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Long time since I posted here, but now I have been tinkering in my mind about a new concept of mesonguns. Specially for giant starships.

For some reason I find spinalmounts on large starships (10K disptons or more) quite unfeasable in terms of aiming this thing. And it will be even worse at close quarters as the whole ship is gyrating to aim at an enemy the structure will liley be put under a lot of stress.

Another point is that bays are limited to firing arcs depending on their placement on the ship. However a sperical pod (much like a deep meson site planetside) the entire gun may swivel independent of the ship that houses it. However the backdraw is that the weapons will take up a lot of space. A 30 meter long gun will take up about 1000 displacement tons. That is a lot of space that can be used for fuel and other systems.

However the advantage is there, and as the TL increases the tunnel length may go down to save on precious space.

In order for it to work the pod must have its own powerplant. Beam pointer will be out of the question as the entire weapon is encapsulated. However a MFD either mounted seperate or inside the pod. The pod must also have its own Gcomp field as it may have a different orientation than the rest of the ship. Life support may also be seperate from the rest of the ship.

Spinal mounts will outperform these babies in all aspects (range, damage and size) except for the aiming. If we talk game mechanics, it can be quite difficult to aim the nose of a starship at a target.
Why couldn't you have a beam pointer?
Why fully enclosed?
Why wasted space?

Now if your talking about a self-contained system you may have a point. obviously the power plant and fuel would have to be "inside the sphere".
But if the sphere was mounted outside the ship and not enclosed, say on a wing etc. Then you could have a beam pointer as well.

Of course you'll also need a computer, etc. if it is a stand alone system.....

Okay, lets see a design......
I have a design ready, however I need to tidy it up a bit and get it typed down.

The "pod" or more properly internal bay or site has a DT of 700, TL 15. Range little more than 30 000Km
Effect: 19000Mj
Armor: 50
Internal powerplant with 1 month fuel: 585MW
Seperate environment controls and artificial gravity (as the orientation can be way different from the rest of the ship)
Airlocks: 4
Crew: 19 (Gunnery 11, Maint 3, Eng 3, Command 2)
Small staterooms for everyone including galley (from FF&S2).

The weapon takes about 86% ov the volume.
I'll try to get it finished properly during the weekend.
I haven't looked into meson beams as presented in Traveller, but I'm guessing any beam weapon can be directed just about any direction engineering chooses to direct it. I've played around with laser weapon systems that are completely internal to the craft and directed around to the various turrets as needed, by demand from a turret's fire control. With advanced materials, reflective losses are almost nil, especially in vacuum. The advantage is in doing away with certain limits on hardpoints on a given hull, and allowing multiple uses of the hardpoints for more weapon variety in the same weapons bays available.

Interesting topic. I'm certainly going to look into it more as time permits. I don't know how Traveller handles the physics of it. Laser cavities certainly don't have to be linear, or take up lots of space, so I need to know what's so special about the other beam weapons that requires such lengths they have to be spinal mounts.
I can't get your link to work, but this one does


Neat idea by the way
There must be some technique that lets Spinal Mounts "fine tune" the aiming process. Trying to hit a 100 meter long target at 300,000km require an accuracy of about 1/100th of an arc-second. A large ship just can't be that accurate I feel. They must simply need to get the ship aimed "reasonably" close and then perhaps some magnetic field is used for final adjustment. So at the outset I think the actual need for such a device is non-existent.

Next, Meson Gun range is directly proportional to the tube length. A 100-Ton bay gun fitting within the FF&S specs of 16m on the long side has an extreme range of 5 hexes. Its short range is 0-1 hexes. In a world where the cheapest small lasers are doing damage at 10 hexes, closing to 5 to just get the shots off seems like a bad idea.

A 100-Ton bay gun converted in to a Meson Pod mount would jump from 100 dTons to 1225 dTons.

A 40 hex range Meson Gun is a spinal mount and must be 120m long. That fits nicely, if a wee bit cramped, in a 10,000 ton hull.

Make that a Meson Pod mount and you're up to over a 1,000,000 dTons just for the gun.

Deep Meson Sites do exactly this, and there's a design sequence for them. But we have a lot more displacement room on a planet than we do a starship.
Next, Meson Gun range is directly proportional to the tube length.
I still havne't checked into it, but if they work off the principle of a longer cavity length between couplers, then it's not necessarily a requirement it be in a straight line.
Hmm, what if you built it as a spiral, like a corckscrew, to get more length from a given volume.
Or it could be a ring, or series of rings...
Well, if it can spiral, that would make the Meson Gun a much more powerful weapon, because the length requirement to be effective can certainly be a burden to designers. Remove that burden and make the system more compact, even with similar volume, and you have some interesting possibilities.

The Discharge Energy is also a primary factor in volume. It essentially, albeit indirectly, affects the tube diameter.

There's a blurb in FF&S1 mentioning that there are 3 Meson mounts for spacehips: spinal, parallel, and bay. That sort of implies that the tube need be straight to me.
Well a meson gun is basically a big particle accelerator isn't it? And particle accelerators certainly don't need to be straight at all (and in fact aren't usually - a lot of the ones we have at the moment are circular). So long as you have some means by which to guide the mesons as they accelerate (insert armwave here involving nuclear dampers or electromagnetic fields) then you can twist the barrel any way you like.

That said, we know that meson screens work by using nuclear dampers to cause the mesons to decay at a distance from the target, but can anything actually bend their path? (this isn't helped by the fact that the "mesons" aren't really mesons at all but instead seem to be something entirely non-existent, so we don't really have anything real-world to go by here)