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JAFARR November 6th, 2010 11:01 AM

Low & E-low berth questions
 
For some reason the ship's crew has to take to the low berths and hope for rescue: 1. What ship systems must remain in operation to support the berths?
2. How long can the berths be sustained provided the requirements in question 1 are met?
3. How long can the human body survive in cold sleep?
4. Is it possible for some member(s) of the crew to be automatically revived to periodically revive the others to prolong that time if revival and re-entering cold sleep will extend that time?
5. What kind of ship would possibly have the capabilities to perform the function(s) necessary to perform question 4 if that is possible?

HG_B November 6th, 2010 11:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JAFARR (Post 361053)
1. What ship systems must remain in operation to support the berths?

Power supply

Quote:

Originally Posted by JAFARR (Post 361053)
2. How long can the berths be sustained provided the requirements in question 1 are met?

Almost indefinitely

Quote:

Originally Posted by JAFARR (Post 3610533)
. How long can the human body survive in cold sleep?

See #2

Quote:

Originally Posted by JAFARR (Post 361053)
4. Is it possible for some member(s) of the crew to be automatically revived to periodically revive the others to prolong that time if revival and re-entering cold sleep will extend that time?

See #2

Quote:

Originally Posted by JAFARR (Post 361053)
5. What kind of ship would possibly have the capabilities to perform the function(s) necessary to perform question 4 if that is possible?

See #2

HiverLord November 6th, 2010 11:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JAFARR (Post 361053)
For some reason the ship's crew has to take to the low berths and hope for rescue: 1. What ship systems must remain in operation to support the berths?

At a minimum, the power plant (at VERY low levels-just a trickle), the computer (again, at lowest levels). I'm not sure if the life support must remain active, but if so, it could be reduced to almost nothing, and/or reducing the areas of the ship where it is running to where the low berths are located.

Quote:

Originally Posted by JAFARR (Post 361053)
2. How long can the berths be sustained provided the requirements in question 1 are met?

This will mainly depend upon the amount of fuel available, which it can be assumed in this case is 'very little'. Solar panels could be deployed, which will not provide much power (assuming the ship is nowhere near a star), but may increase endurance.

Quote:

Originally Posted by JAFARR (Post 361053)
3. How long can the human body survive in cold sleep?

I don't know of any defined limits, but I've read of cases of people being revived after centuries in low berth.

Quote:

Originally Posted by JAFARR (Post 361053)
4. Is it possible for some member(s) of the crew to be automatically revived to periodically revive the others to prolong that time if revival and re-entering cold sleep will extend that time?

I've never heard if this is possible. IMO, the computer would have to be of a higher level than available on most tramp/fartrader/scout vessels that characters normally traverse the stars in (though I could be wrong here).

Quote:

Originally Posted by JAFARR (Post 361053)
5. What kind of ship would possibly have the capabilities to perform the function(s) necessary to perform question 4 if that is possible?

See answer for #4.

Hope this helps.

Icosahedron November 7th, 2010 02:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JAFARR (Post 361053)
For some reason the ship's crew has to take to the low berths and hope for rescue: 1. What ship systems must remain in operation to support the berths?

IMTU, no ships systems are necessary, in fact if the ship is completely shut down and falls to ~3K the required power input is reduced to virtually zero - much of the power requirement is to provide the temperature differential between the berth and ambient.
My berths are independently powered by RTGs: one of the few remaining uses for fission.

Quote:

2. How long can the berths be sustained provided the requirements in question 1 are met?
For the life of the RTG - several decades, possibly centuries.

Quote:

3. How long can the human body survive in cold sleep?
The human body can remain in cold sleep for centuries, and in fact there may be no upper limit. However, the process is not perfect, and the longer a body remains in cold sleep the more difficult it becomes to revive it - particularly if great care wasn't taken over the freezing process. A body frozen experimentally under controlled laboratory conditions will revive much more easily than one hurriedly frozen in an emergency. Examples of emergency cases being successfully revived after a couple of centuries are known, but rare. Laboratory experiments are often shrouded in secrecy...

