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Thread: Gravity Guns and Solid Slugs.. Will it work?

  1. #31
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    Hey folks,
    According to TOS the nevigation delflector actually projected out ahead of the ship and cleared a path. It is likely that the slug throuwer would work if luached from another vector.After all, ships seem to ram each other without the navigatorion deflectors getting in the way. I'd have the weapon do damage as per a ramming object. Probably Max damage would be for a Size 1 object at .98c.

    I ran a species (the TORDON) who used a similar weapon (rail gun) that way. They were rather nasty until the PCs though up some decent counter measures. A few are: tractor beams, travelling at high speed, and counterfire.

  2. #32
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    Considering that all the ships in trek have artifical gravity, a gravitiy rail gun is probably just as easy to make in TREK as a magnetic one.

    The show does have Transporters and Dyson spheres, I wouldn't worry about how practical the design is. It's good enough to work in TREK.

  3. #33
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    Deus-ex-machina is reference to any dramatic device that miraculously saves the day at the last minute, with no prior indication that it exists. 'Deus-ex-.357' is a pun referring a .357 magnum.

    As far as weapons accords and the like, the APEX system would likely have a unique energy signal that, if the opponent knows of it, they can scan for it. If it's gravity based, there may be other side effects ... what would a concentrated gravity field of that nature do to your ship's warp field, for example?

    As a narrator, you've got a number of possibilities:

    - The gun works consistently and effectively.
    - The gun doesn't work at all.
    - The gun works consistently, but with varied results.
    - The gun works once, perfectly, but fails thereafter due to misaligned or burnt out components.
    - The gun works consistently and effectively, BUT has a resulting side effect that is less than ideal (loss of warp power, etc. for x minutes).

    And I'm sure there are a few other variations. I didn't include 'the gun blows up and kills everyone' because that would effectively end the campaign.

    Bob



  4. #34
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    Aight, as the head engineer on klingermann's ship , "The Fenris" , this is my fear of the weapon. As it has been said here over and over again there has to be a side effect. What I see happening is if the weapon was designed in a coil and the gravity fields were as powerful as we have been talking (since we can talk about this IRL and not here), the sets of fields near the end would be in huge multipliers of earths gravity. What I am figuring is this: wouldn't you run the risk of inadvertantly creating a singularity in the middle of these gravity coils if you got too over zealous with this weapon? Not to mention the adverse effects that could happen to the surrounding equipment/ hull. Don't get me wrong Klingermann, I want our ship to have this thing as bad as anyone,but there are some simple things we gotta get out of the way.

    Personally I think this gun should work for this reason: our main goal is to make a gravotational field just short of a singularity, which adds in the risk, and we all know that a blackhole sucks light in like it aint jack, so a 30 lb shell would easily reach near c speeds in such an environment. As for navigational deflectors, I think a little planning before hand can bypass that by calculating the angels at which the deflector deflects objects comming towards it. As it's name implies, it just deflects, it isn't a "remove from the equation of realtiy" dish. If you took a little more time to figure out the exact trajectory to hit the deflector field at, you could almost use it to your advantage. ESPECIALLY in a confrontation with multiple ships, and knowing our tactical officer aboard the Fenris, I can see him bouncing a shell traveling near the speed of light off of a couple of ships deflector arrays like a pinball untill somehting got hurt.

    On the otherhand, mounting a phaser in-line of the cannon is pretty feasable , methinks, to actually disapate the deflection field so that the shell may travel through it unhindered.

    But thats all for my input at this time, back to working on the impulse engines.....

    NullZero (A.K.A Verr)

  5. #35
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    Red face

    Good to see you on the boards, Null! As you can see the topic has been a hot point of debate ever since I started it up and there are no clear answers to some of the questions raised and either support or outright acceptance of others. Some issue however are supported by cannon and the issue of creating a temporary sigularity is one of them.

    Bear in mind that these generators work in a casacading effect with the longest duration of activation being taken on by the weakest wells and the shortest duration being handled by the the last generators the slug reaches. These last generators will create extremely intense gravity, perhaps even mimicking that of a singularity but then a again perhaps not for a guesstimated time (I love that word, guesstimated) of .01-.001 seconds. Would that even be long enough to create a singularity? I doubt it, but maybe.

    Secondly let's say that it does in fact create a singularity for perhaps a tenth to one one hundredths of a second. Even if it does, there is substantial proof to show that Voyager, with it's tritanium hull plating can withstand the pressure of a black hole for at least a few seconds without being crushed and even crashing into an ice planet at high impulse (sure the crew died, but the hull actually was fine!).

    If the cannon's barrel is contructed from a simililar material to that at at greater thickness (say 6-8'thick or more) it should be able to take it and that my friend is why we need all the ore we can grab!

