distinction. The Okudas' Chronology and an unseen-on-screen potion of Archer's bio written for "In A Mirror, Darkly" (ENT) posit that she was launched in 2245, with the former saying that this was Roddenberry's suggestion.
They seemed to be coming from multiple points on the saucer rim and multiple points on the secondary hull (next to the deflector, under the deflector). They're not being too anal about where the launchers are, that's for sure.
...If the launchers are those boxes on the inner spinners, then it's sort of excusable that the torps initially head whichever way and only then turn towards their actual target.
I'd like to think the Crossfield was some sort of a generic template onto which the two sporeships were built, too. And quite possibly not a science ship to begin with, but something else altogether, much like exploration ships of yore often began their life as colliers (lots of room for the butterfly collections) or bombards (sturdy hulls for resisting all that ice). I mean, NCC-1031 is big and bad, with immensely large warp engines, all features seldom associated with science vessels in Trek.
Perhaps USS Crossfield, NCC-1020, used to be a shuttlecarrier or whatever, and the onboard space was ideal for a vast mushroomroom? The shuttlebay has a large door, just about the largest ever seen in Trek (save for the Galaxy main one and the Steamrunner ones a century later), but the bay itself is very shallow and barely capable of handing three shuttles. Possibly there used to be much more room dedicated to auxiliary craft ahead of the current bay.
Echoes of the real world there, too: old aircraft carriers were very useful templates for "special" ships, and the smaller and more expendable ones became command assets, transports and repair ships once no longer needed for launching aircraft. OTOH, "jeep carriers" at that point were not merely no longer needed - they were useless, for being too small to operate jets or to stow and maintain helicopters. The same might be true of shuttlecarriers in Trek, in the 2250s, as we still haven't seen a Trek era where such carriers might operate.
2245 is a date for the launch of the 1701 that has been around for a while. Register numbers aside, I did not think that design was twenty years in the making.
Aesthetically speaking, it would be rather smooth to assume that cylinder nacelles died out just before the Walker class was introduced. NCC-1017 could be among the last of the Mohicans, while USS Crossfield at NCC-10?? could be another. Then would follow the era of the boxy nacelles, with bulky Walkers later replaced by the more compact style seen on the rest of the DSC ships.
Refitting the T'Plana-Hath and her NCC-1000 range sisters with those would be justified by <insert reason>, but otherwise the new stuff would be reserved to ships with registries higher than 1200. The 1017 would never get the refit, and the casualty replacement run for that class (the losses must have been horrid, if mere three years in TOS involve three total write-outs and lots of damage and death on top of that) at NCC-1700-plus would just have the available original spares bolted on because that was the cheapest way to finish the ships and to get rid of the outdated spares.
In turn, NCC-1030 might be a custom refit absolutely requiring the super-long engines for <insert reason, mumble mumble spores mumble>, or a custom newbuild out of old stock of design elements and physical bits but without acess to engine spares. Or an in-between design, with large, clumsy old engines as in the Shenzhou, but with some semi-modern elements such as the oOo ramscoops in place of OOO ones.
The Trekyards recent speculation on why USS Discovery has such long nacelles actually makes some sense within the Probert rules of paired nacelles with clear line of sight. The Starship gets fitted out with this new untried Spore Drive, so Starfleet shifts the warp nacelles as far back and they can to allow the new drive to operate without interfering with the warp drive and vis versa. It has been seen that the Spore Drive can be used at warp speed and drop the ship out of warp at the jump destination, so warp whatever to dead stop with just a Spore jump. But having the two drive systems spread as far away from each other as physically possible while still being able to generate a large enough warp bubble might be way the nacelles are so long and thin.
