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Old 08-21-2020, 02:49 PM
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Nate the Great Nate the Great is online now
Knate airrant
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Posts: 4,051

PNQ: How come the Trek screenwriters keep using impulse when thrusters would be more applicable?

In Wrath of Khan Kirk orders impulse in Spacedock and Saavik specifically mentions only thrusters in Spacedock. Kirk does it again in Search for Spock. I decided to Do The Math on how long it would take to cross Spacedock at one quarter impulse.

The diameter of Spacedock is 4,600 meters and the Enterprise is 305 meters. Quarter impulse is one sixteenth the speed of light or 18.7 million meters/s. It would take 0.00025 seconds to cross Spacedock. If we set the crossing time at a minute to follow the movies, Spacedock would have to be 18,000 km across! So the rule "only thrusters in spacedock" isn't just red tape created by people in cubicles, it's just common sense! Even if the Enterprise was aimed directly at open space doors, I wouldn't attempt impulse in there at all! Somehow I doubt a collision at those speeds wouldn't be scraped paint, it would overwhelm the structural integrity fields and rip ship and Spacedock to confetti!
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