Low tech ships - Need help

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
baithammer
Banded Mongoose
Posts: 370
Joined: Wed May 31, 2017 2:21 am

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby baithammer » Tue Nov 28, 2017 4:35 am

I don't see much need for Launch Tubes or Recovery Decks. They are very expensive and have very few use cases. Even without them you can still launch and recover all craft in a few minutes.
Launch tubes are far faster for launching up to 10 craft and can be done while both craft are maneuvering.
It takes one round to manoeuvre a craft into ‘firing’ position
within a launch tube but, once there, it takes a single
combat round to release up to ten craft it into space or an
atmosphere
and
and both the mothership and smaller craft may
expend Thrust and make attack rolls during this round.
Compared to Docking Space
It takes D3 rounds to release or recover a ship of less
than 2,000 tons, during which time neither ship can
expand any Thrust or make any attack rolls. Larger ships
take 1D rounds.
And hangar
It normally takes 2D minutes for
the auxiliary ship to enter or leave the larger ship.
Forced Linkage Clamps are a poor way to transport ships as the clamps aren't meant to detach while latched on the craft, supposed to be used to ensure a boarding action can be taken.

Docking Clamps would the more efficient vs the Forced Linkage Clamps, but both are inferior for launching.
AnotherDilbert
Duck-Billed Mongoose
Posts: 2458
Joined: Wed Dec 23, 2015 2:49 pm
Location: Sweden

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby AnotherDilbert » Tue Nov 28, 2017 2:18 pm

A Clamp carrier can launch all fighters in 3 turns.
A Docking Space carrier can launch all fighters in 3 turns.
A Docking Space + Tube carrier can launch all fighters in 2 turns (while under thrust).

If we build a simple carrier using DivineWraths assumptions we end up with something like this:

Clamp:
Image

Docking Space + Tube:
Image

So the Tube carrier is thrice the size and four times the cost. Is that really worth it for slightly faster launch time?
Condottiere
Chief Mongoose
Posts: 5523
Joined: Mon Sep 23, 2013 8:23 pm

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby Condottiere » Wed Nov 29, 2017 11:06 am

Sometimes you want or need to launch your fighters in a hurry; and recover them.

Image

But there's a critical mass before you install launch tubes in my estimation, escort carriers and down don't have them, since their air wings wouldn't justify having them installed..
baithammer
Banded Mongoose
Posts: 370
Joined: Wed May 31, 2017 2:21 am

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby baithammer » Wed Nov 29, 2017 11:41 am

Docking clamps have a number of drawbacks.

1.) While ships are docked the host ship is considered unstreamlined, making refueling rather dangerous.
2.) Each fighter requires d3 rounds to launch or recover so they end up taking even longer to form up a squadron.
3.) Docking clamps provide no access to the main ship and fighters aren't designed for long duration occupation. ( The 50t heavy fighter that is more a boat than fighter is a different story.)
4.) Neither launching ship nor fighter can expend thrust during launch making the lot a sitting target.
5.) Fighters are exposed to enemy fire and if the launch ship evades it loses the ability to launch for a turn.

In order to be effective outside of murdering pirates, a carrier is better off with docking spaces / Launch tube(s) / Recovery Deck as the number of fighter required to be effective is rather high. ( And a few hangars for maintenance.)

Could be used by jeep carriers but that is a whole different situation.
Condottiere
Chief Mongoose
Posts: 5523
Joined: Mon Sep 23, 2013 8:23 pm

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby Condottiere » Wed Nov 29, 2017 12:03 pm

You can build in multiple launch bays, that do have one advantage, they can be any size.

Image
AnotherDilbert
Duck-Billed Mongoose
Posts: 2458
Joined: Wed Dec 23, 2015 2:49 pm
Location: Sweden

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby AnotherDilbert » Wed Nov 29, 2017 1:24 pm

baithammer wrote: Docking clamps have a number of drawbacks.
Oh, certainly, but they are cheap, allowing us to deploy more fighters...

1. The carrier is unstreamlined while carrying craft in clamps, but drop the craft off and you can refuel or land normally.
2. Each fighter takes the same D3 rounds to launch, so 3 rounds for all of them. The tube launched fighters would come out in a consecutive stream, so would also require some time to form up.
3. A carrier generally has quite a lot of air locks, with connecting tubes. It is not that far fetched to allow them to mate with fighter cockpits.
4. & 5. Why would we plan to launch into combat? With decent sensors, or a CAP, we would generally detect an enemy fleet far beyond Long range (where missiles can hit within 3 rounds). A fragile carrier should never come under enemy guns, it should launch its fighters against the enemy and run away.
Note that the carriers can kill each other with a single salvo of missiles from no-cost fixed mounts. If the carriers come under fire, they die, immediately.


