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space ships and stuff


There is no up in space. Up is only relative to an individual. What i find interesting is that ships always seem to be situated where up is in the same direction. I would have loved to have seen a trek episode where a bird of prey is upsidedown next to a rightsideup enterprise. Bab5 seems to show the randomness of space well. Scenes with battle crabs shifting in all sorts of positions is cool. Also in midnight on the firing line the camera angles and the fight scenes do a good job of showing the lack of directions in space. Though it would be so cool to see a fighter see an upsidedown minbari ship coming out of hyperspace /ubbthreads/images/icons/smile.gif
Didn't they sometimes do that? I recall a formation of White Stars flying so that some were quite "upside down"... and Starfuries seemed to fly pretty much as their pilots liked. In case of Minbari fighters, there is no externally visible bilateral symmetry. Unless you are inside the fighter, you do not know what is "up".

As for large ships, their battles are usually fought from great distances. Usually, two ships were not seen in the same frame. And when something is in the focus, you usually adjust the frame of reference to make its position more natural. As for why formations of ships tended to be aligned with each other... perhaps for most ships, there is one clearly limited direction in which you can output most firepower.
I would imagine that ships would orientate themselves to match up with each other. That is, if one ship approaches the other, it would rotate to be in the same position as the other. It would just make everything easier.
haha, the original Gathering tried to do something - having B5 upside down.......it didn't work to well though lol

yes, gotta love the way a starfury makes you feel like your in space
I have a question. In deep space, how is it possible to see things without a local light source?
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr>I have a question. In deep space, how is it possible to see things without a local light source?<hr></blockquote>
Use some kind of light (or electromagnetic) amplification. Otherwise you're going to have to create a local light (or electromagnetic source) such as using radar.
I mean, what's the sci-fi explanation when they show a ship in deep space when there isn't a local light source? Or is it a sound in space thing?
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr>I mean, what's the sci-fi explanation when they show a ship in deep space when there isn't a local light source?<hr></blockquote>

You could say "this is how it would look in the light-amplifying sensors of another ship". Because "this is how it would look on radar" is not such a good idea. Television is a visual art.
I mean if the ship is alone. Like on deep patrol. Although I realize that we wouldn't be seeing it. It's like a "If a tree fell in the forest and no one heard it. Did it make a sound?"
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr>If a tree fell in the forest and no one heard it. Did it make a sound?<hr></blockquote>It seems that you answered your own question.
If there was nobody nearby, we can only imagine it.
because it would be frightfully boring if we just got to see the silloettes of ships against a thin starfield with a canvas of silence /ubbthreads/images/icons/tongue.gif
I suspect that the real answer is that in Babylon 5 we never see a spaceship in deap space. The spaceships are always in orbit near a sun/star.

When Babylon 5 goes behind Epsilon 3 they switch the outside lights on.

Andrew Swallow
they've shown deep space shots before... but i can tell you for an absolute fact that the lighting even in planetary systems is incorrect. in real life, there would only be one primary light source and besides that there would be little to no lighting... in other words, all the light would only come from one direction. all shadows would be completely black. actually, near the beginning of the series the lighting of b5 was probably more realistic, but the simple fact of the matter is this just doesnt look as good. most space scenes have at least 3 relatively hot lightsources coming in from different directions

another 'flaw' in the effects of b5 was all the nebulas.. pretty much every local has one. actual space tends to be much less interesting, but the reason that this was done in the show was to provide more contrast between the ships and the background... it visually looks better to have a darkly lit ship against a non-black background.

mind you, im not knocking the effects of b5, im simply saying it was more 'artistic' then 'realistic' /ubbthreads/images/icons/smile.gif
You reckon? I think it's all up to debate really seeing as we haven't travelled further than the moon and even then it's in a craft which isn't really all that large.
I agree with the point about lighting from different sources. We just don't know enough about lighting in deep space on a ship over a kilometer in length.
I think it's a fair compromise between realism and artistry.
Well, things are still illuminated by whatever stars you have nearby, and also illuminated by your ship, and illuminated by itself. In this I assume that your ship and the other ship puts out some form of light (which would ofcourse make sense, they started this with aircraft to prevent collisions, so it would naturally progress onto starships). So all in all, while it would make sense for you to see the ships, it wouldn't make sense for you to see their beam weapons, or hear them, but I'll take this one at a time.
First of all, vacuum is a fairly non refractive medium. I say fairly, because you can't really find TOTAL vacuum, there is always some space dust and other particles hanging around places. Which is only natural if you consider how this universe was formed (by this I am assuming that you beleive in the big bang theory)
But again, this would definitely not be enough for the beam to be refracted enough to become coloured.
And, the beam will not be seen, because it will have no colour.

Second of all, beams, torpedoes, explosions, and anything for that matter cannot be heard in space.
This is for the simple reason that there is no air in space. And sound works on the principles of compressing air molecules. If there are no air molecules to compress, then there is no sound.
actually we do know... light is light is light. distance on the solar level are very huge so when we receive light from the sun it literally comes in as a solid wall of light... each beam of light, the vector of each photon, has the same angle. thus, it rather easy to figure out what would happen as the situation isnt really that complicated from a physics point of view
Yes, but ofcourse on such a scale you have to also factor in the speed of light. If you're dealing with great distances, the light reaching you will have a time delay since it had to travel that space between the two ships.
While this delay also occurs on earth, the distances here are far too insignificant for it to have a big effect.
About beam weapons...

Lets take a simple example, something we know. Lasers. A laser outputs coherent photons, in sync with each other and traveling on a relatively parallel course. Therefore you should not see a laser beam in space. It becomes visible only when it contacts and excites stray matter, located very thinly in space.

But lasers are hardly the only weapons. Particle beams may degrade on their way to target, emitting photons due to internal reactions. Antimatter flying towards its target will emit light as it touches and annihilates particles of matter. These effects would be subtle, but they would exist. For artistic purposes, they are shown in an exaggerated manner.
All too true. And that is probably why most sci-fi prefers not to use lasers in it's weapons arsenal (well, except SW, which is totally laser based /ubbthreads/images/icons/laugh.gif)
The more technobabble beams they come up with, the more new properties they can use, and the better the excuse for why they are visible.

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