Constitution-class refit vs Galaxy-class (STAR TREK)

For polite and reasoned discussion of Star Wars and/or Star Trek.
Gunmetalgreen
Welcome the new member!
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2018 6:46 am

Re: Constitution-class refit vs Galaxy-class (STAR TREK)

Post by Gunmetalgreen » Mon Mar 19, 2018 7:24 am

I ain't gonna be rude, because I don't really believe in stupid questions. Basically the refitted Enterprise... A, I think? Is a mid-23rd century explorer. The Enterprise-D is a mid-to-late 24th century explorer. The Enterprise-D is vastly superior in virtually, if not literally, all ways. A ship which I think was slightly more advanced than the Enterprise-A was shown, in simulations, to be able to damage the Enterprise-D, but only with a surprise ambush and command codes to hack their sensors and generate phantoms to distract the crew long enough to get a few hits in, plus complete knowledge of the Ent-D's capabilities and the personalities and capabilities of the officer on duty.

In terms of firepower the Ent-D has well over twice as much firepower, probably a lot more than twice to be honest. It has superior firing arcs, stronger and more sophisticated shields, faster sublight speed, similar if not greater agility, its faster-than-light drive is approximately twice as fast, its computer systems are more responsive, its sensors have better range, resolution and reliability. In short the Enterprise-D would steamroll the Enterprise-A with minimal effort. The only possible victory for the Ent-A is a Pyrrhic victory, say by ramming the Ent-D, which would be difficult given the Ent-D's better speed and sensors, or if the Ent-D was suffering extreme disadvantage and the Ent-A were given detailed and intimate knowledge of any exploitable weaknesses.

As an aside, the Enterprise-D has further advantages such as detailed schematics and tactical analyses of the earlier Constitution-class ship, knowing their weaknesses. They also have more capable life-support and material recycling systems that would add an edge if there were a long, drawn-out battle.

User avatar
2046
Starship Captain
Posts: 1901
Joined: Sat Sep 02, 2006 9:14 pm
Contact:

Re: Constitution-class refit vs Galaxy-class (STAR TREK)

Post by 2046 » Mon Mar 19, 2018 9:19 am

Honestly, I'm not sure on the agility front. Geordi noted that the antique Starfleet transport Jenolan was probably capable of running circles around the E-D at impulse, and, while we never saw the refit Constitutions doing the TOS warp combat maneuvers, I can't imagine the E-D being any better at them.

I might agree to straight-line acceleration being comparable or better, and certainly the Stardrive could probably maneuver like a boss, but otherwise I figure the Constitution takes the agility part.

Gunmetalgreen
Welcome the new member!
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2018 6:46 am

Re: Constitution-class refit vs Galaxy-class (STAR TREK)

Post by Gunmetalgreen » Mon Mar 19, 2018 11:32 am

I agree, the Ent and Ent-A -may- be more agile, but given the more advanced propulsion systems, better fusion reactors and better SIF I can't imagine it being qualitatively faster. Hence, "similar if not greater agility". It wouldn't be enough of an advantage to matter in relation to everything else.

As an aside, is it mentioned what actual performance boons the Enterprise and other Constitution-class ships gained from the upgrade? To me it looked not like an upgrade, but a totally different design, though possibly with internal hardware recycled due to expense. The new design seems sleeker, more refined, and with better structural characteristics.

An old-time trekkie told me the story of the upgrade process as it had been told to him, which sounded strange and extremely unlikely to my ears, but if anyone knows anything that'd be helpful. I reiterate, -I didn't come up with this, this is the story as it was related to me- . Basically there was a major advancement in warp cores that necessitated new nacelles to take advantage of the higher output, so the Constitution-class, as the alpha-1 design, was to prototype the new technology. After that upgrade was applied, they found the warp field was so strong the pylons had to be replaced with stronger, more streamlined ones to handle the stress. Once that upgrade was complete, tests revealed that the engineering hull needed a complete readjustment as the hull geometry wasn't able to handle the stress. Once that lengthy was complete, the primary hull followed.

