Why the lack of personal protection?

Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by flamewolf393, Aug 27, 2012.

  1. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Aug 26, 2003
    Perhaps we could blame that on the ion storm?

    Of course, story logic would best be served if Shinzon hired these goons to deny Picard the chance to stop and think. He might then have given them some stealth/jamming aids as well.

    That doesn't explain why it would lack dry fording ability or didn't have an easily accessible loading area.

    On the other hand, TAS style forcefields would be "barebones" technology by Trek standards, probably much more reliable than crankshafts or spring suspension. So the weatherproofing, dustproofing and fording issues might be solved by assuming such a field. Only the awkwardness of Worf's position might need critique, then.

    I could also see Starfleet having nothing to do with the Argo, of course. It might be Picard's very own hobby project, about as practicable for mobility as the horses or sailing ships that Picard loves to operate on the holodeck. For all we know, it is an exact replica of a 200-year-old design that pleases Picard's eye and offers a sufficient challenge to his driving skills, buttocks durability and so forth. The one really odd thing about that would then be Worf's cannon. ;)

    Timo Saloniemi
  2. mupps

    mupps Lieutenant Red Shirt

    Aug 15, 2011
    Well most gunwagons nowadays are not amphibious or indeed sealed and can ford usually around the 500mm-750mm mark which is enough for most streams and low water courses.
    If you're fording a river/water obstacle deeper then that then you might use something else or daisy chain vehicles like we do now.
    We also sling kit on the outside of vehicles and the Argo buggy is fairly small to have much in th way of load carry capacity. The Argo looks to me more like a SEAL DPV etc.

    Light, fast only used for a few Days recce/strike missions at most and you'd just sling kit onto it.
    It's a very specialist type of vehicle.

    My thinking is in ST it was designed for use on planest where shuttles/transporters are unreliable due to weather, geography, enemy actions (jammers ect).

    Instead of having to be dropped off and walk you get a light strike buggy.
    If it get's wasted, no big deal. You can pretty much replicate them as needed.

    We never really saw much in the way of defensive shielding in ground combat anyway....plot devices I guess.

    Quite possible...
  3. KamenRiderBlade

    KamenRiderBlade Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Oct 24, 2012
    They've shown Phaser proof barrels / containers in many phaser fights.

    Why couldn't they have used the same material as those barrels / containers and make either small scales or plates and mount them like modern body armor?

    Interceptor armor has large plates for front / back.

    Dragonskin is based off of lots of tiny discs arranged in a chain mail esque fashion.

    Either way would've protected a person from energy blasts in a fire fight.

    It makes no sense.

    Worf was able to make a temporary shield for that Holodeck malfunction episode.

    If they took the time to build a proper portable one, it could probably take quite a few hits before going down.

    The sheer number of redshirts that could've avoided dying due to energy blasts.
  4. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Aug 26, 2003
    That'd depend on the setting. The barrel is not shattered or vaporized - but perhaps it is stunned?

    In any case, the phaser vaporization effect does not propagate indefinitely in a given substance, and doesn't easily hop from one substance to another. In TOS, the victim of a phaser hit disappears, but the floor beneath him does not. Or, say, Valeris in ST6 fires at a kettle, removing the metal, but the organics inside remain. Quite possibly a weapon tuned to remove you from existence would fail to remove a random barrel from existence by miss or ricochet.

    Would it be possible to utilize that property to create armor? Say, if you wore kitchen-grade steel, would the phaser remove that but leave your body unhurt?

    Probably. But would that do any good? If your enemy knew the substance you wear as armor, he would just tune his phaser to remove both the substance and your body from existence with a single shot. Phasers can handle "composite" targets to some degree: a TOS hit at a Klingon wearing a chainmailish shirt and holding a gun removes the Klingon, the shirt and the gun alike.

    Perhaps you could surprise the enemy by wearing a different type of armor to every battle. But no single substance would in any way be phaserproof - only surprising combinations, preferably with a lot of airspace in between, would.

    Timo Saloniemi
  5. KamenRiderBlade

    KamenRiderBlade Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Oct 24, 2012
    Over the years, the Phaser effect on life forms have varied from burning a giant wound, vaporizing, punching a hole, exploding. It's never consistant.

    That has always annoyed me.
  6. Unicron

    Unicron Continuity Spackle Moderator

    May 8, 2003
    The Red Church of Niah
    That's probably because different settings were shown on different types of phasers.
  7. ProwlAlpha

    ProwlAlpha Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Feb 10, 2004
    As a former soldier, I, for one, would rather go into a potentially dangerous situation with body armor despite its weight than going with out because of the comfort-ability issue, I would rather live.

    That is the one thing that generally bugged me was the lack of personal protection in the Trek Universe. I understand about not taking a security team to a diplomatic mission, but any mission where there is a big unknown, such as a brand-new planet, I would take the cumbersome gear.

    Granted all the gear will be nullified by a writer, but at least have allusions to it or show a redshirt using them. As for the Klingons' armor, it may have started out as armor, but they are just uniforms.

    I always kinda of thought as the Argo as a low-profile for low-tech worlds and there are various different level tech vehicles for each mission profile.
  8. KamenRiderBlade

    KamenRiderBlade Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Oct 24, 2012
    My position stands. They had phaser proof barrels within Starfleet cargo bays. With that, they could've made the equivalent of futuristic Interceptor armor or Dragon Skin armor. The sheer amount of lives it would've saved would be tremendous. Damn you writers and gleefully killing random Red / Yellow shirts.
  9. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Aug 26, 2003
    Where exactly do we see a phaserproof barrel?

    We have seen fancy things such as a phaserproof painting in "Conspiracy"...

    (Damn, no blu-ray screencaps at TrekCore!)

    ...but no proof that it was hit with a kill beam. Stun beams are a good combat option in most situations, as it rarely is tactically necessary to permanently remove an enemy combatant from the equation. Kill settings are useful mainly when you want to assassinate, or when you want to wrestle permanent control of a location out of the hands of an enemy that otherwise might have the ability to regroup. But our heroes and even our villains fairly seldom assassinate, as their true tactical goals lie elsewhere. And most fights in Star Trek do not involve wrestling control of a location in the classic infantry manner - rather, they are exchanges of fire in a starship corridor or on a planetside location in a short-lived ambush or raid situation that is not going to have any permanent consequences.

    So, is there a situation where a barrel or comparable structure would have withstood a kill phaser?

    There are situations where a definite kill phaser hits a wall and/or a floor in, say, "In the Hands of the Prophets".


    Sometimes TPTB introduce a scorch mark there, sometimes not; typically, it disappears within a few shots anyway. But walls have a good excuse to be phaserproof.

    Timo Saloniemi
  10. KamenRiderBlade

    KamenRiderBlade Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Oct 24, 2012
    That is a funny screen cap of sisko falling on the assailant.


    Honestly, I'd have to look for the situation or screen cap at some point.