Does space dock even make sense?

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Themightytom
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Does space dock even make sense?

Post by Themightytom » 2019-05-17 10:33pm

They had it in Star Trek 3, and then forever after. A seven Mile or so tall space station where I guess, ships went to park. They reused the model and it became a template that continued into TNG, but... I mean... Why?

The Enterprise was pretty badly damaged so I suppose under certain circumstances you would want a contained environment for repairs, but it doesn't seem to be pressurized, I would imagine heavily damaged star ships would be a menace, leaking plasma, or at risk of an antimatter explosion or who knows what radiation.

They seemed to be storing the Excelsior there, again, what is the cleaning even like if they store spaceships meant for space, indoors. The frameworks we saw in the motion picture and at the beginning of Star Trek II seem like they work for construction work just fine and are much easier to construct or sustain. They used one after Enterprise D survived the Borg, or again when Enterprise E played bumper cars with Shinzon.

So why a space dock. If you need a giant space station for commerce, or administration, or even defense, does it make sense to do all this at once?

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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by FaxModem1 » 2019-05-17 11:25pm

Themightytom wrote:
2019-05-17 10:33pm
They had it in Star Trek 3, and then forever after. A seven Mile or so tall space station where I guess, ships went to park. They reused the model and it became a template that continued into TNG, but... I mean... Why?

The Enterprise was pretty badly damaged so I suppose under certain circumstances you would want a contained environment for repairs, but it doesn't seem to be pressurized, I would imagine heavily damaged star ships would be a menace, leaking plasma, or at risk of an antimatter explosion or who knows what radiation.

They seemed to be storing the Excelsior there, again, what is the cleaning even like if they store spaceships meant for space, indoors. The frameworks we saw in the motion picture and at the beginning of Star Trek II seem like they work for construction work just fine and are much easier to construct or sustain. They used one after Enterprise D survived the Borg, or again when Enterprise E played bumper cars with Shinzon.

So why a space dock. If you need a giant space station for commerce, or administration, or even defense, does it make sense to do all this at once?
I think it's a way to include all the infrastructure you need for a starbase in one place. Crew quarters, bars, restaurants, office, brigs, repair facilities, etc. while also being a base for orbital defenses against invaders, as well as nearby storage for parts, and maybe even ships in storage so they aren't continually exposed to external radiation, micrometeorite impacts, giant whale probes, etc.

Considering we see the same model of space station all over the Federation, I wouldn't be surprised if they just make the things into kits, transport the kits to a planet, assemble them, and then have solid defense against any invaders.
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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by Lord Revan » 2019-05-18 06:05am

Yeah it seems like a Place where you can have on the infrastucture in a convinient place, it wouldn't suprice me at all if ESD functioned as custom station for the civilian trafic to Earth as well.
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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by Knife » 2019-05-19 11:53am

It concentrates personnel, resources, and equipment. It's logistics. At anytime, you can direct the resources and specially trained people to any or all ships at the dock. In a single space you have the logistics to outfit, change, refit, fix, staff, or overhaul multiple ships at once.

In the other 'ship yards' we see in trek, they are just scaffolding. Everything needs to be brought to that location, including workers. In a space dock (the mushroom looking thing I believe we're talking about) it's all there already. They have the volume for workers and equipment to be present at all times.
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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by bilateralrope » 2019-05-19 12:21pm

I would imagine heavily damaged star ships would be a menace, leaking plasma, or at risk of an antimatter explosion or who knows what radiation.
Unlike starships, a space dock doesn't need to keep all its forcefield generating equipment inside the shield volume. So they should be able to contain a larger explosion than a starships shields can withstand. Plus, they can always transport most of the antimatter out of the ship and only put more back in as needed, instead of the starship having a full tank.

So that problem looks manageable.

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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by Themightytom » 2019-05-20 01:11pm

There was a caretaker station next to the scaffolding in TMP, and I got the sense that people transport up from Earth to work a shift and then go back. Maybe Space Dock is more about repairs then long term refit, and if the Excelsior was built but still being tweaked, maybe that's why it was in there?

In more remote places I can see a lot of value, more even, if space dock were mobile or at the very least towable You move one out onto the frontier, use it to build infrastructure, then move it further out again, but they seem too big for that.

The new DS9 design seems like a blend where ships are still repaired outside but it does all that other stuff.

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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by bilateralrope » 2019-05-20 01:18pm

Where does this new DS9 design come from ?

Because the hull color says Federation station to me. Not Cardassian.
Plus the 'pylons' are both connected to a central spire and look to be at 90 degrees from each other. Meaning 4 of them, not the 3 DS9 on TV.

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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by Elheru Aran » 2019-05-20 02:07pm

bilateralrope wrote:
2019-05-20 01:18pm
Where does this new DS9 design come from ?

Because the hull color says Federation station to me. Not Cardassian.
Plus the 'pylons' are both connected to a central spire and look to be at 90 degrees from each other. Meaning 4 of them, not the 3 DS9 on TV.
Suspect it's from the cover of a Trek novel post-DS9 but still carrying the label. Either the Cardassian station is heavily remodeled or retired.
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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by tezunegari » 2019-05-20 02:25pm

Elheru Aran wrote:
2019-05-20 02:07pm
bilateralrope wrote:
2019-05-20 01:18pm
Where does this new DS9 design come from ?

