Alternate Lab Ships?

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
heron61
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Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby heron61 » Mon Jul 08, 2019 3:37 am

We have two types of 200 ton traders (Free & Far), standard and Serpent Class Scouts, and I've seen a few variant Yacht designs, but I have yet to see variant Lab Ships other than the Aslan Hkiyrerao research vessel. Are there any other 3I Lab Ship variations published or otherwise available anywhere?
AndrewW
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby AndrewW » Mon Jul 08, 2019 5:19 am

Supplement 10: Merchants and Cruisers has the Galileo Research Vessel (800 tons).
NOLATrav
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby NOLATrav » Mon Jul 08, 2019 2:41 pm

Also the Donosev Scout vessel, a mothballed or retired one could make a good refurbished lab ship. Although it’s not the intended mission profile.
Pyromancer
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby Pyromancer » Mon Jul 08, 2019 2:58 pm

Saenger: A 1000 dton research ship that can be separated into two 500 dton parts:
https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/22 ... ip-Saenger
Condottiere
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby Condottiere » Mon Jul 08, 2019 5:18 pm

Presumably a refurbished Azhanti.
Linwood
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby Linwood » Tue Jul 09, 2019 11:38 am

Or a refurbished Leviathan?

Pretty much any civilian ship design can be converted to a lab ship with some work. You’ll have to think about the intended mission and whether the vessel is purpose-built for a specific mission or meant to be more flexible. A general-purpose lab vessel might make do with drones and small craft optimized for specific environments, perhaps with modular science packages; the main vessel would provide quarters, labs, workshops, and small craft space.

My players are currently running around in an ex-Scout ship optimized for work around inner-system worlds and near hot interstellar objects, so it has heat and radiation shielding. I doubt most general-purpose lab ships would be equipped similarly, but they might carry a pinnace or cutter equipped that way.
Baldo
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby Baldo » Tue Jul 09, 2019 12:43 pm

Linwood wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 11:38 am
A general-purpose lab vessel might make do with drones and small craft optimized for specific environments, perhaps with modular science packages; the main vessel would provide quarters, labs, workshops, and small craft space.
Deepnight Endeavour comes to mind...
Reynard
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby Reynard » Tue Jul 09, 2019 2:44 pm

I can see a lab ship built for very long term research in remote locations. This can include a Collector system to reduce power plant and fuel space. Recharging the jump energy over long periods is not a problem. Solar panels should be a must for long endurance operations. Only real weapon needed is a laser drill. If an area is dangerous but needs be accessed, security vessels make more sense. Multi-environment Space has a variety of uses for sample collection and environment simulation. There could be a separate Sensor Suite with life scanner analysis and mineral detection. Have a few Base Modules as remote planetary facilities for an orbiting lab ship acting as the prime facility. Upgrade lab space with a variety of Scientific Operation suites. The Library and Briefing Room should be part of any research structure.
Moppy
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby Moppy » Tue Jul 09, 2019 4:12 pm

You'd generally convert a freighter or liner, or carry porta-cabins, or buy the standard model.

Purpose built lab ship implies big budget or highly specialised equipment is needed. I think such a ship would likely be custom built or fitted out for 1 specific type of research.
phavoc
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby phavoc » Tue Jul 09, 2019 6:41 pm

I guess it depends on the needs of the lab ship. If you are moving basic lab equipment to a site then you should be able to retrofit any ship with terminals, computers, etc. Sealed labs with bio-rooms and such would be more difficult, but certainly within the realms of a refit.

If you had to add external items, such as large sensors or antennas, or make large engineering changes like new fusion plants, experimental engeins, etc, then you might want to look at a purposes-built, or at a minimum heavily refitted regular ship.
ChalkLine
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby ChalkLine » Wed Jul 10, 2019 4:00 am

Moppy wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 4:12 pm
You'd generally convert a freighter or liner, or carry porta-cabins, or buy the standard model.

Purpose built lab ship implies big budget or highly specialised equipment is needed. I think such a ship would likely be custom built or fitted out for 1 specific type of research.
Real-world Oceanographic research vessels are rented out as needed. They are specialist sensor-carrying hulls with lab space and accommodations.

(Now there's a job for some PCs!)
Moppy
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby Moppy » Wed Jul 10, 2019 11:16 am

ChalkLine wrote:
Wed Jul 10, 2019 4:00 am
Moppy wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 4:12 pm
You'd generally convert a freighter or liner, or carry porta-cabins, or buy the standard model.

