Yet Another Doomsday Machine Thread

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by ssosmcin, Oct 22, 2020.

  1. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    The distress call first led the heroes to a system the beast had already eaten, with no Constellation in sight. The Enterprise then traveled through an unknown number of systems so that the heroes could label each of those as also eaten, and finally reached L-374 where the Constellation and the DDM were. To follow a path to that location, they'd need said path, establishing there was only one. So the Constellation would have collected the same data on her own respective route to the current whereabouts of the DDM.

    Would the Constellation have started following that path at an earlier point? If we want to assume this, we need to address a couple of issues:

    1) Why not report on the findings ASAP? Decker would not be responding to a distress call, so he would have no competing mission to complete first.
    2) The failure to report wouldn't be because of jamming. The subspace block to communications appears to emanate from the DDM (indeed, the heroes only first notice this at L-374). In order to fail to report or to make an intelligible SOS, a starship would have to be pretty damn close to the DDM.
    3) The failure to report also wouldn't be because Decker was hurrying to rescue folks at L-373 or whatever. If it were not okay for all the L-systems to be reduced to rubble, this would have been mentioned.
    4) Kirk had been to L-370 the previous year. If anything, Decker ought to avoid that system, so as not to overlap. So odds are that he actually first noticed carnage in a system farther up the path (if we define DDM as the top), not down, and started following from there. Decker's data thus wouldn't add to Kirk's.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  2. MAGolding

    MAGolding Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Why would Spock have to say "dwarf galaxy" instead of "glaxy" if the track of destruction came from a dwarf galaxy?

    In 2006 the International Astronomical Union created official definitions which make "planets" and "dwarf planets" too different and totally separate categories of astronomical objects. So long as those definitions remain in force, it would be scientifically incorrect to call a dwarf planet a "planet". Is that the case with dwarf galaxies and galaxies?

    https://astronomy.swin.edu.au/cosmos/D/dwarf+galaxy

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dwarf_galaxy

    https://www.cosmotography.com/images/dwarf_galaxy_dark_matter.html

    These statements state that dwarf galaxies are a subcategory of galaxies in general; in fact the most numerous subcategory of galaxies. A typical, average galaxy is a dwarf galaxy, just as a typical, average star is called a dwarf star.

    Therefore, it is perfectly correct to call a dwarf galaxy a plain "galaxy".

    The Doomsday machine may not need a lot of fuel to travel through intergalactic space. In "By Any Other Name", the Kelvins modified the Enteprise to make a voyage of about 2,500,000 light years, and taking almost 300 years, to the Andromeda Galaxy.

    The Kelvin modifications included greatly increasing the speed of the Enterprise, and might have might have included making the Enterprise's engines more fuel efficient and/or adding more fuel storage capacity.

    But it is certainly possible that the Enterprise normally carries enough matter and antimatter fuel to take an almost 300 years long journey to the Andromeda Galaxy about 2,500,000 light years away.

    Or maybe the Enterprise has the ability to gather interstellar hydrogen with a Bussard collector and convert half of that hydrogen to antimatter for the matter/antimatter reactions. Today it takes millions of times as much energy to produce an antiparticle as is produced by annihilating that particle, but possibly the Enterprise has an almost totally efficient process that produces antimatter with no greater energy requireements than the energy the fusion reactors can produce by fusing some of the hydrogen collected in interstellar space.

    In that case the Enterprise could travel in interstellar space until the warp engines wore out. And even though hydrogen gas is much thinner in intergalactic space, it might still be possible to fuel a starship or a Doomsday Machine with the thin hydrogen gas in intergalactic space.

    In either case, apparently the fuel requirements for an intergalactic voyage of millions of light years lasting for centuries would not be great enough that huge external fuel tanks - making it look like a multi stage rocket - would have to be added to the Enterprise or to the Doomsday Machine for such a voyage.

