Mr. Oragahn wrote:The whole Federation? If we're talking about a suicidal and silly immediate onslaught, I don'k think so, too many worlds for ships which are outclassed in defenses and armament. Against Earth alone, yes. The whole Cylon fleet is large enough for that and its method of FTL transport is vastly different than what the UFP uses and recognizes.
But as we know, Cylons assess their enemy (humans and more humanoids, disgusting!) and come up with a plan. Their Basestars are huge and have lots of room to spare. Cylons would obviously know what their enemies are capable of. Shields, weapons, sensors, logistics aren't exactly that secret except logically for the latest toys. Then again there are people ready to sell the tech. Cylons don't need their Basestars to be equal, just better by bridging the gap, packing above all more defenses so as to be able to do the damage and survive longer.
Active UFP defenses aren't totally impenetrable either. A flotilla of Jemmie bugships did manage slipping deep enough through the defenses –despite using warp travel and probably being easy to spot on the rim of the solar system, at least– so as to create some noticeable damage in San Francisco. Even if that's only debris of ships that fell from the sky, the simple fact that debris managed to reach the ground at all tells us a lot the imperfection of defenses.
You never specified the exact parameters of the confrontation to the best of my knowledge. Only that the "high profile worlds" of the Federation were vulnerable to Basestars jumping into position for an Alpha strike.
Yes. Isn't it what I essentially summarized?
I also remember the discussion and pointing out that the further we'd go in the past of the UFP, the greater the chances for the Cylons to actually win in a real war. For sure, by TNG I think I couldn't see anything better than an alpha Strike and then again, the Cylon fleet is not infinite.
Regarding the damage to San Francisco, which I believe was part of the Breen's Doolittle raid against Earth, the fact the city wasn't a smoking crater when we know the Breen should be able to pump out terajoules if not petajoules per ship would strongly imply some kind of protective field be it theater or planetary based.
No need to go for that. The damage is so small that it's quicker to say debris fell towards San Francisco and maybe some troops were beamed down in a hurry and did some damage with whatever they packed and that's about it.
The level of damage is in line with the amount of firepower troops could carry.
Mr. Oragahn wrote:What did they need to get that update? And more importantly, the species that has access to this planet-wide shield, can we make a generality out of them?
Concerning the first part, the relevant portions from here
Year of Hell wrote:JANEWAY: Commander, put the ship on twenty four hour tactical alert. Tuvok, analyse whatever data we've got on those chronoton torpedoes. See if you can modify our shielding. When those Krenim attack again, I want to be ready.
TUVOK: Fascinating. When will the deflectors be ready?
SEVEN: They're ready now, but the modifications are untested.
PARIS: The Krenim are within visual range.
JANEWAY: On screen.
TUVOK: Seven's modified temporal shields should be online in a moment.
KIM: It's a warship.
JANEWAY: You know the routine.
PARIS: Evasive manoeuvres.
SEVEN: Temporal shielding is online.
KIM: They're firing.
CHAKOTAY: Full port thrusters.
(One torpedo misses, the other hits.)
TUVOK: Temporal shields are holding. No damage.
TUVOK: Captain, the Krenim warship is in pursuit, but their weapons are not powered.
JANEWAY: They don't know what to do with us now that we're shielded against their torpedoes.
KIM: Captain, there's some kind of spatial distortion heading toward us. Sensor readings are erratic. I can't identify the phenomenon.
CHAKOTAY: What's the source?
KIM: Unknown. But it originated approximately twenty light years from our position. It looks like a shockwave in the fabric of space-time.
JANEWAY: Tom, get us out of here.
PARIS: We'll never outrun it, Captain.
JANEWAY: Maybe our new shields will help. All hands, brace for impact.
TUVOK: You were correct, Captain. The temporal shielding has protected us. The wave front has passed.
Thank you for the details regarding VOY 4.07. Unfortunately, they relate to a piece of information which I previously thought proved the existence of a planetary shield. It is not the case anymore.
As for the aliens Chakotay knows little more about them than that they exist and could only surmize from his general understanding of 24th century technology.
Mr. Oragahn wrote:... does not necessarilly mean that the planet does get a shield.
We have two elements : 1. ships get the temporal shielding. 2. planets could now be protected against temporal weapons.