Recovery decks are even more expensive than launch tubes, since they take the same space as a tube, but can only recover one craft per round.

A carrier with tubes and recovery deck enough to recover the fighters in 3 rounds would cost ~10 times as much as the clamp carrier above:
Image
AnotherDilbert
Duck-Billed Mongoose
Posts: 2458
Joined: Wed Dec 23, 2015 2:49 pm
Location: Sweden

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby AnotherDilbert » Wed Nov 29, 2017 1:39 pm

DivineWrath wrote: By the way, single cockpit with fixed mount, does the pilot suffer a penalty for controlling movement and the fixed mount?
I would assume so:
Core, p59 wrote:A Traveller can try to do two or more things at once, like firing a spacecraft’s weapons while also flying, ...
For every extra thing the Traveller is doing, the level of difficulty for each task is made one level harder.

The fixed mount is also a disadvantage in dogfighting (the normal mode of combat for fighters):
Core, p162 wrote:A draw means that neither ship may attack the other with fixed weapons. The winner may choose to place his opponent’s ship in a fire arc of his choice and may choose which of the opposing ship’s fire arcs his own vehicle lies in.
baithammer
Banded Mongoose
Posts: 370
Joined: Wed May 31, 2017 2:21 am

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby baithammer » Wed Nov 29, 2017 3:12 pm

Tubes launch all 10 fighters on the same turn, there is a turn of loading all 10 in sequence however.
The fixed mount is also a disadvantage in dogfighting (the normal mode of combat for fighters):
Since the dogfight rules specify the winner gets to choose where they're aiming and which arc the enemy is facing, there is no disadvantage for the fixed mount.

Not to mention first round allows the pilot to take the aid gunners action which reduces the penalty for multiple actions.
AnotherDilbert
Duck-Billed Mongoose
Posts: 2458
Joined: Wed Dec 23, 2015 2:49 pm
Location: Sweden

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby AnotherDilbert » Wed Nov 29, 2017 3:40 pm

baithammer wrote:
Wed Nov 29, 2017 3:12 pm
Since the dogfight rules specify the winner gets to choose where they're aiming and which arc the enemy is facing, there is no disadvantage for the fixed mount.
Not to the winner, no, but if you lose or draw the dogfight roll fixed mounts may not fire at all, but turrets can always fire.
baithammer
Banded Mongoose
Posts: 370
Joined: Wed May 31, 2017 2:21 am

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby baithammer » Thu Nov 30, 2017 1:41 am

Considering the loser in the dogfight can't fire in the first place and the point of the placing of the enemy arc is to ensure loss of movement points that could be used to evade.
Condottiere
Chief Mongoose
Posts: 5523
Joined: Mon Sep 23, 2013 8:23 pm

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby Condottiere » Thu Nov 30, 2017 6:16 am

Fixed mounts for energy weapons seems a chained event, since you have to line up your nose, presumably, with your target, though the targetting computer should be constantly informing you when something could be hit while you're jiggling about.
AnotherDilbert
Duck-Billed Mongoose
Posts: 2458
Joined: Wed Dec 23, 2015 2:49 pm
Location: Sweden

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby AnotherDilbert » Thu Nov 30, 2017 6:26 am

baithammer wrote: Considering the loser in the dogfight can't fire in the first place ,,,
Says who?

Only fixed mounts are restricted to firing arcs, not turrets.
phavoc
Cosmic Mongoose
Posts: 4029
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2008 6:13 pm

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby phavoc » Thu Nov 30, 2017 1:20 pm

Easy way to sidestep some of these restrictions is to build a flap top in space. Mechanical elevators can bring a ship inside or take the craft to the external flight deck. The ship would then land or take off by itself. Antigravity would provide the small craft with the ability to be part of the other ship and not fly off under the carriers acceleration or movement. As long as the fighter is faster than the carrier it can land while the carrier is under thrust (though not so much if it's radically maneuvering).

Elevators can be quite fast, so if you are running vacuum operations the small craft can easily be moved and raised/lowered. You can also pre-position small craft if you needed.

The rules don't envision this sort of operation, but as far as I can tell they violate none of them.
Condottiere
Chief Mongoose
Posts: 5523
Joined: Mon Sep 23, 2013 8:23 pm

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby Condottiere » Fri Dec 01, 2017 9:22 am

I thought about that.

You can embed grav plates on the hull, though you probably have a greater diminishing returns effect, but it seems unlikely that you neutralize the effects of acceleration, though you could conduct operations there like being effected like a strong wind, possibly with magnetic clamps for both smallcraft and personnel so that they don't get blown off.

As I recall, most dedicated carriers accelerate at two gees, though they might do it at half to one when anything's on their hull flight deck; being physically attached, I'd say that that would count towards total volume and effect performance, however slightly.
phavoc
Cosmic Mongoose
Posts: 4029
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2008 6:13 pm

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby phavoc » Fri Dec 01, 2017 2:15 pm

Condottiere wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 9:22 am
I thought about that.