    So the only reason why the Doomsday Machine would have to "eat" some of the rubble of hte planets it destroys would be to fuel its planet destroying weapon. i

    The rubble of any astronomical body large enough to be called a planet would be incredably vast compared to the size of the Doomsday Machine. Even if the Doomsday Machine needed only one millionth of the mass of the first planet it destroyed to fuel the explosion of the next planet to be destroyed, that one millionth of a plaent's mass would probably be countless thousands of times as large as the doomsday Machine.

    But the Doomsday Machine is not shown using vast external fuel tanks many times its own size. Presumably it has a way to convert almost all the planetary mass that it "eats" into energy which is stored inside it with extreme energy density.

    Or maybe the Doomsday Machine travels to a planet, slices off a tiny piece of it, converts that tiny peice into energy for the weapon, an d slices off a ten times larger pice, convents that to ten times as much energy, uses that energy to slice off a piece a hundred times as large, converts that piece into a hudnred times as much energy, and so on and so on until it has enough energy to slice the planet up into pieces.

    In any case the energy requirements to convert a planet into rubble are immense, while the energy requirements necessary for interstellar travel are apparently much less in Star Trek. There is absolutely no statement in Star Trek that the Federation or any other power destroys entire stars, or entire planets, or even entire asteroids, for fuel for warp drive use.

    In my opinion, the doomsday Machne would not be "hungry" for fuel tor its faster than light drive after arriving from a voyage from another galaxy, no matter how many decades, centuries, or millennia such a voyage took. Instead it would be "hungry" for fuel to power its planet destrying weapon. which it hadn't used during the intergalactic voyage.

    And apparently the Doomsday Maachine can get the fuel it needs for its planet blasting weapon from the planets it destroys.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2020
  3. Commishsleer

    Commishsleer Commodore Commodore

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    Yes perhaps TOS anticipated the discovery of the galaxy within our Galaxy. Perhaps the galaxy that Spock was talking about was Canis Major and something about objects fro that galaxy and the path of destruction clued Spock into it origin. Something that only Vulcan astronomers know. So it would have plenty of fuel from its own and our galaxy to consume on its way if it needed to .
     
  4. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    What I don't get is if and why the Enterprise returned their engines to normal capacity after coming back inside the Milky Way! Obviously they had to due to the pressures of sixties television. They couldn't travel faster than warp nine say in The Ultimate Computer because if that was shown before By Any Other Name it would cause a problem for the keen eared audience. The same as if mentioning of Eminiar 7 in BAON was shown before A Taste of Armageddon! They handled the two Vulcan episodes in season two well by not quoting the earlier adventure there! But in reality if your ship had been updated to faster speeds would you just change your ship back to normal? Of course not. Starfleet itself would be using that new technology in it's experimental vessels surely? If for no other reason than being faster and exploiting that power over it's enemies like the Klingons and the Romulans! :techman:
    JB
     
  5. Commishsleer

    Commishsleer Commodore Commodore

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    And why didn't they use the cloak after "The Enterprise Incident" or telekinesis they developed after "Plato" or superfast speeds in "Wink" or time travel to save the civilisations wiped out by the Doomsday machine or Giant Space Amoeba?
     
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  6. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I doubt the Kelvans would have been willing to share their tech with the Feds, for any reason. But the superpowers gained by the heroes themselves would have the reset button built in without any need for "doubt": Scalosian water kills you, and the already well-known properties of kironide apparently took the heroes by surprise on Platonius simply because that's the only planet on which they allow for telekinesis.

    Cloaks and time travel are doctrinal choices, though, with no obvious showstoppers. So I trust they are in active use - by Top. Men.

    TOS really did a surprisingly good job steering clear of consequences...

    Tiwo Saloniemi
     
  7. BK613

    BK613 Commodore Commodore

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    And yet, the Constellation is experiencing exceptionally heavy interference just as it is entering L374 when the DDM is deep in the system destroying the fourth planet. Maybe the field really ramps up when the DDM is in world-killing mode. Regardless, it is hard to send smoke signals when you are on the far side of a forest fire. LOL. IOW, all the places the Constellation wants to talk to are on the far side of the interference field.
    DECKER [OC]: Captain's log, stardate 4202.1. Exceptionally heavy subspace interference still prevents our contacting Starfleet to inform them of the destroyed solar systems we have encountered. We are now entering system L-374. Science Officer Masada reports the fourth planet seems to be breaking up. We are going to investigate.
     