Because the hull color says Federation station to me. Not Cardassian.
Plus the 'pylons' are both connected to a central spire and look to be at 90 degrees from each other. Meaning 4 of them, not the 3 DS9 on TV.
Suspect it's from the cover of a Trek novel post-DS9 but still carrying the label. Either the Cardassian station is heavily remodeled or retired.
The original cardassian Terok Nor / DS9 was destroyed by the Typhon Pact in one of the Typhon Pact novels - I think it was "Raise of Dawn".
That looks like the replacement station they build (Personally I really abhor that new design.)
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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by Tribble » 2019-05-22 09:53pm

Another reason why some Starbases like Spacedock are enclosed could be to defend the starships undergoing repairs / refitting inside as they could be vulnerable to an enemy attack. Most starbases would likely have at least some weapons for defence and by being enclosed they may provide enough time for the ships to be made ready and/or reinforcements to arrive. Hell DS9 was capable of holding off an entire fleet on its own, although that was a deliberate retrofit due to the threat of a Dominion attack. That being said, DS9 was an old decommissioned mining station and it stands to reason that a top of the line Starbase ought to be even more heavily armed and armoured, even if we never really saw them in action.
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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by Jub » 2019-05-23 08:49am

Like people above have said a large spacedock type station could make sense for a lot of reasons.

1) They could function as repair/refit yards and, if desired, could probably function as a low yield frontier shipyard in a pinch.

2) Being a protected dock for smaller classes of vessel either in times of war or against hazards like periodic solar flares, especially active debris fields, etc.

3) Facilitating supply transfer via dock may still be faster than using transporters to do the job. A specialized cargo ship might simply be able to offload goods more quickly and easily via conventional means and an enclosed dock may help with that.

4) Large stations allow a sizeable population to live around a planet that may be strategically valuable but less than desirable to live on. A 7 km station could easily hold hundreds of thousands if not millions of people if required.

5) Large stations can house larger reactors and thus power stronger weapons and shields which is a good thing when combined with all the other roles they serve.

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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by Themightytom » 2019-05-27 01:43am

So for contrast here is more about the new DS9 in the original timeline,
Image

https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/Yorktown

Why even build this thing if you could just make a planet to live on and a shipyard to out ships in. It seemed inevitable some dude would try to fly his ship around in it, and endanger everyone's lives, Kirk just got there first.

Admittedly this is the alternate universe where everyone acted different, the federation seemed younger and more rapidly expanding, and even with all that Starbase Yorktown would have been a hundred years before DS9 serving bigger ships.

If protecting ships and enclosing everything inside is the goal, couldn't they actually make them just globes, like Yorktown, and then larger? I feel like building in three dimensions instead of pretending gravity is still up and down when it isn't kind of wastes a lot of space on Space dock. I mean I guess it's good that ships know not to fly in upside down?

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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by Themightytom » 2019-05-27 01:43am

So for contrast here is more about the new DS9 in the original timeline,
Image

https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/Yorktown

Why even build this thing if you could just make a planet to live on and a shipyard to out ships in. It seemed inevitable some dude would try to fly his ship around in it, and endanger everyone's lives, Kirk just got there first.

Admittedly this is the alternate universe where everyone acted different, the federation seemed younger and more rapidly expanding, and even with all that Starbase Yorktown would have been a hundred years before DS9 serving bigger ships.

If protecting ships and enclosing everything inside is the goal, couldn't they actually make them just globes, like Yorktown, and then larger? I feel like building in three dimensions instead of pretending gravity is still up and down when it isn't kind of wastes a lot of space on Space dock. I mean I guess it's good that ships know not to fly in upside down?

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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by Themightytom » 2019-05-27 01:58am

Sorry about duplicate posts but for some reason trying to include images is ruining everything.

So for contrast here is more about the new DS9 in the original timeline,
Image
https://memory-beta.fandom.com/wiki/Dee ... 9_%28II%29

Frontier class, Population 13,000, full drydock and conatruction facilities, an entire deck memorial for all the people who died on the old DS9, a... Park?? And is the head quarters of Starfleet JAG, maybe too much went down during DS9 for Starfleet taste.
https://vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/sta ... 0130143622



incidentally they towed a "portable" construction station out to build it, Construction Station 173, obviously a legend in it's own right.

Image

https://memory-beta.fandom.com/wiki/Con ... tation_173

I guess they built it in the Bajor system, then when DS9II was built they moved it to Earth?
This seems like kind of a lot of effort, they could have just started with modules and added on from there, Space Dock could almost look like they started with the bottom and then added increasingly bigger sections.


Image


Then there is this ridiculousness,(At least in my opinion, and Dr McCoy's)
Image

https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/Yorktown

Why even build this thing if you could just make a planet to live on and a shipyard to out ships in. It seemed inevitable some dude would try to fly his ship around in it, and endanger everyone's lives, Kirk just got there first.

Admittedly this is the alternate universe where everyone acted different, the federation seemed younger and more rapidly expanding, and even with all that Starbase Yorktown would have been a hundred years before DS9 serving bigger ships.

If protecting ships and enclosing everything inside is the goal, couldn't they actually make them just globes, like Yorktown, and then larger? I feel like building in three dimensions instead of pretending gravity is still up and down when it isn't kind of wastes a lot of space on Space dock. I mean I guess it's good that ships know not to fly in upside down?

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"ACORN= Cobra obviously." AMT
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Re: Does space dock even make sense?

Post by bilateralrope » 2019-05-27 02:09am

It sounds like they really beefed up the station. Which makes sense when it's sitting right beside the only choke point in Federation space.
I feel like building in three dimensions instead of pretending gravity is still up and down when it isn't kind of wastes a lot of space on Space dock.
That depends on the nature of artificial gravity systems. If having them all pointing in the same direction makes things easier*, then that defines an up and down for the station. The same reason probably applies to docked ships. Which means that anybody who is planning to dock is going to orientate themselves with the stations up and down. Anyone departing the station has no reason to reorientate their ship during their departure.

*Maybe they use significantly less power if they aren't having to act against each other. Maybe it's just to avoid the hazards of moving between areas of different gravity orientation.

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