Ship Design Philosophy

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
Infojunky
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Infojunky » Sat Feb 08, 2014 10:57 pm

Condottiere wrote:Hulls - Exotic Materials

I wonder, if the starship isn't going to be used for atmospheric re-entry, if you could construct it out of hard wood?
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Rikki Tikki Traveller » Mon Feb 10, 2014 4:52 pm

NO! :D

Even though it doesn't go into an atmosphere, the hull also had to provide SOME kind of radiation protection and particle protection. Even a ship that isn't moving will be exposed to cosmic and solar radiation (not to mention radiation from the Van Alan belts). Wood doesn't protect well against these kinds of radiation.

Space is not actually empty and a ship flying through it will encounter a lot of particle radiation (1 hydrogen atom per cubic centimeter is the "average"). Wood is not such a great radiation shield. Now, if you have force fields to protect your ship, then perhaps you could use wood.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Mon Feb 10, 2014 7:48 pm

Hulls - Exotic Materials

1. Hard to imagine Space Vikings without their solar-sailed longboats.

2. And here all I thought all that was missing was a suitable sealant to make it air tight.

3. I guess it would have to be limited to panelling and floors.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby dragoner » Mon Feb 10, 2014 8:03 pm

Infojunky wrote:
Condottiere wrote:Hulls - Exotic Materials

I wonder, if the starship isn't going to be used for atmospheric re-entry, if you could construct it out of hard wood?
YES!
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Infojunky » Tue Feb 11, 2014 7:37 am

Condottiere wrote:Hulls - Exotic Materials

1. Hard to imagine Space Vikings without their solar-sailed longboats.
We all know Space Vikings use 1500 foot diameter spherical hulls plated in Collapsium.....
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Tue Feb 11, 2014 8:20 pm

I'm not sure if those two were actual Space Vikings:

Trask - too self-absorbed, and gives up after three raids.

Dunnan - too delusional, and seems obsessed in pulling off a coup.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sat Feb 15, 2014 10:00 pm

Artificial Gravity

1. This came up when I was considering replacing a set of deck floors with a wooden floor.

2. Since I doubt you could embed the artificial gravity plates in the wooden floor, I wondered if the artificial gravity would extend 6 metres plus, especially considering the intervening wooden floor.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sun Feb 16, 2014 8:09 am

Hulls - Hamster Wheels

1. Will they significantly impact operating costs of spaceships? IE make it cheaper.

2. Do you need two contra-rotating to counter-act whatever forces the first one creates?
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Mon Feb 17, 2014 8:51 am

External modular containerships

1. Seem the perfect fleet auxiliary; modules can easily be changed to whatever mission they need to support.

2. They can also easily drop them and run like hell if the situation overheats.

3. They also can be easily converted to auxiliary cruiser status. And of course, escort carrier.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Tue Feb 18, 2014 12:44 pm

Hulls - Construction Time

1. Anyone notice how a five hundred ton hull takes sixty four weeks to construct, and a six hundred ton takes ninety six weeks?

2. I'd speculate that any emergency wartime shipbuilding programme would concentrate on building five hundred ton hulls.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:56 pm

Weapons - Sandcasters

1. While it's an old issue, the recent mention of civilian ship weapons (and my ongoing quest to design cut-rate ships), I decided to have a more closer look at sandcasters.

2. With a view to gaming the system, I wondered if an upgrade to:
a. Very High Yield
b. Long Range
might yield interesting results.

3. Switching from sand bags to pebble coshes, you go from 1d3 damage to guaranteed 3 damage, and with three launchers, 9 damage per turret, compared with 3d6 of a railgun and possibly three times six d6 multi-warhead missiles.

4. The problem is, you get more bang for your buck by the other missile weapons; speaking of which, you'd assume that at least it would be far more cheaper per volley.

5. Not at 500 Cr. per bag. My passive-aggressive strategy isn't worth it.

6. In regard to the HG revision, the cost of the sandbags should be revised radically downward.

7. Perhaps in the abstract calculations of the barrage you get a better cost benefit analysis, if you combine two for one damage plus two more points of damage due to very high yield.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sat Feb 22, 2014 11:02 am

Battle-Riders & Tenders

1. Actually, I would have liked to have posted this under Confederation Navy, but these opinions stated on any aspect of naval doctrine or policy are solely those of the author, and in no way reflect the opinions or policies as a whole of the Solomani Confederation Navy, who bear no responsibility or liability for the content of files or documents retrieved through a linkage established through this post. Mention of any product or service does not constitute an endorsement.

2. Unlike what we'll term an actual smallcraft carrier, capital ships don't need the same maintenance and crew rotation that a fighter would need, which basically outsources that to the mothership.

3. While a megaton tender sounds an efficient use of resources, it's actually not, except for commercial carriers. Jumping into a middle of a combat zone puts at risk an incredible amount of tonnage that can neither run nor protect itself, if the immediate neighbourhood turns hostile.