That does bring up another thought though. Stamats is the engineer in charge of the Spore Drive and its his design. What about the warp drives? There is probably someone that takes care of that, but it is entirely possible that whatever warp system they installed on the Discovery and Glenn were old and reliable technology rather than cutting edge, if only so that if the Spore Drive or whatever else is on the ship fails, the warp drive can still get the ship home without massive amounts of maintainance or other troubles. USS Enterprise (NCC-1701) always seemed to have some issues with her warp drives, but this seemed to be more due to Captain Kirk pushing the ship to her limits often, more than a statement about the engine reliability. Mr. Scott (the miracle worker) kept the drives in good condition and always managed to get them running again, even if he had to jury rig a solution. And the engines could make better than Warp 8 on multiple occasions despite Mr. Scott's protests. Getting pushed all the way to Warp 14.1 under her own power, and being modified to cruise at Warp 11 by the Kelvans of Andromeda. The Galaxy-class warp core, by comparison, was a lot more experimental and touchy, tending to want to explode or threaten to explode much more often that the older Constitution-class warp systems.
Oddly enough, the spore drive is located at what's supposed to be Main Engineering, with the warp core just behind the front (?) wall. What does the s-drive have to do with warp?
The other characteristic the Discovery nacelles have in addition to immense length is that they taper. Generally, this is not what Starfleet wants of its nacelles, at least not those bits that contain the warp coils (or the big vertenium-cortenide donuts, whatever those are called - ENT suggests that "warp coil" is a separate and different thing).
The nacelles of the Franklin were pointedly conical, though, down to the point of comical... Perhaps this is evidence of the ancient design of the NCC-1030 series, then? Or some sort of a warp paddlewheel, grafted onto "normal" warp engines for the sake of giving the ship a belt, suspenders and a garter belt for the very-worst-case scenarios that might befall a ship that jumps across galaxies?
The core systems of the two drives are probably both in the traditional engineering hull. The Spore Drive operational parts seem to be the spinning parts of the saucers, and possibly the lighted sections on the front of the secondary hull along side the navigational deflector. The Warp Drive operational parts are the two nacelles that are way back on the hull, the glowing elements stating at the end of the ship, past about anything tied to the Spore Drive with only the oOo glowing front bit being there from other starships like the Shepard and Nimitz-class starships.
It is not certain that the warp coils mirrors the shape of the nacelles
A more reliable warp drive,is that at odds with the state of the other tech?
They look extremely conical from a 3/4 angle, but seen from above (while they certainly have a sharper taper than PrimeKirk's Enterprise nacelles) the ends are nowhere near as elongated or pointy as the Discovery's nacelles
Kirk's warp drive was extremely reliable under normal operating parameters, and absurdly robust when pushed beyond its apparent design limits. So, I don't think having a contemporary warp drive on the Discovery be "trouble free" for the most part is asking too much credulity from the audience
That is literally the ONLY reason they are fighting now. The war is just an excuse for the leaders of various houses to consolidate their power. The moment the war is no longer an effective way of doing this -- say, if fighting the Federation leads to their houses loosing money and their leaders being killed at appalling rates -- then they'll probably agree to peace terms.
Kol's death is the major turning point in this, because the Klingon nobility are purely self-interested. Now the most powerful and influential of the nobles is dead and a power vacuum is the result; with the cloaking device all but neutralized, it no longer makes sense to try to out-pillage their fellow Klingons against an enemy that can effectively knock them back on their heels whenever they try it. The whole "war as a unifying force" thing only works when you have a very real threat and a strong unifier rallying the troops; the Klingons have the former, but they no longer have the latter.
One wonders were the much more efficient and brutal Klingon Empire of the late 2260s came from?
..Maybe it always was just the Klingon Prussia, an exceptionally militaristic House within the greater whole? If Kor of "Errand of Mercy" is part of the House of Kor, albeit a much smaller peg than Kol used to be, we have our answer right there: the House of Kor in its stylish golden vests still ignores the rest of the Empire and efficiently pursues its own designs, which still are aggressive and expansionist and still involve grabbing power and, if none is to be had, at least credit from competing Houses.
It's not as if the Klingons would have posed a bigger threat in TOS than they did a decade prior. In DSC, they at least manage to have a runt of a war. In TOS, even this is but a faded memory.
How the ships of a single House would come to dominate the Empire in the two or three decades after DSC is less clear. Perhaps the House of Kor is also the industrial powerhouse, capable of producing lots of ships and interested in remaking its fleet rather than patching and polishing centuries-old relics? Possibly because the House fleet was all but eliminated in the DSC war? This would also go well with the new ships being less ornamental.
