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Starships with Counter Grav

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Starships with Counter Grav
Post by CaptainPerseus   » Tue Aug 20, 2019 9:44 pm

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Does anyone know whether RFC has mentioned whether there is a size limit to vehicles that can have counter grav? The books have a variety of craft from aircars to pinnances and shuttles that have counter grav and I'm curious whether something like a starship could be equipped it. I have a picture in my head of a Saganami-C or maybe a Nike equipped with counter grav passing above the towers of Landing before Elizabeth in a Fleet Review.
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Re: Starships with Counter Grav
Post by tlb   » Wed Aug 21, 2019 8:22 am

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Because of the destructive power of the wedge, I expect that anything close to the size of even the smallest wedge equipped ship would be illegal in the planet's atmosphere to prevent accidents. Other than that I expect that it is an easy problem in engineering.
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Re: Starships with Counter Grav
Post by Theemile   » Wed Aug 21, 2019 9:00 am

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tlb wrote:Because of the destructive power of the wedge, I expect that anything close to the size of even the smallest wedge equipped ship would be illegal in the planet's atmosphere to prevent accidents. Other than that I expect that it is an easy problem in engineering.


I believe I saw something about 10,000 tom cargo shuttles once - I don't know if those were just exo-atmosopheric or trans-atmosopheric. I know Cauldron of Ghosts was ret-conned because the original version had Anton and Cathy taking off from the planet in her hyper yacht (and later Anton landing on Mesa with another hyper-Yacht)- which should have massed around the same as the Titanic.
******
RFC said "refitting a Beowulfan SD to Manticoran standards would be just as difficult as refitting a standard SLN SD to those standards. In other words, it would be cheaper and faster to build new ships."
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Re: Starships with Counter Grav
Post by Jonathan_S   » Wed Aug 21, 2019 9:46 am

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tlb wrote:Because of the destructive power of the wedge, I expect that anything close to the size of even the smallest wedge equipped ship would be illegal in the planet's atmosphere to prevent accidents. Other than that I expect that it is an easy problem in engineering.

Guess it depends on what you defined as "smallest ship" since pinnaces and many shuttles have wedges yet those have planetary landing as a major design requirement.
(Now they don't operate their wedges in atmosphere, but AFAWK there's nothing physically preventing them from doing so) OTOH those also mount air-breathing turbine engines to provide relatively environmentally benign power in atmo)

Ships do have fusion thrusters, and if you could have enough countergrav to reduce the apparent weight to near zero you could presumably use really low power settings on those to get in and out of the atmosphere. Mind you you're still spraying sun hot radioactive plasma around -- just nowhere near as much as you would be if countergrav doesn't scale up that large. So it's still a minor environmental disaster parading your starship through the atmosphere; just not as large of one as running a 100+ km wide wedge through atmo.


Still it's a bad idea even if countergrav can scale up that much. (And even if it can why would you waste the volume, mass, and money on installing that much countergrav into a starship? That just detracts from what it actually needs to do in order to, what, hold a photo-op flyby once in a while?)
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