Space dock

A space dock is a hypothesised type of space station that is able to repair or build spacecraft similar to maritime shipyards on Earth. They remove the need for new spacecraft to perform a space launch to reach space and existing spacecraft to make an atmospheric entry and landing for repair work. They currently only exist in fiction, however concept work has been undertaken on real space dock facilities that could be built with current technology.

Real world

American Space Dock Concept A
Concept design for a United States space dock - a large spaceship is being constructed by robotic arms underneath the main truss, and a spaceplane is entering an enclosed hangar.

Space docks, as part of a wider space logistics infrastructure, are considered a relevant part of a true space-faring society. Scientists of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics have proposed that future, near-term LEO space facilities should include "a large space dock making possible the on-orbit assembly and maintenance of large space facilities, space platforms, and spacecraft" (see image for design concept). A space dock / hangar could also allow enclosed (and possibly pressurized) maintenance of smaller spacecraft and space planes, though the construction of non-atmospheric spacecraft and other space facilities is envisaged as its main use.[1] The structural strength of such a more advanced hangar would primarily be based on the internal atmospheric pressure that would have to be sustained for shirt-sleeve operations, thus enabling routine servicing and assembly in space.[2]

The use for orbital maintenance could be especially critical for damaged atmospheric spacecraft, which are at great risk during reentry into the atmosphere, as was shown during the Columbia disaster. In the wake of the disaster, NASA improvised repairs to shuttles while in flight,[3] a procedure which would have been much easier with a dedicated orbital facility. The use of a major space dock as a construction facility would also be required for the construction of an interstellar colonization starship built with current or near-term technology.[4]

Future Ares V missions[5] for example could serve to cost-effectively transport construction materials for future spacecraft and space exploration missions,[6] delivering raw materials to a Moon-based space dock positioned as a counterweight[7] to a Moon-based space elevator.[8]

Science fiction

Space docks in science fiction play an important role in the construction and maintenance of space vessels. They add a depth of realism to the fictional worlds they appear in and continue the nautical parallels that most space-based science fiction uses. Space docks serve the same purpose as their non-fictional terrestrial dry dock counterparts, being used for construction, repairs, refits and restorations of spacecraft. Some play significant plot roles, others hide in the background in many sci-fi media.

Such science fiction settings as Star Wars, Babylon 5, the Honorverse[9] and the Foundation series mention or allude substantially to such facilities.

Star Trek

Space docks of varying styles and sizes have made a number of appearances in the Star Trek science fiction universe. Often they were shown as open, metal framed structures in which a vessel could be docked. The first such drydock was seen in Star Trek: The Motion Picture with the refit USS Enterprise (NCC-1701) contained within such an "orbital dockyard" before being sent to intercept an alien vessel on course for Earth — "chronologically" speaking in the storyline, an earlier example (set in 2151) also housed the first Enterprise of Capt. Jonathan Archer at the start of the Star Trek: Enterprise series.

A larger facility, known as Earth Spacedock was seen for the first time in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock. These were huge orbital command installations incorporating internal space docks that could be completely enclosed - starships could enter through bay doors to receive supplies or maintenance.

A third type of space dock was seen occasionally in The Next Generation and following series. This type of dock had a large command pod at the top, with arms underneath that could house a starship. The Enterprise-D was refitted and repaired in such a dock following combat with the Borg in 2367.

Babylon 5

Dock facilities were occasionally seen on the Babylon 5 television series and movies. In the Babylon 5 universe, the space docks were structures deployed outside the station when larger ships were in need of repair. The Babylon-station itself effectively served as a Space dock with internal docking facilities for freighters, personal transport vessels and its own complement of fighter-craft designated to protect the station.

During the events of the movie A Call to Arms, the Excalibur and the Victory were shown in the dry dock facilities in which they were constructed. The dock was destroyed by the Drakh following their attack on Earth, which would halt the construction of further Victory class destroyers until the facilities could be rebuilt.

Star Wars

Large space dock facilities were common above major ship-building worlds, such as Sullust and Corellia. Most notably, the massive Kuat Drive Yards corporation owned many facilities in the extensive moon system in the Kuat system and even a massive ringworld dry dock around Kuat (the planet) itself.

