Power generation

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(Star Trek Power Generation: +links)
(Star Trek Power Generation: More on the True Q blunder)
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The actual power produced by Federation power sources is unclear.  [[Commander]] [[William Riker|Riker]] once stated that the entire ''[[Enterprise-D|Enterprise]]'' could not generate a terawatt of power<ref>TNG "The Dauphin"</ref>, but subsequent events have suggested greater power generation.  The ship's warp core is known to have undergone some modifications and upgrades following Riker's statement<ref>TNG "Booby Trap"</ref>, and the [[Geordi Laforge|chief engineer]] subsequently said it could generate power "into the terawatt range"<ref>TNG "The Masterpiece Society"</ref>.
 
The actual power produced by Federation power sources is unclear.  [[Commander]] [[William Riker|Riker]] once stated that the entire ''[[Enterprise-D|Enterprise]]'' could not generate a terawatt of power<ref>TNG "The Dauphin"</ref>, but subsequent events have suggested greater power generation.  The ship's warp core is known to have undergone some modifications and upgrades following Riker's statement<ref>TNG "Booby Trap"</ref>, and the [[Geordi Laforge|chief engineer]] subsequently said it could generate power "into the terawatt range"<ref>TNG "The Masterpiece Society"</ref>.
  
At the other extreme, [[Data|Commander Data]] once said the ship's reactor was generating "12.75 billion gigawatts per (second)"<ref>TNG "True Q"</ref>.  This is a nonsensical statement, since watts per second is not a unit of power.  The word "second" was actually cut off by an alarm in the episode, but it does appear in the script, so we have a reasonable idea of what Data's next word would have been.  To add to the inaccuracy, Data was responding to a statement about the amount of ''energy'' in the warp core, which should be in either joules or watts ''multiplied by time'', not watts divided by anything.
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At the other extreme, [[Data|Commander Data]] once said the ship's reactor was generating "12.75 billion gigawatts per (second)"<ref>TNG "True Q"</ref>.  This is a nonsensical statement, since watts per second is not a unit of power. Furthermore, Data was responding to a question about the amount of energy in the warp core, which would need to be watts multiplied by time rather than divided by time as is stated in the episode.  The word "second" was actually cut off by an alarm in the episode, but it does appear in the script, so we have a reasonable idea of what Data's next word would have been.  To add to the inaccuracy, Data was responding to a statement about the amount of ''energy'' in the warp core, which should be in either joules or watts ''multiplied by time'', not watts divided by anything.
  
 
Despite the officers' statements, a plan to use the ship to stabilize the orbit of a small moon suggests considerably more than one terawatt of power generation, as much as 21,000 TW<ref>TNG "Deja Q" -- changing the velocity of a 6E13 kg mass by 4 km/s within 7 hours</ref>.  Attempting to move this moon pushed the ''Enterprise'' to its limits, but it would have been a trivial task if the ship could have applied even a small fraction of 12.75 billion gigawatts (12.75 million terawatts) to the task.
 
Despite the officers' statements, a plan to use the ship to stabilize the orbit of a small moon suggests considerably more than one terawatt of power generation, as much as 21,000 TW<ref>TNG "Deja Q" -- changing the velocity of a 6E13 kg mass by 4 km/s within 7 hours</ref>.  Attempting to move this moon pushed the ''Enterprise'' to its limits, but it would have been a trivial task if the ship could have applied even a small fraction of 12.75 billion gigawatts (12.75 million terawatts) to the task.

Revision as of 05:43, 19 May 2008

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