Has anyone else heard the same story?? Sounds bizarre and totally improbable, but my source insisted he was correct.

User avatar
2046
Starship Captain
Posts: 1901
Joined: Sat Sep 02, 2006 9:14 pm
Contact:

Re: Constitution-class refit vs Galaxy-class (STAR TREK)

Post by 2046 » Tue Mar 20, 2018 11:16 am

I'll review TMP carefully and see if there's a shade tree atop the drydock.

359
Jedi Knight
Posts: 452
Joined: Mon Aug 31, 2015 8:28 pm

Re: Constitution-class refit vs Galaxy-class (STAR TREK)

Post by 359 » Wed Mar 21, 2018 6:03 am

We've never seen the Constitution, refit or otherwise, do anything more than maneuver like a sail ship at impulse. Even the Galaxy's basic turn and warp away maneuver is at least twice the acceleration of anything we see.

And with regards to the Jonolan, she's likely over 10 times less massive than a Galaxy class so even with significantly inferior engines she'd run circles around the Enterprise.

Gunmetalgreen wrote:Has anyone else heard the same story?? Sounds bizarre and totally improbable, but my source insisted he was correct.
I've never heard of that either... Perhaps it came from some supplementary material.

User avatar
2046
Starship Captain
Posts: 1901
Joined: Sat Sep 02, 2006 9:14 pm
Contact:

Re: Constitution-class refit vs Galaxy-class (STAR TREK)

Post by 2046 » Wed Mar 21, 2018 11:41 am

1. The Sydney has around twice the volume of the Constitution Class and is likely similar in mass, just with a more compact structure. That puts them both around seven times less massive than the Galaxy.

2. We've seen the Constitutions maneuver. Even in TOS they used the warp pivot shot at impulse (albeit played slower as I recall), and the remaster featured some more moves.

In any case, considering the Ambassador and Nebula turns from "Emissary"(DSN1) I see no reason to assume the Galaxy is less capable, and per the chief engineer of a Galaxy the Sydney's likely more capable, so I don't see a basis for dispute.

User avatar
2046
Starship Captain
Posts: 1901
Joined: Sat Sep 02, 2006 9:14 pm
Contact:

Re: Constitution-class refit vs Galaxy-class (STAR TREK)

Post by 2046 » Wed Mar 21, 2018 11:42 am

Also, it's Janolyn. Get it right!

(Joke… the model and set and everything had spelling variation issues, as noted in the Encyclopedia IIRC)

Darth Spock
Bridge Officer
Posts: 178
Joined: Mon Aug 31, 2015 8:28 pm
Location: A Beta Quadrant far far away

Re: Constitution-class refit vs Galaxy-class (STAR TREK)

Post by Darth Spock » Sun Apr 15, 2018 9:26 pm

While this versus is ridiculously mismatched, I think a major factor here is not just the age but the class difference of the 2 ships. Smaller vessels tend to display better comparative power and resilience relative to their size, but even without the saucer the Galaxy class still displaces almost 10 times the volume as the Connie. Even if they were from the same era that's got to make a difference. Pit the Connie against a more similarly classed vessel such as an Intrepid or Nova, it'd still probably lose, but I think it could do some damage.

I've been trying to piece bits of this together for a while now, and even the impressive technological improvements of Star Trek's Federation are subject to the law of diminishing returns, particularly between the TOS and TNG eras where we see the most obvious examples of slow, evolutionary technological progress and fewer revolutionary changes. The Enterprise era of the 22nd century saw Earth just catching up with their Beta Quadrant neighbors, and in "A Mirror Darkly" a TOS era Constitution was outlandishly more powerful than anything seen in the 2150's. But the comments in TNG 6:4 "Relics" about sensor and communication technology not changing much in 75 years, or the impulse engines not changing much in 200 years suggest a slowdown in the rate of improvement. There is also the mention of the 100+ year old Republic serving as a training vessel in the DS9 episode "Valiant," reinforcing the idea that while such vessels may be outclassed, they still function in essentially the same way and are still relevant. The ubiquity of the Miranda and Excelsior classes, as well as the Klingon BoP well into the 24th century seem to indicate their basic designs were quite practical, leading to continued production and use for many decades. Judging by NCC registries, the Oberth class may have been in production even longer, possibly as far back as the late 22nd century and on into the early 24th. Though it probably did not hold up so well militarily.

