Does warp drive work (or work efficiently) on ships when one nacelle is damaged/destroyed?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Voyager' started by saladdays, Sep 17, 2019.

  1. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Which then makes one wonder why our heroes bothered with the hairly warp 9+ escape at all, when sublight travel of the exact same path in the reverse direction only took this one hour. I mean, yeah, apparently warp 9+ would then be possibly fifty times faster than sublight - but what makes the heroes think their enemy could not do fifty cee and catch them?

    It's not just "Farpoint", of course. In "Arsenal of Freedom", the separated saucer is likewise supposed to travel vast distances in a short time. And this time the separation happens explicitly at sublight/standstill, as carefully specified in dialogue, while in "Farpoint" the dialogue at least was all about high speed separation and thus potentially about giving the saucer an initial boost.

    If the saucer does not have built-in warp engines that can independently accelerate it from standstill to respectable interstellar speed, then LaForge in "Arsenal" is guilty of attempted massive manslaughter for having deliberately denied the saucer folks their vital warp speed boost away from the deadly threat.

    Fortunately, nothing in Star Trek suggests the E-D saucer should be warp-incapable or lacking in warp engines. Very few plotlines anywhere go to the trouble of establishing that X can't move at warp; they get that out of the way in the second TOS pilot already, telling the audience that with the warp engines damaged, Kirk faces a return voyage of years rather than days. The TNG saucer's capabilities or lack thereof aren't discussed, merely shown. And we see what looks very much like independent warping around. Just as one would expect from a Federation starship (or its major component). Or from a flying saucer in general...

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  2. valkyrie013

    valkyrie013 Captain Captain

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    Thats why I'd rather a 4 nacelle ship like the Cheyyenne or Stargazer .. Especially if your 100's of light years from federation space! :)
    For the saucer, its just a big life boat, it has power and space to house the entire crew for months to wait for rescue.
    as for the seperation, doing so at warp is high risk, and I belive the saucer has a "Warp Sustainer" or some technobable basically it can slow down from warp after the Eng section takes off.. but it is incappable of warp.
    in the Lit Verse, had one galaxy class had some deployable warp nacelles in the sacuer to give it warp capability. maybe a warp coil somewhere in there.. somewhere :)
     
  3. Prax

    Prax Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    You make it sound like there's some kind of discontinuity. All the Klingons say is that they can repair the ship in an hour. If you had to drive from LA to San Diego and you got a flat tire, what is the better option, fix it in a half hour, or just walk all the way there? Fixing it would get you there in less than 3 hours. Walking there would take more than 3 days.

    Even if they had specifically said "They've disabled our port nacelle. Our Klingon ship is stuck here," does that really say anything about the NX-01 200 years earlier? In the case of the NX, they stopped for repairs also, and determined it would be almost impossible to fix it, and take at least six months.
     
  4. Kor

    Kor Admiral Admiral

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    Yes, but the ship can only go in circles. And if you engage really high warp, this can leave subspace donuts in the "pavement" of space.

    Kor
     
  5. yotsuya

    yotsuya Captain Captain

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    In Encounter At Farpoint the separation happened at high warp speed. The saucer would have costed for a while and could have traveled quite a distance.

    We are never shown anything in any Star Trek series about auxiliary warp drive systems. Same with Star Wars, but I assume both universes have them. So in most situations it is faster to sit tight and repair the system and then travel to the destination instead of trying to limp along on damaged or backup systems. I would say that the impulse engine system can act as a backup warp drive of very limited ability. That the saucer in EAC arrives at the intended destination indicates to me that it was able to maintain warp speed (probably at slowly decreasing velocity) until they arrived... many hours after the main drive section. We always focus on the main system without talking about if there is a backup or what it can do.
     
  6. Tenacity

    Tenacity Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Without a warp drive, would the saucer retain the capacity to continue to enclose itself in a warp field?

    Without a warp field, could the saucer remain in "warp space?"

    If it doesn't remain in warp space, doesn't that mean that the saucer is therefor in regular space, and at sublight speeds?
     
  7. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Alas, it's not an issue of "remaining" at warp in "Arsenal of Freedom". There, the saucer is expected to clear the battlefield on its own after being deployed at standstill. Nothing would have prevented LaForge from giving the saucer a boost that would then let it "remain" at warp and thus escape the killer drones. Yet LaForge opted not to do that, and instead told Logan to undertake an interstellar journey in the saucer from said standstill start.

