Ship Design Philosophy

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
Moppy

Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Moppy » Wed Dec 04, 2019 4:47 pm

Last week I had to explain to 7 year olds during a self-driving car ride, why Star Wars had pilots. (Yea, it's gonna get HARD to sell old sci-fi soon. Even Paw Patrol has wearables with digital assistants).

Edit: I am still not convinced that Star Wars doesn't promote robot slavery. Additionally Anakin may be a child soldier, and they bred a whole line of short-lived clones just to fight a war. So YMMV.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Thu Dec 05, 2019 10:54 am

There's an antipathy towards clones and droids in the Galaxy currently, both being responsible for billions, if not trillions, of sophont deaths.

A ship can be equipped with a robot pilot.

Image
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Thu Dec 05, 2019 11:33 am

Starships: Crewing and Auto Motion

1. Basing the cost of automating a vessel on its hull, plus drives and power plant, as shown on the ship automation table, seems incomplete, considering other essential ship systems.

2. As to why I'd say that automation can be isolated, consider the fact that during a refit, a starship could have it's default jump drive replaced by a similar model that requires much more attention.

3. A hull is likely to remain the automation level at the time of it's construction, improvement probably costs more than just scrapping the vessel and transferring it's innards to a new hull.

4. Doesn't mean that it couldn't be de automated.

Image
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby esmdev » Thu Dec 05, 2019 12:10 pm

Plus the more automation and self-driving starships the more vampires running around the galaxy in a few years. ;)
Moppy

Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Moppy » Thu Dec 05, 2019 12:24 pm

I personally would have based automation on the cost of the entire ship.

Whether you can or can't easily replace or automate some component depends on the design. If it's heavily integrated or not designed to be repaired, it might not be possible. If the systems are largely separate, or designed for ease of repair, it's much easier.

Consider that the labor cost of replacing a piston in a (petrol) engine is comparable to the labor cost of replacing the engine. Now imagine the engine is a metaphor for the ship itself. It was not designed for easy access to that component. On the other hand, spark plugs in the engine are easily replaced.

It becomes harder as the design ages and you cram more and more things into the hulll, in places they weren't designed to go.

And then you get to a stage where, no-one, literally, knows exactly what's been done and how the current system works. Any upgrade therefore starts with "doing science" on the current design to experimentally determine its design. I've personally experienced this with old computer code.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Thu Dec 05, 2019 1:33 pm

As stated above, this option looks tailor made for exploitation.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Thu Dec 05, 2019 11:22 pm

Spaceships: Weaponry, Snoopy and Macross Missile Massacre

Image

1. Dogfighting missiles are one fourth the volume, and interceptor ones are half the volume of default missiles

2. Unfortunately, rate of fire remains the same.

3. You could sabot the dogfighting missiles and launch them from the sandcaster; it's a cold launch, the missile is pushed out into the void, where it locate it's target, corrects itself, and accelerates.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sat Dec 07, 2019 3:35 am

Spaceships: Weaponry, Container Launchers, and Macross Missile Massacre

1. Obviously a downsized version of ye missile pack.

2. Presumably, since four missiles or one torpedo are the contents, the cost of the ordnance is pro rataed.

3. Speaking of which, I doubt that one size fits all, even though the volume is the same; you probably have to have specific shaped containers for different sized ordnance.

4. You could stuff in sixteen dogfighter missiles, which actually seems a more attractive option.

5. Unlike the missile pack, the ordnance can be fired individually.

6. The missile pack was listed as weighing in at one tonne, which was probably rounded off from one point one or one point two, since you still have to add in the fire control equipment.

7. That means the container launcher is likely half a tonne.

8. I think that as a fast ad hoc measure, it probably makes sense to install on vessels with free hard points.

9. You can't install them on firmpoints, though you could put two dogfighter or one interceptor missile on an exterior rail, which would save you the cost of the container launcher.

10. If your ship doesn't have a pre existing fire control for missiles, you could after market that, for what seems to me a very cheap price.

11. Speaking of pro rataed, I assume that seventy five thousand bux is for one tonne of forty eight dogfighting missiles.
Moppy

Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Moppy » Sat Dec 07, 2019 4:45 am

Traveller missiles don't vanish if the launching unit does. Therefore I assume fire control is just target selection at launch, and the missile will do the rest. I can't remember any reference to being able to re-target them in flight, which supports this.

Mk 41 uses canisters to fill its launch cells. One SM-2 (or similar large missile) or 4 ESSM (or similar small missile) in each canister.

I'd imagine a future advance for space would be to shoot the missile from a cannon to add initial velocity.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sat Dec 07, 2019 10:37 am

The Manticoreans can do midflight correction, don't recall if it was ever an option in Traveller.

Mass driver, or railgun: smoother acceleration, and no explosion.

Since, let's say like the drop tanks, there are no additional costs and/or internal volume requirements, these aren't launch cells.

Speaking of launch cells ...
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sat Dec 07, 2019 10:45 am

Spaceships: Weaponry, Launch Cell, and Aftermarket Compartmentalization

1. The Harrier has the option to transform their one tonne missile turret into a two cradle torpedo launcher.

2. It's implied that the autoloader has been removed, possibly due to space constraints, and reloading has to be done manually, though no word if that's externally or internally.

3. This would be a launch cell, possibly, individually or together, torpedoes could be prepacked into launch canisters.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:24 am

Spaceships: Weaponry, Marie Kondo, Sparking Joy, and ...

