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Subject: Battlestar Galactica poorly designed?
slowball    2/15/2005 3:37:59 AM
After watching the new Battlestar Galactica series I cruised by some fan websites. I saw a facetious comment that the landing bays of the Battlestar Galactica have giant signs on them saying 'attack here'. It went on to say that this major design defect should have been corrected from the original series design. I smiled at first having thought the same thing for years but upon further thought believe the design to be both sound and innovative. My take is that the design, with the landing bays being on struts away from the main hull, allows for the isolation of damage. Much like the engine pod design of the A-10. Landing bays/decks are always going to be a prime target no matter where you put them. They will always be more vulnerable than the rest of the hull since they need to allow access for fighters to land. By isolating the landing bays from the rest of the ship (and each other) you provide greater protection for the main hull and the other landing bay. Better to have fuel and munitions kept away from the main hull. This also allows guns on the main hull to cover the landing bays and flight path of fighters on final approach.
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Treadgar    To Alpha C   7/19/2007 8:09:10 AM
Estimates to Alpha Centauri (our nearest neighbor) are difficult to make right now because there are so many problems to overcome. I've heard of estimates of 40 years for something like a Bussard ram jet. Problems with that scenario is you have to build something that can last far longer than that. Velocities would be relativistic, say somewhere above half the speed of light, maybe even as high as .99 C. At those speeds a tiny grain of dust could be a big problem. There is talk of ice shields and electromagnetic force fields that impart a charge into small bits of cosmic debris that are then hopefully shunted off to the side. You'd have to be able to repair the ship in transit. You'd need some kind of advanced manufacturing capability supported by well equipped machine shops. I'm just giving some of the problems, one would be the crew, what kind of crew could you put together that could function effectively for so long? Even at half the speed of light you get significant time dilation effects. If they had secretly built a ship like this, then tomorrow they launch it for the heliopause and beyond, anyone reading this would likely be long gone before the ship arrived.

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Yimmy       7/19/2007 1:23:43 PM
I worked out when I made my previous post, that Alpha Centauri being 4.3 light years away, that at a speed of 3,000km's an hour, so around mach 2.8 (A space Mig 25?) it would take a little over 18 days to get there.

But then maths was never my strong point! :)

I think I used the figure for the speed of light as measured in meters per second, and forgot to transfer that to years a la light years.

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Treadgar       7/20/2007 9:13:37 AM
A photon leaving the sun would arrive at Alpha Centauri in approximately 4.3 years. That means no deceleration. A ship would have to accelerate to get there then decelerate to match velocities for in system transit. 18 days would mean some kind of warp drive, hyperspace, or some other type of FTL system.

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flamingknives       7/20/2007 1:06:33 PM
All the 18 days figure requires is to forget to multiply the distance by approximately 30,000,000 to account for a year being different to a second.

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Ehran       7/20/2007 1:20:04 PM
                           Rest Frame Time Elapsed
per Day on Ship
v/c                           Days        Years
0.0                           1.00         0.003
0.1                           1.01         0.003
0.2                           1.02         0.003
0.3                           1.05         0.003
0.4                           1.09         0.003
0.5                           1.15         0.003
0.6                           1.25         0.003
0.7                           1.40         0.004
0.8                           1.67         0.005
0.9                           2.29         0.006
0.95                          3.20         0.009
0.97                          4.11         0.011
0.99                          7.09         0.019
0.995                        10.01         0.027
0.999                        22.37         0.061
0.9999                       70.71         0.194
0.99999                     223.61         0.613
0.999999                    707.11         1.937
0.9999999                  2236.07         6.126
0.99999999                 7071.07        19.373
0.999999999               22360.68        61.262
0.9999999999              70710.68       193.728
0.99999999999            223606.79       612.621
0.999999999999           707114.60      1937.300
0.9999999999999         2235720.41      6125.261
0.99999999999999        7073895.38     19380.535
0.999999999999999      22369621.33     61286.634
at .5 C time dilation only amounts to 15% and doesn't hit 200% till about .88C
given the odds of us building a ship capable of hitting even the low end .5C any time 
soon i don't think time dilation is going to be a big concern.
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Yimmy       7/20/2007 2:51:56 PM

All the 18 days figure requires is to forget to multiply the distance by approximately 30,000,000 to account for a year being different to a second.

I know!

It's one of those really small and easy to make errors......

But one which would doubtless really upset the astronauts you just launched, when you phone and tell them of the mistake!

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Nichevo       7/23/2007 12:26:36 AM

Is there any reason why these space ships need a runway to take off and land?
Probably because at the time of the original show, the other station at the same time was showing "Black Sheep Squadron."  Keeping up with the Joneses, is my guess.

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ker       7/23/2007 12:41:24 PM

I agree with the ridiculousness of smoe Sci Fi show...I love em, but they make stupid decisions. 

Star's an unknown hostile planet...lets beam down the entire bridge crew, the Chief engineer, and 2 deaders with red shirts.

Space above and beyond...lets send in a squadron of Marine fighter pilots, have them park their Starfighters, have them gear up and fight as infantry...stupid use of resources...don't they have troop carriers and grunts?

Battlestar Galactica ..  again why use you precious fighter pilots as infantry?

Starship Troopers...horrible, horrible, horrible...The only time a trooper used aimed fire was to kill one of their own

I agree compleatly.  They do this because they want continuety of the cariters we love being in most of every show BUT they also want variety of settings and activitys.  Together that might build maximum interest for veiwers. 
Starship Troopers might be a little different.  They use their weapons like spears.  Almost always shooting bugs at close range with very long bursts.   This builds excitement and they can use unlimited plot manipulstion to get the star out alive.
They are fun to watch but frequently beyond sound examination.
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Treadgar    significance of 15%   8/11/2007 8:32:05 AM

“…at .5 C time dilation only amounts to 15% and doesn't hit 200% till about .88C

given the odds of us building a ship capable of hitting even the low end .5C any time

soon i don't think time dilation is going to be a big concern.”


Assuming we defy the odds and build a ship capable of .5C, you then have to ask the question 15% of what? For a mission to Alpha Centauri 15% may not be so much. Let’s go further out, say 11 light years away, 15% gets bigger, and therefore more significant.



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ker       12/10/2007 7:21:13 PM
12/7/07 air date.  The show had workers packed around a convair belt passing tubs of sand around that was being refined into fuel.  They can travle FTL (faster than light) but they can't make shoot to drop sand onto a convererbelt.  Also why generate gravity in a big balk material wearhouse?  To keep the dust down???
O.K. They wanted to show 18th centuary working conditions to make their statement on class conditions.  The sience at best plays second fiddle to the theam.
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