References

  1. ^ Architecting Rapid Growth in Space Logistics Capabilities Archived 2 April 2006 at the Wayback Machine - Snead, James Michael; American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, 2004)
  2. ^ Near-Term Manned Space Logistics Operations - Air & Space Power Journal, 31 August 2005
  3. ^ NASA ponders second repair in space - CNN.com, Thursday 4 August 2005
  4. ^ Prospects for Interstellar Starship Design Based on Current Technologies (.DOC) - Gourley, Jim; United States Air Force Academy, paper for 2001 CSGC Undergraduate Space Research Symposium of the Colorado Space Grant Consortium
  5. ^ "NASA - Ares I Crew Launch Vehicle". NASA. 29 April 2009. Retrieved 13 May 2009.
  6. ^ Please refer to Vision for Space Exploration#Outline.
  7. ^ Please refer to Space elevator#Counterweight.
  8. ^ Please refer to Space elevator#Extraterrestrial elevators.
  9. ^ Shipyard types (forum post regarding the Honorverse space docks, alleged to be from David Weber himself)
11001001

"11001001" is the fifteenth episode of the first season of the American science fiction television series Star Trek: The Next Generation. It was first broadcast on February 1, 1988, in the United States in broadcast syndication. It was written by Maurice Hurley and Robert Lewin, and directed by Paul Lynch.

Set in the 24th century, the series follows the adventures of the crew of the Starfleet starship Enterprise-D. In this episode, members of an alien race called the Bynars hijack a nearly evacuated Enterprise while retrofitting the computer in space dock.

Make-up supervisor Michael Westmore created the look of the Bynars, who were four women in extensive make-up. The musical score was scored by Ron Jones. Reviewers praised the Bynars themselves, and the response to the episode was generally positive, with one critic calling it the best of the season. It was awarded an Emmy Award for Outstanding Sound Editing for a Series.

Charles Correll (director)

Charles Correll Jr. (January 23, 1944 – June 4, 2004) was an American television director and cinematographer. The son of Charles Correll Sr. of the sitcom Amos & Andy, his brother is Richard Correll, a former child actor and later a television director.

Counterweight

A counterweight is a weight that, by exerting an opposite force, provides balance and stability of a mechanical system. Its purpose is to make lifting the load more efficient, which saves energy and is less taxing on the lifting machine.Counterweights are often used in traction lifts (elevators), cranes and funfair rides. In these applications, the expected load multiplied by the distance that load will be spaced from the central support (called the "tipping point") must be equal to the counterweight's mass times its distance from the tipping point in order to prevent over-balancing either side. This distance times mass is called the load moment.A counterbalance is a weight or force that balances or offsets another as when two objects of equal weight, power, or influence are acting in opposition to each other. The objects are then said to be in counterbalance.

Destination Nerva

Destination: Nerva is an audio drama based on the long-running British science fiction television series Doctor Who. This audio drama was produced by Big Finish Productions.

Tom Baker played the Fourth Doctor from 1974 to 1981. Although Big Finish Productions has been producing audio dramas with all the other living, Classic Series Doctors since 1999, Tom Baker had declined to participate. Baker finally reprised the role in a series of audio dramas for the BBC in 2009, starting with Hornets' Nest. Destination Nerva is the first in a series of audio dramas produced by Big Finish Productions. It was followed by The Renaissance Man.

Dry dock

A dry dock (sometimes dry-dock or drydock) is a narrow basin or vessel that can be flooded to allow a load to be floated in, then drained to allow that load to come to rest on a dry platform. Dry docks are used for the construction, maintenance, and repair of ships, boats, and other watercraft.

Earth Spacedock

Earth Spacedock is a fictional space station orbiting Earth in the Star Trek universe, designed originally by David Carson and Nilo Rodis of Industrial Light and Magic in the 1980s. It is large enough to contain several starships of that fictional universe, and in real life the Spacedock consisted of a series of sets, miniatures, and designs that were used for various films and television shows in the 1980s and 1990s. Written spacedock (one word), it is first seen in the 1984 theater film Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, and subsequently in the fourth, fifth, and sixth Star Trek movies.