Considering that the vast majority of cases has shown that planets are either defended by fleets or stationary small battle stations and armed satellites, that line above is certainly not conclusive in that the planets would have a temporal shielding.
Besides the episode there's also the memory alpha page
Suffice it to say the weapon erases people and things from history. Which in turn further affects history by their absence, such as the Krenim going from disposed rabble rousers to supreme rulers of the region from one alteration, which every world would be vulnerable too if they didn't have temporal shielding.
For Chakotay to think the aliens can protect their worlds can be taken as an implicit example of planetary shielding.
And ST4 shows that you can throw an entire crew into the past, pick two whales, even provide the formula for transparent steel and this changes absolutely nothing noticeable to the future. The movie even makes a point showing things happening the exact same way.
So there's no need for an implied planet-wide shield.
Mr. Oragahn wrote:This would require going through the thread, wherein I explain why the setup is definitely weird and illogical, notably because it works in a way that no sane people in space would want to us, which allowed me to suggest that then planet wide shield was not a natural and standard use of the shielding technology.
Simply put, a shield that kills all people it's meant to protect just because someone pokes a hole in it opposite to the generator is quite a stupid design, to say the least.
That's like if Solo & co blew up the DSII simply by planting explosives in the casting station down on Endor.
Since the shield generator and the colony were one and the same on a hostile, toxic planet it isn't too surprising overpowering one could have negative results for the other. This is a universe with exploding console syndrome after all.
More saliently nothing in the episode suggests the shield is some special, unique or rare piece of technology, nor explain why an asylum with a handful of inmates would warrant such a device.
And space is a dangerous place, cold and full of radiations. Besides, it sucks people out when a breach is made in the hull of your ship. On the other hand, the compound was under a solid dome.
So yes, as you typed, overpowering
is precisely the point. It is not normal, nor safe. If you read the thread, you'd see more points I make that prove the stupidity of its working.
Think of it. We don't see ships blowing up because a hole is made in their shields. Here, a shield that would protect an entire planet is ought to fend off more than one ship. Yet one ship has the potential to not only put a hole in the shield but cause more damage than a fleet of warships. It does not follow, if simply for the fact that such a shield, if it were stable and normal, should not only not threaten its protected users if it were to falter, but would also have the objective to protect a whole planet, which because of the sheer size of the target, would make it far more likely to face more than one single ship.
Otherwise you're going to admit that planetary shields in Trek can be taken by ships with a firepower in the KT, low MT, and will surely kill those it means to protect, even if the whole is made on the other side of the planet, opposite to where the generator is located.
I don't think you want that.
Mr. Oragahn wrote:Isn't that VOY? This is a show about a crew flying through a totally uncharted space full of seemingly non-united worlds.
One can come with some super tech and another lack that super tech of the week but have something of their own, unique and different.
Just to be clear, my point is not to deny the references. I'm saying there's no rule to be made out of very isolated outliers.
I'm sorry, Year of Hell is the temporal example we are discussing above.
How are we defining outliers?
In this case, that would be an alien civilization that, thus far, has no connection to the usual factions. So even if the show records a case of a planet-wide shield, it is an exception as it does not apply to the factions which are generally considered in Star Trek (UFP, Klingons, Dominion, etc.).
Mr. Oragahn wrote:As I said, MA is akin to a station. Shielding a station is just a matter of having plenty of power plants, shield generators and relays. It's not the same thing as one moon or planet wide shield being cast from one single point.
Considering the mess the shield of Elba was when covering an entire planet, I'm quite sure the Federation would rather opt for a redundancy of local shields to protect the civilians.
How do you know the MA wouldn't have a single shield generator? Or a starbase for that matter?
It could, but artificial structures can house plenty of relays, secondary generators and power plants and sort of buse-buffers to cope with the excess of energy in a given section. That is the advantage of building an entire structure from the ground up.
It is not required, but would surely help a lot in the protection. Still, what do we have in terms of evidence of a unique, centralized and very powerful shield generator and caster?
For example, in ROTJ, it's simple. We see the antenna and there's the entire power plant underneath, and by the size of the fireball we can guesstimate the size of the power plant.
Do we have any diagram or anything showing the size of a shield generator meant to repel capship firepower and how it works, spreads, so on and so forth?