You can embed grav plates on the hull, though you probably have a greater diminishing returns effect, but it seems unlikely that you neutralize the effects of acceleration, though you could conduct operations there like being effected like a strong wind, possibly with magnetic clamps for both smallcraft and personnel so that they don't get blown off.

As I recall, most dedicated carriers accelerate at two gees, though they might do it at half to one when anything's on their hull flight deck; being physically attached, I'd say that that would count towards total volume and effect performance, however slightly.
Grav plates inside a ship extend upwards at least 3m. Since we are talking about space, the fact that the small craft and even personnel are walking around on the flight 'deck' in a g-field means they accelerate at the same speed as the ship does. Ergo there is no effect to them as the ship moves. Since the grav plates also function as inertial dampeners, there is no Star Trekian throwing around of the people. It's great for dramatic TV effect, but in reality, if that were to occur, the people would be meat-paste on the walls when the ships accelerate to warp-speed. The Star Blazers tv show had some interesting designs, including multi-tiered decking to allow for more 'runways' - though that wouldn't be necessary.
Rikki Tikki Traveller
Cosmic Mongoose
Posts: 3314
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2007 3:20 pm
Location: Arlington, TX USA

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby Rikki Tikki Traveller » Fri Dec 01, 2017 8:58 pm

phavoc wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 1:20 pm
Easy way to sidestep some of these restrictions is to build a flap top in space. Mechanical elevators can bring a ship inside or take the craft to the external flight deck. The ship would then land or take off by itself. Antigravity would provide the small craft with the ability to be part of the other ship and not fly off under the carriers acceleration or movement. As long as the fighter is faster than the carrier it can land while the carrier is under thrust (though not so much if it's radically maneuvering).

Elevators can be quite fast, so if you are running vacuum operations the small craft can easily be moved and raised/lowered. You can also pre-position small craft if you needed.

The rules don't envision this sort of operation, but as far as I can tell they violate none of them.
Nothing says your launch tube isn't actually this design. The design got it's name from the original BattleStar Galactica TV show - that is the first time we saw that sort of design in a space show. The elevator would take a lot of space, probably about the same as a traditional Launch Tube.
My friends call me Richard.
You can call me Sir.
phavoc
Cosmic Mongoose
Posts: 4029
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2008 6:13 pm

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby phavoc » Fri Dec 01, 2017 9:27 pm

Rikki Tikki Traveller wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 8:58 pm
Nothing says your launch tube isn't actually this design. The design got it's name from the original BattleStar Galactica TV show - that is the first time we saw that sort of design in a space show. The elevator would take a lot of space, probably about the same as a traditional Launch Tube.
I would certainly hope not. A launch tube takes up 10x the size of the craft using it. You could go with say 4-6 elevators, which if just a single deck down would only need roughly the same displacement tonnage (or maybe 1.5 if you wanted to ensure plenty of space). Plus the idea is that with the elevators and outer hull flight deck you could station your fighters externally for alerts. The fighters, assuming you used grav plates on the flight deck, would remain stationary and not subject to G-forces and maneuvers of the ship - just like the meat bags inside. This means you could launch all, one or any variation on the theme. Actual flight ops today on a carrier has fighters moving from hangar to flight deck around five minutes or so. A ship that had A/G would be able to move much faster, thus you could easily do 2/turn.

Plus, as others have pointed out, total surprise is difficult in space, so assuming you had a little bit of warning you could easily pre-position your entire wing externally ready for launch as needed.
Sigtrygg
Lesser Spotted Mongoose
Posts: 769
Joined: Sat Aug 12, 2006 9:23 am

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby Sigtrygg » Fri Dec 01, 2017 10:15 pm

Ever see Space:Above and Beyond?
Condottiere
Chief Mongoose
Posts: 5523
Joined: Mon Sep 23, 2013 8:23 pm

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby Condottiere » Sat Dec 02, 2017 8:21 am

As far as I know, you have two basic locations for aircraft carrier elevators, along the edges or in the middle.

So the middle ones go straight through the hull, while the edge ones push the smallcraft out the side, where lift elevates them to the hull flight deck.


Image

As I recall, the enemy carriers at least in the first version, were based on Japanese carrier designs, not unusual, as with short take offs, you could launch directly from the hangars.
baithammer
Banded Mongoose
Posts: 370
Joined: Wed May 31, 2017 2:21 am

Re: Low tech ships - Need help

Postby baithammer » Sat Dec 02, 2017 1:03 pm

Since tube launches 10 fighters in a single turn after 1 turn of loading, it wouldn't be an issue with 10x space for the launch speed. ( And with a full tunnel, makes it easier to ripple launch.)

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot] and 13 guests