^ Or perhaps the war in TOS is LITERALLY just a regional war between the Federation and Kor's military forces and never actually would have extended farther than Organia and the border planets in the surrounding space?
There was a lot of talk about "the disputed area." The DSC war would be as good an explanation as any why the Federation and the Klingons had different ideas about where their borders are, or at least a section of them. What we'd later call the Klingon Neutral Zone might've been much less encompassing than its Romulan counterpart (which could explain why it was represented by a big ball in TWOK).
The Federation and Klingon Empire seemed like "mortal enemies" and evenly matched for much of TOS and into the movie era until Praxis knocked the Klingons down.
Since the Klingons never actually dared launch a war in TOS, and only a few of them agreed to it in DSC, one might suppose Starfleet would fear the Klingons for their warfighting potential (if the Houses somehow combined forces) rather than for their combat history (consisting only of uncoordinated infighting that spills over to the Federation on occasion).
Yes, I'm all for "Errand of Mercy" having been the private little war of the House of Kor. Although probably again staged in order to allow that House to lead the Empire.
How DSC wraps up is decisive in whether the House of Kor already led the Empire at that point, and was just solidifying its power, or whether it was still an uphill struggle for them. What I want to steer away is the idea that Kor, on the insignificant sideshow of Planet Organia, would be the current Chancellor or Emperor; even him being the head of the House of Kor is highly unlikely, to put it mildly. Neither Kirk nor Spock ever properly expresses the surprise of finding the Head Honcho of the Entire War at a planet Starfleet deemed unworthy of more than Kirk's little ship...
I wonder what rules govern Klingon naming practices. If some random bum is called Kor, won't there be peer pressure for him to change his name if he wants to remain part of the House of Kor?
"Errand of Mercy", if I recall correctly, has the Klingon Empire and Federation declaring war on each other before Enterprise even arrives as Organia. When Kor's forces arrive, his troops are organized, and don't resemble the less disciplined Klingon warriors we tend to see in DS9. He doesn't seem to think he's much more than the planet's occupying commander, but with Kirk capture and the Enterprise on its way back with more starships, he looks forward to the glorious battle. Even he is being watched.
After the Organians stop this war, the Cold War begins with at best proxy wars and attempts to influence worlds to join each side. Either over habitable planets (Sherman's Planet, which seems like a harsh world if only one type of Earth grain will grow there), or Dilithium and other mineral deposits is regions either along the border, inside the Treaty Zone, or perhaps even outside both power's space.
Starfleet sets up deep space communications stations that can intercept Klingon transmissions and get data from deep in the Empire (Epsilon Nine Station). The Klingons seem to start to use their cloaking devices for more deep penetration raids and recon missions, as seen with Kruge's Bird of Prey, as well as Captain Klaa's ship since he had to be rather close to Earth given that he was shooting at old Pioneer series space probes. The newer cloaking devices are not impenetrable, but they seem to no be easily noticed crossing the Federation border....or the Klingon go a long ways out of their way to get into Federation space unnoticed.
As of the TOS movies, an invisible Klingon ship gets rather automatically identified as a Bird of Prey. It would appear the Klingon MO at that time was to send out these "U-boats" on secretive missions, while the bigger ships never went invisible.
Or did the bigger ships also cloak in the 2260s through 2290s, but only "strategically", to hide their deployment into contested space? Perhaps the cloak was deemed worthless in combat, where the enemy would be actively defeating it with futuro-sonar at close range, but still quite useful in hiding the fact that a battle cruiser was moving from A to B, where no Federation sensor was being pointed?
I'm not sure about the "less disciplined" DS9 Klingons. "Errand" shows largish infantry formations moving in (even if not being able to afford all that many extras). DS9 generally shows very small teams operating with independent initiative (and without implying that larger numbers are partaking off-camera). Both could fit in the same military with ease.
OTOH, the TOS ones might be of pariah classes: perhaps flatheads aren't allowed independence and initiative?
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