Enterprise E. What made it different than Enterprise D?

Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by urrutiap, Mar 27, 2021.

  1. Deks

    Deks Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Oct 16, 2003
    Voyager used the Bussard collectors ramscoops to collect radiogenic isotopes from Vaadwaur planetary atmosphere and use them as a power source.
    They were also used to gather Sirilium from a class 17 nebula, and plasma particles from astral eddies.
    On all 3 occasions Voyager used them as a way to supplement the ships power.

    Enterprise-D used them on 2 occasions to release specific elements.

    Enterprise-E used them to collect the metreon gas from the Briar patch to help them in subduing So'Na ships (well, the So'Na pretty much did it to themselves when they fired on the gas the Enterprise released).

    So, yes, the Bussard collectors can pick up and blow out matter (or filter specific elements from collected matter), however that doesn't appear to be their sole function... seeing that we DO have some observational data which can support the premise they aid in creating extra energy for the ship - so the statement wouldn't be incorrect (technically speaking).

    We have no direct observational data (at least nothing from on-screen evidence) which suggests the collectors clear path through interstellar space (the main deflector dish is what moves interstellar dust etc. away from the ship).
     
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  2. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Aug 26, 2003
    I guess the point is that whenever the Bussards get used for sucking in X, for all values of X, the heroes treat this as a fantastic new idea.

    Which would be consistent with

    a) sucking not being the design intent behind the machines
    b) sucking of something else than X being the design intent

    Perhaps these things do suck interstellar hydrogen after all, despite this never getting a mention?

    (As for "Dragon's Teeth", Janeway doesn't specify "Bussards" or "ramscoops" or "collectors". Instead, she micromanages the opening of "ports" and "reversing of pressure gradient", an apparently highly unusual procedure that might well bypass the ramscoops altogether.)

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  3. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Aug 26, 2003
    No, in visuals. Which is the only reason we have for believing that there are ramscoops on Kirk's ship, too.

    The point being, absolutely nothing separates Cochrane's rig from Kirk's starship there. And a glowing curved shape at the front end of a nacelle would appear to be the one and only thing common to all Starfleet ships: many lack a saucer, a deflector, nacelles and pylons etc, but all have the domes. And only the TMP style of engine lacks the glow, but now we learn from DS9 and LDS that the glow can be there on certain flight modes anyway...

    It would help if we had a reason to believe in the space-energy thing - especially the "unpredictable" part of it. Yet warp is warp everywhere, there being no "highways" even if there are rare "speed bumps".

    Oh, I'll go in the other direction and argue that there is always a ST:ID type of sphere at the heart of the warp power system. It just gets smaller with time, in relative terms, so that in TNG we have this fancy oven in the middle of shirtsleeves Main Engineering, with feeds from above and below, while back in TOS and the TOS movies we had a giant of a ball belowdecks, with just the output shafts emerging from the zone of lethal radiation to the coveralls-safe zone and never protruding into the shirtsleeves zone.

    It's quite possible to argue TOS and the early TOS movies were different from TNG, because little of their tech is described in detail (that is, in principle). But we now know the tech of ENT was the same as TNG, so "different" would need to mean "a brief experiment". Which might not be quite as attractive as "evolution".

    Timo Saloniemi
     
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  4. Deks

    Deks Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Oct 16, 2003
    The bussard collectors do make it easier to collect matter or virtually any kind of particle so it can be processed and used as a power source, but they also do filter out the stuff so you can collect what you need and shove it into the systems.

    In case of 'Dragon's Teeth', Janeway said the following:
    "Damned if we do, damned if we don't. Open the forward nacelle ports and reverse the pressure gradient. Take in six hundred kilograms."

    I can't think of any other 'ports' on the nacelles that might be placed on the forward section of the nacelles and serve a different function than the bussard collectors.
    She might not necessarily call them bussard collectors in that given moment either... and would she have to?
    Ramscoops, collectors, or ports... might be interchangeable terms which are applicable to a given situation.