Image

1. Rearming a CAPTOR Mine costs more than simply scrapping it after use, and collecting the recycling fee, especially the large variant.

2. I've reread the entry several times over the past day, in case I misunderstood it.

3. I can't figure out why you have to pay an additional one hundred and fifty kaybux to rearm the mine, besides the actual cost of the torpedo.

4. What you could do, Manticorean style, is to tow the CAPTOR Mines behind your ship on a rope, like pearls on a string, and command detonate them.

5. Or, you could attach them directly on the hull, like missile pods.

6. Maximum range to target would be medium.

7. Optionally, you replace the torpedoes with missiles.
Moppy

Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Moppy » Sun Dec 08, 2019 3:07 am

Condottiere wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:24 am
3. I can't figure out why you have to pay an additional one hundred and fifty kaybux to rearm the mine, besides the actual cost of the torpedo.
Mines are nobody's friend. I think you have to disarm the anti-tampering mechanisms.

edit: There should never be an override code, in case the wrong people get hold of the codes. Therefore you have to disarm the self-destruct mechanism the hard way.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sun Dec 08, 2019 11:43 am

Not at one hundred fifty kaybux a pop; besides, rearming means that it's already shot it's bolt, so what exactly is going to blow up?
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sun Dec 08, 2019 12:04 pm

Spaceships: Hulling, Bridging, and Popping The Weasel

1. Pop out turrets are based on the final tonnage of the hull.

2. That means, when they are de popped, you minus that volume from the hull volume to adjust the performance of the drives.

3. Hull volume has to account for the totality of the pop out turret, not just in it's nesting state.

4. That means that in borderline cases, such as ninety nine tonnes and hundred tonnes, a hardpoint has to be based on the hundred tonnes, which means you have a full turret with three (or four) weapon systems, that when de popped, reduces the hull volume to ninety nine tonnes.

5. If the default hull volume is ninety nine tonnes, a firmpointed turret remains single, and de popped reduces the volume to ninety eight tonnes (in theory, since I don't ascribe to the presumption that a single firm pointed turret is one tonne in volume); three firmpointed weasels would lower that to ninety six tonnes.

6. Default bridge size would have to be based on the final tonnage of the hull, hence at hundred tonnes that would be for a small starship, and apparently, at ninety nine tonnes it would be a large smallcraft with a double cockpit.

7. In case you're wondering, how to stabilize a ninety nine tonne shuttle during that trip down the rabbit hole, glue on a one tonne container on it's hull.
Moppy

Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Moppy » Sun Dec 08, 2019 1:18 pm

Condottiere wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 11:43 am
Not at one hundred fifty kaybux a pop; besides, rearming means that it's already shot it's bolt, so what exactly is going to blow up?
Can the mine recognise friends or be command-controlled?

If so, the circuit for that must be protected by an anti-tamper mechanism, that blows it up if anyone tries to handle the mine.

I don't even know why it's possible to reload a mine. If I designed that thing, it would take itself out if anyone got close and it couldn't launch at them. Space is big, anyone coming with a few meters of your mine knows it is there.

edit: Not having the full rules doesn't help but I'm not picking up any more up util they sort their editing out. Could also be special gear on the torp to allow a non-standard launch, like a disposable turret.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:34 pm

More accurately, they're sniper booby traps parked in space, waiting for the USS Indiana Jones.

I'd say the operator has a large range of options when laying the minefields, including command controlled. It probably depends on the threat assessment when automatic, triggering one wouldn't activate all mines in proximity unless the programme concluded that what was trespassing was a major warship.

A CAPTOR Mine being more of a launcher container, so reloading is an option.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Mon Dec 09, 2019 12:26 pm

Spaceships: Weaponry, Sowing the Seeds of Love, and Daisy, Daisy, Give Me Your Answer Do

1. A specialized mine laying bay spits one out every one or two rounds.

2. You could spread them like caltrops if a more defensive strategy is called for, and Identify Friend or Foe should be uptodate.

3. You could also use them to dissuade pursuit, if you have to make a run for it.

4. Personally, I'd see no difficult in installing racks in a rear facing cargo hatch, and kicking them out the door there.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Mon Dec 09, 2019 11:42 pm

Starships: Thoughts on the Stinger Mantis (Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6gpRQ55gBTE

Image

1. Folding wing.

2. Forward floor slanted windows.

3. Needs a lot of clearance.
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Re: Ship Design Philosophy

Postby Condottiere » Tue Dec 10, 2019 10:53 pm

Spaceships: Hulls and Why Did A Rocket With A Secret Payload *Implode* on the Pad?

Sure, I cover exploding rockets all the time, but much rarer are the cases where rockets did the opposite. Some Rockets designs rely on gas pressure to support their tanks, and when leaks happen the tanks implode and collapse. These are called 'Balloon Tanks' and they enable much thinner, lighter tanks to be used, improving the performance of the rocket at the expense of making them harder to handle on the ground.

The Atlas Rocket used Balloon tanks up until 2005, and the centaur upper stage still uses them.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWExql1xCsM


1. Balloon tanks.

2. Internal pressure sustains exterior structural integrity.

3. Explains paper thin spaceship hulls; all we need is to overpressure the interior.

4. Drop tanks built this way have hundred percent chance of deformation.

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