  8. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    The fact that Kirk's team never notices any of this jamming until hitting L-374 might actually suggest the DDM is moving from system to system at lightning speed, and Decker is chasing it at extremely close range. That is, the trail isn't lukewarm, even though Kirk's "we were last here a year ago" sentiments would allow for that: it's red hot, and Decker doesn't have the luxury of standing back when he sees devastation in high speed motion.

    That is, of course he would have that luxury: he could simply refuse to chase, apply his engines for a bit of sideways travel, and thus be able to tell HQ that there are broken planets ahead of him. But he wants to find out what's breaking the planets first.

    This extra speed to things would explain some of the odd urgency that so badly contrasts with a clumsy, slow-as-molasses monster that has a hard time chasing a wounded starship at 1/3 impulse. Quite possibly the DDM both moves swiftly and makes extremely short work of star systems - until a starship buzzes it and makes it drop out of the flow. Indeed, Decker's constant harassing of the monster during the episode might be the only reason it didn't jump to the next system at warp 12, and then proceed from the edges of Milky Way to the doorstep of Earth in a matter of days.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  9. Maurice

    Maurice Fact Trekker Premium Member

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    Spock being Spock if he said it came from another galaxy he meant it came from another galaxy, which he just did not name.

    FYI, the original idea was that it took a while for the "eater" to destroy a planet:
    Screen Shot 2020-11-28 at 6.22.43 PM.png
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2020
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  10. Maurice

    Maurice Fact Trekker Premium Member

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    BTW, digging through the story outline and scripts for this reveals a lot of details on things which are only sketched in the aired episode, like that Spinrad indeed meant neutron star-like "collapsed matter" when he wrote "neutronium," and Decker gives a rather detailed account of what happened to his ship step by step.

    In short, they went in to study the thing, figuring they could warp off if necessary, but didn't anticipate the "eater" weaponry, which slammed through their "screens" and knocked out the "screen generators", and without the screens the antimatter in the warp pods collapsed into neutronium (don't ask how) and in a later draft, were drained of energy, which is why they could not escape on warp drive. After the ship was hammered into a wreck he says the thing ignored them once they powered down everything but life support, but he thinks the transporter use to beam the crew down to the third planet caught its attention and it came back and took another shot at the ship, stranding him. Then it spent several days blowing the third planet apart while he watched.

    Unlike the finished episode, Decker had been clearer about his intentions with the shuttle. He was hoping to damage its guts. The slowness of the various ships' speeds were something Justman griped about as he repeatedly suggested cutting off the script.

    EDIT: Spock says "isotope dating" indicates the "eater" my be as much as three BILLION years old.

    And stuff.
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2020
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  11. Commishsleer

    Commishsleer Commodore Commodore

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    Think this would have been good to include so explain Decker's guilt even more.

    Dwarf galaxies are legitimate galaxies. So now I'm being a proper fan - if we could find where the Doomsday Machine fight took place in the Milky way then we could actually find the nearest "another" galaxy to it.

    Can we blame Sulu for his rubbish calculations that led Spock to believe it came from out of the galaxy if it didn't.
    Who knows the programming of the machine anyway? It could have been programmed to seek out a certain type of solar system based on who knows what criteria. Number of planets, % of minerals, number of moons, etc and then destroy it and then destroy or neighbouring systems.
    Yet another crazy planet destroying machine out of control.
     