The spacedock also makes appearances in The Next Generation-era trilogy of seven season shows (TNG, Deep Space Nine, and Voyager) of the 1980s and 1990s. Space stations of this class in orbit around other places are shown many times in TNG, In this era before computer generated spacecraft, models were expensive so they were often re-used to increase efficiency of the budget. In 2015 a set of artwork printings and miniature model of the Spacedock design went to auction for over GB£5,000.One filming model for the interior (for spacecraft shots inside the dock) was 30 ft (9.1 m) across and was built by Industrial Light and Magic special effect makers for motion pictures and TV. This was an advanced model in an era before computer generated images became common, and it had various neon lights and doors which could open for the special effects shots. The design contained miles/kilometers of fiberoptics for lighting.Earth Spacedock has a cameo of sorts, shown being underconstruction in Earth orbit in the season one finale of Star Trek: Discovery, a show set a decade before the original Star Trek (1966-69) in its primary science fiction universe.

List of Commodore VIC-20 games

This is a list of games for the Commodore VIC-20 personal computer, sorted alphabetically. See lists of video games for other gaming platforms. A section at the bottom contains games written by hobbyists long after the mainstream popularity of the VIC-20 waned. Many of these are unlicensed clones of arcade games or games from other systems.

List of fictional spacecraft

This is a list of fictional spacecraft, starships and exo-atmospheric vessels that have been identified by name in notable published works of fiction. The term "spacecraft" is mainly used to refer to spacecraft that are real or conceived using present technology. The terms "spaceship" and "starship" are generally applied only to fictional space vehicles, usually those capable of transporting people. Spaceships are often one of the key plot devices in science fiction. Numerous short stories and novels are built up around various ideas for spacecraft, and spacecraft have featured in many films and television series. Some hard science fiction books focus on the technical details of the craft. Some fictional spaceships have been referenced in the real world, notably Starship Enterprise from Star Trek which gave its name to Space Shuttle Enterprise and to the VSS Enterprise.

For other ships from Star Wars, Star Trek, Robotech, and other major franchises, see the separate lists linked below.

List of films featuring space stations

There is a body of films that feature space stations. Science fiction films have featured both real-life space stations like the International Space Station and Mir as well as fictional ones, such as the Death Star and the Satellite of Love.

Outline of science fiction

The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to science fiction:

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Solarquest

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SolarQuest has attracted a renewed following in recent years due to its availability on eBay and other auction sites. Brost ran a successful Kickstarter campaign (Nov. 8 - Dec. 25, 2016) to fund his new release of SolarQuest, expected to enter production in 2017. This "Deluxe Edition" will include more up-to-date astronomical data, a magnetic Fuel Tank Card (preventing the accidental movement of its metal markers), modernized graphics, and enhanced gameplay.

Space Angel

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The series chronicled the adventures of three astronauts who worked for the Earth Bureau of Investigation's Interplanetary Space Force on board the spaceship Starduster: Captain/Pilot Scott McCloud, also known as "The Space Angel" (voiced by Ned Lefebver), Electronics/Communications expert Crystal Mace (voiced by Margaret Kerry), and the immensely strong Scottish born Gunner/Engineer Taurus (voiced by Hal Smith).

Space stations and habitats in fiction

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Vandals of the Void

Vandals of the Void is a science fiction young adult novel by American writer Jack Vance, published in 1953. It was his first novel, although he was already known for his many short stories.

Vandals involves the adventures of teenager Dick Murdock, who travels from his home on Venus to work with this father at an observatory on the Moon. Dick's ship is attacked by space pirates and he becomes involved in the effort to stop them and their mysterious leader, The Basilisk.

Vision for Space Exploration

The Vision for Space Exploration (VSE) was a plan for space exploration announced on January 14, 2004 by President George W. Bush. It was conceived as a response to the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster, the state of human spaceflight at NASA, and as a way to regain public enthusiasm for space exploration. It was replaced by the space policy of the Barack Obama administration in June 2010.

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