    ------------------
    -End of Line

  6. #36
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    As I understand the Subspace weaponry, it creates a tear in subspace which focuses itself on the target ships warp core. The warp drive effectively becomes a beacon and a tear opens, doing a great deal of damage, because it ignore the shields.
    Now a ship can dump its core to avoid the worst of the damage, however, during combat this may be plain suicide.
    Secondly, if a ship were to go to warp to "outrun" the tear, it would drag it across the distance it travels.(Ripping space as it goes along ).
    As for a possible manhunt occuring, highly unlikely during a war, one maquis ship flying around blowing away the Dominion may be overlooked as it may be beneficial to the Federation.

  7. #37

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    <font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Klingermann:
    These last generators will create extremely intense gravity, perhaps even mimicking that of a singularity but then a again perhaps not for a guesstimated time (I love that word, guesstimated) of .01-.001 seconds. Would that even be long enough to create a singularity? I doubt it, but maybe.
    </font>
    My un-educated opinion is that an unshielded singularity would compress both ship and crew in that time frame...

    As for shielding. I hope your players are friendly with the Romulan Star Navy...



    ------------------
    DanG.

    "Hi, I'm Commander Troy McClure, you might remember me from other academy training holo-simulations as, Abandon Ship, the quickest way out, and I sense danger, 101 things you dont need a Betazoid to know..."

    http://www.theventure.freeserve.co.uk

  8. #38

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    Hi guys, I'm new to the Boards. I think your on to something here, but I also think you've got several hurdles to overcome. I would, if I was your Narrator, make this an extended test for both theory and construction between you and your engineer Nullzero. Somewhere of the magnitude of 150 points for theory because if it was something simple, someone else would have thought of it. For construction, I would set that around 75 or so depending on how readily available materials are. As for rationalizing it, it's a game, the mechanics are set up to where if you meet the extended test, you don't have to really theorise out how it works, just come up with a real basic layout for your narrator and say, "I made the extended test.....finally." Then you can just BS something for your players and the rest of us on this list. That's the beauty of Star Trek, no matter how unfeasible or unbelievable something is, they figure out ways to do that something in every episode almost.

    Was it Null that mentioned your Tactical Officer? Well anyway, maybe you should brainstorm with him and see how he would recommend you use the weapon system. It sounds like he's a little....overzealous...from the brief personality insight given. That isn't particularly fitting with Starfleet personnel though, but then again you said you are Maquis.

  9. #39

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    I can only see this gravity weapon as a modification for Romulan Naval Vessels, since they already operate on a ARTIFICIAL singularity. One, the power needs for something like this are likely to be massive by todays standards, but by trek standards aren't that large at all. Second, this idea intrigues me. It seems that as an add-on weapon it would be next to useless. However, as the primary focus of a Single System Defense System(I.E.StarBase) it could achieve catastrophic power levels. Even if the damage done to the vessel is not that much, think about the fact that the slug, which could weigh a significant amount is being accellerated to near-light speeds. Add in the proper equations. What would the mass and/or energy be of a 20 ton slug, accelerated to .9 C be? and could a Trek Starship compensate for an impact of that caliber. It need not penetrate the hull for that energy transfer to at least knock the ship off course at sub-light speeds. And as for accellerating something to those velocities, am I to belive that if we can accelerate a particle to a significant percentage of light-speed, today, that they cannot do the same to a 5 or 10 ton slug in Trek? Thank you for your time

  10. #40
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    Lightbulb

    There are some very interesting points being raised here. If it does in fact create a temporary singularity (some thing that extensive testing in a holodeck would prove) there would definitely be a need for some form of structural ingerity field as well as a normal force field or shielding system to keep it in check so it 1.) wouldn't kill us all, and 2.) Not effect the internal mechanics.

    I like that!

    I agree with and have always thought that the bigger the installation you have to use this with the more firepower you could unleash. I have always figured that if I can get a working gun for our ship that I would give the data on it to Maquis command and assist them in arming one of our bases or installations with a much larger version. It would definitely come in handy and at the very least look friggin' scary to have a version that could launch a ten ton shell because I know just the one I've been working on for the ship looks scary enough.

    My narrarator is working on a system for us to use in order to develop and create the gun. When the time comes to start work I'll let you guys know what he has decided to do.

  11. #41
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    >What would the mass and/or energy be of a 20 ton slug, accelerated to .9 C be?

    You can do this the hard way or the easy way. You can calculate the mass-energy by ke=1/2mv^2, then convert to reletavistic mass, THEN look up the shield power output in the TNG technical manual. But even then the answer would be unsatisfying: given the right leverage, a small power output of shielding can protect from a large power impact (if for example an active deflector diverted it slightly early enough for the missle to miss) and a large poer shielding might fail to protect from a small power impact (if for example the power is spread over the whole hull and not directly where the impact occurs).