Quote:

4. Is it possible for some member(s) of the crew to be automatically revived to periodically revive the others to prolong that time if revival and re-entering cold sleep will extend that time?
Theoretically, yes, but it may not make practical sense exept in the very long term. Each revival has a chance of failure, and repeated thawing and refreezing will be counter-productive. Besides which, there is a chance that the 'carer' may not survive the thawing, so a number of carers would have to be designated for redundancy. Such a process would only make sense toward the RTG's end-of-life, and even then only if another power source were available.

Quote:

5. What kind of ship would possibly have the capabilities to perform the function(s) necessary to perform question 4 if that is possible?
IMTU all ships have the capability for auto-revival, but the lack of an attending medic makes it a riskier operation. It is not a procedure of choice.

Peter Schutze November 7th, 2010 10:07 PM

While I love the idea of using RTGs for these sort of uses, the problem with RTGs is that they rely on the halflife of the radioactive element

while they last for decades or even centuries their power output continually diminishes and there is no off switch .... the power must be used or diverted to somewhere else

Icosahedron November 8th, 2010 01:33 AM

And that's a problem because...?

Patron Zero November 8th, 2010 04:14 PM

No hijack intended but I've always wondered what-how other players and referees have interpreted cold sleep units, not as to how the process works but more the hardware involved

Simply said, I've seen both dry and wet cold sleep systems depicted in such films as Alien and Event Horizon, also such raises the question of horizontal or vertical 'postures' taken by the 'sleepers.

Classic SF films such as Forbidden Planet and This Island Earth also have presented unique examples of crew protection during hyperspace-jumpspace travel but could easily enough be seen as possible variant cold sleep processes.

Myself, I've had both wet and dry options available on starships but the more 'industrial' less user-friendly cold sleep methods on 'working' vessels than say passenger liners or yachts, as such being quick and dirty and likely cheaper to operate and maintain.

Peter Schutze November 8th, 2010 06:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Icosahedron (Post 361132)
And that's a problem because...?

how do you design a device to work off 1Kw this week and do the same task in 5-10 years on only 700w ?

An RTG is going to half life down in output regardless of whether its used ... remember there is no off switch so taking an RTG out of storage after a few years will mean a lower output

after 30 odd years the RTGs on Voyager etc have "half lifed" down so far that they can only activate instruments one at a time. several other missions have had similar issues even on a shorter timescale

rancke November 8th, 2010 07:07 PM

Traveller power plants evidently contains a fair bit of handwavium. I don't recall any canonical examples[*], but there are several examples in JTAS Online adventures of people surviving for centuries in low berths (though survival chances got worse as time went by).
[*] Though I vaguely remember... wasn't there someone who survived from the end of the Rebellion till the New Era in low berth? That's 70 years. And I think there was a TD article about low berths; maybe that said something about it.
For me the bottom line is that I want the possibility of digging out someone who'd spent 500 years or 1000 or 2000 in low berth if the plot requires it. I don't mind if the survival chances are very poor over those sort of timespans, as long as they're not completely impossible. Sure, I can use misjumps and Ancient stasis fields for the same purpose, but I want low berths available too.

So as far as I'm concerned, starship power plants are able to keep up a trickle of power needed for keeping low berths running for multiple centuries.


Hans

aramis November 8th, 2010 07:20 PM

The adventre in question was Flash Forward; it was apparently written presuming TNE fuel rates for PP... and does not presume an unattended single freeze, either, IIRC.

Further, prior to MT, no requirement for power was noted for low berths; in MT, there is a constant power requirement. Specifically, 1kW. (2kW for an ELB.)

Adding a battery backup from the MT power listing: TL 9 is 0.6kWH/L, TL 15 is 7kWH/L. So a ton-displacement of batteries is 8400kWH at TL9, for 50 weeks, and 98,000kWH for 583 weeks at TL 15, or just over 11 years.


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