There are a handful of combat examples crossing the TOS and TNG eras as well as some general references to performance increases that fit with this as well. In TNG 2:21 "Peak Performance" a decommissioned 80 year old Constellation class vessel is scheduled to engage in battle simulations against the Enterprise D. The test is obviously meant to test the crewmen in a lopsided scenario, and the simulated weapons and shields were likely represented in their latest iterations, but the ship itself still must have been functionally relevant, lest the exercise be as pointless as putting modern seamen aboard the USS Monitor to test them under pressure. In TNG 1:09 "The Battle" Picard's former vessel of the same class was certainly no match for the E-D, but even after 9 years adrift it and it's original compliment of torpedoes was threatening enough to warrant special effort to reduce its field of fire and reinforce their defenses.

Voyager also encountered a 100+ year old Klingon D7 in VOY 7:14 "Prophesy" that managed to bring Voyager's shields down to 50% after a half dozen hits. While the Klingon ship likely received upgrades in that time, its resupply opportunities were no doubt limited in the Delta quadrant, and since they identified the vessel by its Klingon disruptor signature, they evidently didn't acquire any replacement weapon systems, though it's likely they had been replenishing their torpedoes over all that time.

There is also TNG 3:15 "Yesterday's Enterprise" where Tasha Yar says the E-D's shield heat dissipation rates are probably double that of the E-C. That's an impressive improvement, but it's not just the result of 22 years of progress, but of several years of war induced research operating on a much larger next generation vessel. There was mention of sending modern ordinance back with the E-C, but there's no assurance that would have turned the battle, and the earlier comment about the improved shields allowing them to hang longer in a firefight implies that weapon technology had not been keeping the same pace, at least not as far as raw yield was concerned. Granted, heat dissipation rates don't translate directly into precise strength or double "hit points" and this is from a somewhat altered timeline, but it does give us some information.

In TNG 7:19 "Genesis" featured tests on new tactical systems, including an expected 11% yield increase and (intended) targeting improvement for torpedoes. It's hard to say how often such upgrades are implemented, the "mark" "class" and "type" designations aren't terribly informative, but I'd expect such upgrades are several years apart.

There is also the TNG series finally "All Good Things." While it does feature a non-existent future and may not have even "happened" outside of a Q induced vision, it probably should reflect a rough approximation of reality, and it is interesting to compare the relative endurance of the E-D over the course of about 30 years.
Starting from when they first enter the anomaly, and adjusting for the stated time until arriving at the center vs screen time, not knowing exactly how long they were in prior, the rough time to destruction of each vessel was about 127 seconds for the freshly launched E-D, 146 seconds for the season finally version, and 175 seconds for the future refit variant. Counting only the time spent after arriving at the center of the anomaly, the times are roughly 58 seconds, 77 seconds and 106 seconds respectively. The earliest 2364 version was fresh out of initial shakedown, and while fresh, possibly not fully "broken in." We know La Forge made a number of improvements over the series. Using the season finally E-D as a baseline we get an endurance improvement of about 13% - 25% in 2370 over its initial launch and a 20% - 38% improvement for the alternate ~2395 refit. It's worth noting that the anomaly was growing in size and intensity the further it went into the past, which would mean the apparent improvements of the vessel were actually a bit less.

Admittedly, it's mostly just a collection of haphazard observations that don't mesh perfectly, but still, I'm of the school of thought that progress in 24th century 'Trek is a bit slower than it was in the 22nd and even 23rd. In fact, if it weren't for the uncertainty of the Abrams film and Discovery, I'd have taken the sudden increase in the size of ships being built following the TOS era as indication that they ran out of technological improvements and actually needed more "ship" in order to get more performance. Nu 'Trek is confusing that way though.

Post Reply