    Fortuantely there is an easy way. 20 tons sounds like hull size two. We have rules in the core book for hull size two things hitting starships. Look in the section labeled "Ramming."

  12. #42
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    I agree with Diamond, the easy way to do this is to treat the weapon like a ram attack from a starship. Base Damage on the Size and velocity, as per the Core Rules or Spacedock, depening on which system you prefer.

    I'd probably put some sort of upper limit on the damage, and/or accuracy/power/speed penalties for larger objects. Otherwise they will wind up doning more damage than photon torpedoes.

    [This message has been edited by tonyg (edited 09-17-2001).]

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  14. #44
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    I do see this as a superweapon, more of a variant technology.

    I don't believe the mass weapon should inflict more damage than a photorp. Sort of like comparing dropping a rock on something with a nuke.

    As for limits:

    1) Probably limit this weapon to Size 1. Greater than that and it ould be significantly more difficult to get the rock up to any speed. I'd use the tractor beam costs as a guide. As the mass/size of he rock increases, so would the power drain. The exact game math depends on it you are using the basic rules or SPACEDOCK. Getting the rock to high sublight veloticty is going to cost power, especially for SIze 2 or greater rocks.

    2) The weapon can't be guided. THis means that f the target vessel can make a sudden couse correction it will be safe.

    3) THe rock should move on the board at a rate depending on it's velcoity. Even it travelling at .99c, it will take over 10 seconds to reach a target 3 million km away. a ship. This makes it fairly ineffective at moving objects beyond 100,000 km or so. Of course against a fairly stationary target, like a planet, this isn't a problem.

    4) The rock is subject to tractor beams.

    5) The rock can be targeted at fired at like any other object (and don't forget the rock size modifier). Again this limits the weapon's range, since the longer the rock is out there the more time opponents have to blast it into bits.
    Fore basic rules a rock would have 20 SP per SIze.
    In Spacedock you might want to convert mt to a size and use around 300 SU's per Size. Natually you can vary thins for really large, or small rocks.


  15. #45
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    OK, I am goinna impliment my 2 gold pressed latinum worth again. Many of you will most likely laugh at this whole story I am about to lay out, others of you will understand what I am talking about after you wipe the laughing tears away from your eyes.

    All foul language that took place will be substituted in ().

    Aight, heres how it goes. A while back in a chat, the local colledge physics nerd type was talking about some equation for extra cedit he had to do. So being the smart (behind) that I am, I couldn't help but say "So Marek, how fast would the (dung) really hit the fan?" of course this got a round of snickers. An hour later no one could type straight or see straight for that matter. Some how we actually started calculating out how fast it would really hit the fan. Over the course of this physics fun, the mass of this "pooperoid" as we called it, gained a mass of 1 million metric tons and was launched from the moon at an acceleration of 1k/sec. We went as far as to factor in the zero G effects and radical temprature effects of space on this massive flying ball of (dung). This turned it into a very...well.....liquidy mix. In the end it would have hit the eart at something like a few thousand klicks a sec and the force at which it would hit the Earth was astronomical (yes, those who are fast to pick up on bad puns may start having a field day now, they were flying like mad then as well). No doubt that the force a 1 metric ton ball of half frozen pooperoid would undoubtfully assimilate the world into it's mass easily.

    The point I am trying to make here is that sure this is a massive ball of (fecies) we are talking about here, but the principles are the same. There would not be a trace of Earth after this thing hit and needless to say it wasn't even close to the speed of light. Now a 30 kilo slug fired at near the speed of light would most likely have a similar effect on a large surface. The damage would be very concentrated and the concussion would be awe inspiring. Which is a part of this I believe many are leaving out. Concusive forces can be very dangerous themselves. Certain high calibur guns (which I will not go into naming off) will take a persons life armored or not from the sheer concussion of the shell hitting their body armor. In some instances the concussion has been enough to turn their insides to almost liquid. Now lets think about that with a 30 kilo slug going near the speed of light. What if the nav deflectors blocked it once? I bet the rebound from the impact of such a shell would insure that they wouldn't be capable of doing it twice. It would have to send a transfer of energy right into that deflector. And what if it hit the hull? Does anyone even want to begin imagining the "ding" it would make? Which would undoubtedly resonate through the entire ship, most likely in the form of a sonic blast of some degree. A metallic hull taking a metallic slug at near the speed of light would be a pretty big ding.

    I will hunt down some physics people I know and see if they can calculate out the exact force that this shell would have. After that we can compare to existing scales of energy in the trek universe and see exactly how useful this would be.

    If you guys have not noticed yet, we are a very indepth groupe of people when we play.

    And as for our tac officer, he is pure maquis to an extreme. Hates Starfleet with a passion and don't dare bring up the cardassians. The more destructive the better for him. He is pretty agressive, just the way any good rebel tac officer should be ^_^

    [This message has been edited by NullZero (edited 09-27-2001).]

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