4. What the Confederation Navy should do is construct what are commonly termed jump shuttles, though rather large ones. That means that Admirals' planning for a battle-rider squadron isn't subject to a single point of failure, either coming or going. This prevents time tables being held hostage to any delays by either tender and/or riders who aren't ready to jump.

5. As jump shuttles are smaller, less resources are needed to build and maintain them; replacing or repairing the jump drives of megatoncraft must be a horrifying experience for the bean counters and the engineers.

6. More importantly, when deciding that discretion is the better part of valour, battle-riders can disengage from combat as is convenient, make their way to a waiting jump shuttle and withdraw, rather than needing to wait for their colleagues, or even need to leave them behind to ensure the survival of the tender. And since with jump bubbles they actually don't need to be linked up with the jump shuttle, just be in the general vicinity, an emergency jump can be effected, probably as both are galloping away hell for leather.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sun Feb 23, 2014 12:30 pm

Question - Docking Clamps

1. Do docking clamps need to be attached to a corresponding airlock, or just any part of the hull?

2. If attached to the hull, could an interface be created between the respective two crafts computers, if the hull was so purpose built with a USB port?
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby AndrewW » Sun Feb 23, 2014 3:50 pm

Condottiere wrote:Question - Docking Clamps

1. Do docking clamps need to be attached to a corresponding airlock, or just any part of the hull??
Doesn't actually specify, but since you can add multiple airlocks (without cost depending on the size of the ship and how many) it shouldn't really be a problem to put one in.

[quote="Condottiere""]2. If attached to the hull, could an interface be created between the respective two crafts computers, if the hull was so purpose built with a USB port?[/quote]

Check Signs & Portents #84, page: 15 for System Linkage. Or Supplment 10: Merchants and Cruisers, page: 29. This option would also allow linked computers not not specifically specified.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sun Feb 23, 2014 8:01 pm

The relevance in the question stems to the weapons pods I'm trying to design, where the docking clamp is part of it's tonnage, rather than that of the mothership; requiring a corresponding airlock neutralizes the tonnage off-shoring.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby leopard » Sun Feb 23, 2014 9:03 pm

Didn't the old Hard Times supplement introduce the concept of an open modular frame, essentially you built a skeleton then added modules and evaluated the result as a whole.

IIRC you lost 5% of your hull volume, took no power but that 5% had its normal cost and weight.

Its not cannon but no reason not to use the same mechanic for other components.

Say you have a 100 ton component, weapons pod or whatever. The craft it will attach to must allocate 5 tons with nothing in them - i.e. dead space and weight. That provides the coupling points, clamps, power connections - if the pod is large enough to carry people that 5% will include a transfer tunnel, maybe a large walkway if big enough or a simple tube otherwise. Would suggest if the 5% is large enough you could add an airlock inside it but nothing else.

The pod then does exactly the same, allocates 5 tons to nothing.

Pod and host craft can now dock - assuming one of them is powered, or an external tug of some sort handles the work for them. they will hold at normal craft performance and can operate correctly, but can release quickly if required.

For small pods the 5% isn't that much and becomes a nice simple way of managing what amounts to an external hard point.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Mon Feb 24, 2014 2:14 pm

1. I agree, but docking clamps are what I have to work with, and even the waldos seem limited to two tons.

2. Also, my ulterior motive is to cram more hardpoints in a given tonnage.

3. I knew about the system synchronization, which was why I mentioned specifically the USB port
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Wed Feb 26, 2014 9:29 am

Sandcasters

1. I thought about it some more, and it suddenly occurred to me that a four hundred ton corsair looking down the massed barrels of a superfreighter, might feel a tad intimidated.

2. I rather doubt that planetary authorities are enthused when a ship with an overwhelming number of missile turrets orbits their planet; missile turrets/launchers may actually be limited by law.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Thu Feb 27, 2014 11:37 am

Detachable cockpits

1. It's true, this one stems more from my viewing of anime.

2. Detachable bridges exist, where the extra tonnage seems to span from 50% to 25%, and stops at 6K ships (though I suppose you had dispersed or closed structures you could probably get around that).

3. Pilots could have their cockpits customized as long as a standard interface exists between the fighter and the cockpit, since it's probably all fly by wire or fibre optics or laser by then.

4. The issue arose when I was debating whether fighters still had windscreens, and if entry could be afforded through that.

5. Then I thought one of the biggest costs for light fighters is electronics and computers, and if you could make them interchangeable as per budget allocation.

6. If the fighter is about to be destroyed, the pilot ejects the cockpit module, still has his life support, and CSAR not only bags back the pilot, but also some expensive electronics.

7. You could also heavily armour the cockpit module, which is sometimes referred to as the titanium bathtub.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby AndrewW » Thu Feb 27, 2014 7:56 pm

Condottiere wrote:7. You could also heavily armour the cockpit module, which is sometimes referred to as the titanium bathtub.
Could be placed within a vault.

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