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  12. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Dwarf galaxies weren't recognized in galaxy classification schemes that were accepted back in 1967. From http://pages.astronomy.ua.edu/keel/galaxies/classify.html:

    Basic references on classification: for the Hubble system, see the Hubble Atlas, Revised Shapley Ames Catalog, Sandage-Bedke NASA atlas, and Carnegie Atlas of Galaxies. Luminosity classification of spirals was described by van den Bergh in ApJ 131, 215 (1960) and ApJ 131, 558 (1960); the NASA atlas includes many examples. de Vaucouleurs (1977, Yale conference p. 43) discusses comparison of classification with quantitative parameters. Dwarf galaxies were not included in these original schemes; see Sandage and Binggeli 1984 (AJ 89, 919).​

    I judge dialog in Star Trek based on the state of knowledge when it was written and based on the dramatic function it has in relation to the rest of the episode. Since Spock does not qualify the term "galaxy," he means it in the same way that he and Decker mean it when they refer to our galaxy: the machine came from a galaxy, not necessarily one with precisely the same astronomical classification as the Milky Way's, but in general terms a galaxy just like ours.

    Because Spock and the Enterprise scientists analyzed the course of the machine and determined that it came from another galaxy, I think that it is likely that they and Spock had a particular galaxy or at least galaxy group in mind when Spock reported to Kirk about it. As to what they had in mind, they would have tracked its origin to a structure that would have been classified as a galaxy or group of galaxies according to the state of the art of astronomy in 1967, not 2020, and certainly not 2267. I find it hard to believe that Spock would say it came from another galaxy without reason; if he did not have a theory as to its point of origin, or in other words, if there was nothing known along the course it probably had when it entered our galaxy, I think he would have left it at some unknown location outside our own galaxy.
     
  13. johnnybear

    johnnybear Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The Cloaking Device would have been handed over to the Starfleet science departments! And then the treaty that forbade them the use of the invisibility technology!
    JB
     
  14. Henoch

    Henoch Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    Did the DDM really have to travel that far to get to our galaxy? Galaxies are not stationary. The Milky Way galaxy is currently in the process of cannibalizing the Sagittarius Dwarf Elliptical Galaxy and the Canis Major Dwarf Galaxy. Just wait for Andromeda!
     
  15. BK613

    BK613 Commodore Commodore

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    In 1967, these were the closest known galaxies to the Solar System. They are satellite galaxies of the Milky Way. They would have been classified under Hubble's nomenclature as irregular or elliptical galaxies. Dates are discovery year and distances are in 1000s of light-years (kly). Any of they would fit the phrase "from another galaxy," especially in the 1960s.
    Large Magellanic Cloud..................163 kly
    Small Magellanic Cloud...................206
    Ursa Minor Dwarf (1955).................206
    Draco Dwarf(1954).........................258
    Sculptor Dwarf Galaxy(1937)..........287
    Fornax Dwarf(1938)........................460
    Leo II (1950)...................................701
    Leo I (1950)....................................820​
    So if you are just going by 1960s knowledge then there are closer candidates than Andromeda (Note that the first five on that list are 7% to 12% the distance to Andromeda (2233 kly).)
     
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  16. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    As I should have said in my original post that hit on the point that Spock did not qualify the word "galaxy," that also would tend to suggest that Spock wasn't talking about a satellite galaxy either (of our galaxy). The concept that the machine could have been 3 billion years old supports this, too.

    edit - I also call into question the names on that list. Certainly, at least some of these objects were understood to be galaxies in 1967, possibly even all of them. But were all of the names in that table the accepted names for the objects in 1967? I doubt it. For example, in 1950, what we now call the Sculptor Dwarf Galaxy was called the Sculptor System [http://adsabs.harvard.edu/full/1950Obs....70..144T].
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2020
  17. BK613

    BK613 Commodore Commodore

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    ^^Yep, those are modern names for those galaxies.

    As for Spock needing to differentiate, I guess we'll agree to disagree. I see no reason for him to qualify the term galaxy: Any galaxy, dwarf, satellite or otherwise fits his statement.
     
  18. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I'm basically just saying that if they'd tracked it back to a satellite of our galaxy, he'd have said that, instead of emphasizing that it came from outside. :shrug:

    But yeah, agree to disagree.
     
  19. BK613

    BK613 Commodore Commodore

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  20. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Fleet Admiral Admiral

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