    Now, if we want to argue "remaining", we may argue that LaForge deliberately refused to give Logan the opportunity to use warp, because he feared Logan would take the saucer back to the battle. Not sure how plausible this would be (for Logan), but it doesn't appear acceptable (for LaForge).

    Luckily, there are no plotlines where the saucer would be expected to go to warp but can't. Nor are the plots where the saucer would be expected to stay put because it can't do warp. This leaves the field wide open for stories where the saucer implicitly goes to warp, such as "Farpoint" and "Arsenal", and for explicit warp, even though we get no such stories.

    (What we do get is "Brothers" where the heroes think they can stop Data from staying at warp in the saucer. Which doesn't rely on the saucer being incapable of warp explicitly, and the implicit here is not technobabble about saucer engines or lack thereof: the implicit is that the heroes know their stuff, and are doing their damnedest to stop Data from staying at warp. They can't stop the main engines, but stopping those of the saucer is not forbidden from them in dialogue.)

    It's also pretty amazing that TOS and VOY alike are free of stories where somebody in a ship that doesn't have warp would travel at FTL. TNG has a possible case in that Riker in "Best of Both Worlds" for some reason drops to impulse when chasing the Borg in the Sol system, and nevertheless intends to reach Earth faster than light, as per an explicit ETA. But nobody says or shows that he doesn't go back to warp to achieve that! All the rest of the weird cases of STL vs FTL are of the sort where warp, including extreme high warp, only ever amounts to sublight speeds...

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  8. yotsuya

    yotsuya Captain Captain

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    I agree. It is an area they do not cover. We get some technical manual stuff, but the shows don't always adhere to the technical manual even when the manual is written by a member of the production. I feel the story telling implies that the saucer is capable of limited warp travel and can maintain the warp bubble it came out of to maintain faster travel in EAC (though as slowing speeds). They never specifically say that it can or can't do that, only the implication of the stories (and also Arsenal of Freedom).
     
  9. F. King Daniel

    F. King Daniel Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    You guys are giving waaaaaaaaay too much thought to some VFX that were likely made only with the intent of looking cool. The dialogue states they slowed to detach at near warp but the visuals show the streaking stars. Rememeber also, it was episode one, and lots of Early Instalment Weirdness was going on (like Troi experiencing all the emotions she sensed, leading to lots of awkward tears and orgasms)
     
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  10. HelenofBorg

    HelenofBorg Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    If you remember from one epside of TNG... when one nacelle was destroyed as a result of a collision with another ship coming out of a temporal rift, the Enterprise was destroyed. I can't remember the name of the episode, but they were in a time loop. I guess it depends on how badly the nacelle is damaged as to how it effects the ship. Then again, sometimes situations happen to fit the plot.
     
  11. SolarisOne

    SolarisOne Captain Captain

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    "Cause and Effect".
     
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  12. saladdays

    saladdays Commander Red Shirt

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    Both of these could be true at the same time. While there very well could have been intention for the saucer to be able to travel in limited warp speed, the inconsistencies/weirdness going on in the first episode is likely at least a reason for some of these unanswered questions.
     
  13. Adm. Kayla DeGrassio

    Adm. Kayla DeGrassio Ensign Newbie

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    Look at VGR Season 6 Episode 23....Equinox. USS Voyager fires and destroys the Port Nacelle on the Equinox, and it starts an unstable drift as it moves through space.
     
  14. Maccyj571086

    Maccyj571086 Ensign Newbie

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    Perhaps with the starship is designed to operate with 2 nacelles but with one it becomes unstable, I have seen ships operate with just one.
     
  15. Prax

    Prax Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yaknow, the NX has that Warp field stabilizer thingy in between the nacelles. Maybe that gives them the ability to configure a 1 nacelle/Warp 1 flight.
     
  16. at Quark's

    at Quark's Commodore Commodore

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    Hrm... 1.7 is approximately the cube root of 5, and we also know speed is a cubic function of warp, in those days. Could it be that the NX with only one nacelle would have a "linear" efficiency, and would require 2 nacelles for the full "cubic" effect ?
     
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  17. Prax

    Prax Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    So I guess they had to travel the square route..:lol:


    :(I'll see myself out
     
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