Purpose built lab ship implies big budget or highly specialised equipment is needed. I think such a ship would likely be custom built or fitted out for 1 specific type of research.
Real-world Oceanographic research vessels are rented out as needed. They are specialist sensor-carrying hulls with lab space and accommodations.

(Now there's a job for some PCs!)
Apart from the few with ICES 209 or equivalent, there's not much specialised about the hull/propulsion that you might not easily find in the fishing and offshore industries. I'm prepared to bet that a not insignificant fraction of RV are converted stern trawlers.

In Traveller, I think hull specialisation will be rad shielding and hostile atmosphere/submersible? Any additions to that list would be appreciated. I think high jump drive (jump-5 and upwards) would be highly unusual in Imperial Space and might count. For some reason you're supposed to jump-3 twice instead.
Old School
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby Old School » Wed Jul 10, 2019 12:05 pm

I envision the Traveller universe as making extensive use of modular components. With the ability to bring your own power for your specific need, shipping containers (not necessarily the size we use today) can be fitted out for anything. All the vessel needs is the appropriate drives to accommodate the mission. Heck of a lot more cost efficient to load your laboratory on a chartered freighter than to build a specialized ship.

Might not cover every case, but would cover most of them.

Going BIG with this concept (and in the opposite direction of efficiency), the element class cruisers use 2,600 dton pods. Fit one of those out for research purposes. Plenty of room for eggheads and all their gear.
Linwood
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby Linwood » Thu Jul 11, 2019 12:59 am

<lights flicker on the command deck>

<small shudder through the deck. Alarm blares....>

“Ensign, get your sorry butt down to Module 4 and tell those sons-of-beaked-monkeys eggheads to shut their frakking experiments down until AFTER we’ve recovered our fighters!!!!”
GypsyComet
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby GypsyComet » Wed Jul 17, 2019 5:11 am

Both T20 and T4 used different hulls for the Lab Ship. The T4 hull is rather... flashy for science, and has the usual T4 deckplan problem. The T20 hull has a fan deckplan, I think, but nothing official.
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ChalkLine
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby ChalkLine » Thu Aug 01, 2019 10:29 am

Here's my take on a repurposed Type R for research. Maybe it could be called a Type R-L

It has had the launch deleted and a fuel tank faired-in fuel tank replace it. There's another fuel tank closing in the rear cargo, all up giving the vessel two jump-1s. The rear cargo bay and half of the middle cargo bay have had a mid-level deck placed in them and the area given over to laboratories. A new bulkhead has been placed forward of these sections. The bulkhead between the aft and middle cargo bays has had the large folding hatches removed and a stiffening section placed in it (this is known as a 'web' to be technical'). No other bulkhead has been modified.
The low berths have been deleted and avionics/sensors upgraded to Type L standards. The extra space is now an EVA ready room and is also the main ship's locker. The very forward cargo bay is now the hangar for the air/raft and the ATV as well as space for the cargo bots (if any).
Please note I din't put any doors in the labs, something I'll get around to doing one day. The labs are set out in a mix of orderly and haphazard to give it a bit of a unique shape, to reflect it's retrofit situation as well as to make it just a bit more interesting in shipboard combat.
It should roughly be equal to the Type L in the Mongoose 2 High Guard apart from obvious differences.
This ship would be more suitable for planetary sciences and exploration, something I would think is more up a player character's alley.
If I was giving this ship out I'd have it the property of a university and have players actually do research and publish results. In may games players simply use their Type Ls for cargo, something not really the reason why they are issued on mustering out. This means they may constantly have to fend off academic rival's attempts to wrest control of the ship from them for their own projects. This could be use to the GM's advantage when they want the players to be without a ship for a while. It also lets the GM create the university that owns the ship and the rival scientists as part of the backdrop of the game.

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Moppy
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Re: Alternate Lab Ships?

Postby Moppy » Thu Aug 01, 2019 10:52 am

In my opinion you probably want to keep the launch for planetary exploration. You're going to need a "air truck" or submarine to go out and deploy your remote sensor stations or whatever. I guess you could use air/rafts but the launch is already there, and heavier. Research Vessels today tend to have all sorts of boats and drones.

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