Elba shows the Federation has the capability and no moral qualms with employing it to protect civilians.
At that very moment in the show, it wasn't used by civilians nor the UFP but by a mad man. We simply don't know if the UFP would use it that way.
And if the UFP isn't too dumb, I'd certainly think they would not
use it that way.
Not to mention there is no evidence breaching the Elba shield would actually threaten a planetary population as opposed to a, relatively, small asylum worth of people concentrated around the shield emitter.
Considering the power it's ought to use regarding the shield strength per zone and the overall total resistance against nuclear-level firepower... and that ships alone carry gigatons worth of antimatter... something tells me that if a planetary shield generator were to blow up... it would be pretty nasty.
I mean, simply put, either you have a super wide shield that still kills people locally and can only repel the firepower of one single ship like the Connie using phasers only (and perhaps a spread of torps for the icing) and... that's not great. I don't know how much AM the Connie carried but I'd say you'd need at the very least that
amount of AM to cover the power expenditure. I think you'd reach in the hundreds of megatons and considering how fast the bombardment go, you may not have anytime to move people around to safe zones.
Or you go for a real
wartime planetary shield that can provide protection against a flotilla of warships (flotilla already existed back in ENT so the UFP would know what kind of sizes flotillas could come in). A shield also capable of tanking shots for an extended amount of time... so you see it require heaps of antimatter. How many? Gigatons, easily (TOS-era ships are less powerful than TNG-era ones, themselves carrying several gigatons worth of AM based on several self destruction sequences, but we compensate with numbers, as always). Now, a multi-gigaton explosion wouldn't kill an entire planet's population, but it would surely mess things up a lot because your design includes the fact that poking a hole in it blows the entire generator facility up, something we've never seen with ships (ships lose their shields and... that's all, they're only exposed).
Or your super mighty planetary shield has no such weakness, but then we'd be discussing about something we're yet to see.
It's just that the Elba case is totally fishy. Find me a Scarif-like or Druidia-like case and I think we'll be in agreement.
Mr. Oragahn wrote:And is noted but doesn't tell us much about the hardware itself. How big it was, what it ran on, how long it took to bring it here, with what type of ship, how powerful, etc.
True. But it does tell us 2 mile plus diameter shields are not cost prohibitive for the 23rd century to produce and are strong enough to be of some use in a combat situation.
That's true, they have such devices in stock and are logistically affordable. They don't seem to require very special circumstances to be deployed. But then again it's only a protection of two miles in diameter.
I'm not going to make a calculation to show how many of them would be needed to cover something like Cuba.
Mr. Oragahn wrote:Many examples taken from VOY do not apply to the Federation. In fact, probably most of them if not all of them.
Thus far, all evidence shows that a planet wide coverage could only be achieved with a copious amount of shield generators forming a lattice of some kind, a patchwork.
It would really depend on the example in question. It would have to established the example is abnormal and specifically atypical to the Federation tech and capabilities.
Best examples for the Federation show that only completely artificial structures –therefore capable of hiding tons of conduits, relays and what-have-you– are showing evidence of large scale shielding... and it's not planet-wide yet, always limited to stations, with the shields themselves likely being bubbles barely extending beyond the structures, or hull hugging.
"Year of Hell" specifically is based upon the technical expertise of a starfleet officer who could only speak in the general about a race of aliens he has never met and only recently learned entered an alliance with Janeway. Chakotay being a captive on the Krenim time weapon at the time. Which implicitly implies shield technology is doable by a general 24th century level of technology.
And YoH 1 & 2 don't specifically mention planetary shields and don't even need to imply any, as demonstrated several paragraphs above.
As for your idea of a patchwork shield, what evidence supports that? Every example I can think of, regardless of the shield's ultimate size, is singularly generated be it a building, a colony or a planet.
Simply put, for the two first cases, building or colony, unless there is a proof that these systems can be pushed at a planet wide scale under sane and safe conditions, there's no other way round than relying on an assembly of several shields.
As for the third, there is only one and only case of a shield encompassing a whole planet, that of Elba, and it is not a sound design at all and does not behave like any other shield regarding what happens if it gets pierced in just one single point.
So overall it's quite a strong case in favour of patchworked shields if anyone is willing to claim the existence of planet-wide shields.