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Colonial shield and armour systems on fans speculation......

#1 User is offline   wilburbud the cat Icon

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Posted 07 June 2008 - 07:20 AM

Battlestars, and presumably other Colonial vessels displayed two "passive" defense systems, their armour and a specialized "force shielding". Mention was also made by Commander Cain of "electronic defense shielding". The effectivness and nature of this armour can be seen in the following images;


This is the Galactica under attack. Two Cylon raider blasts are headed toward its front quarter


This is the same scene, several frames later. The attacking raider is visible and its bolts are about to strike.


This is one frame later. The entire panel, some 5-10% of the length of the ship, glows brilliantly.


This is the next frame. The panel glows even more brightly. In the frame after this, the panel stops glowing.

Using these images we have evidence of thermal superconductivity in the hull armour of a colonial battlestar. The bolts hit near the back of the panel (which is a couple of hundred metres long), yet the entire panel appears to achieve roughly uniform luminosity in less than a thirtieth of a second. It appears to be absorbing the energy of the bolt, dissipating it across the entire surface area of the panel, and then re-radiating it back into space, without suffering any visible damage. We cannot say how this technology operates(although it's impossible with our present-day technology), but it is observable that the armour is demonstrating the ability to absorb, rapidly dissipate, and then re-radiate incoming energy.

One of the most recognizable scenes in BsG is the closing of the armoured doors over the large "window" on the bridge whenever a battle alert is declared. These armoured shutters may simply be a redundant system to protect a vulnerable area(presumably such shutters close on the other "windows" through out the ship), but it may also be that the closing of these shutters may also act as the closing of a circuit that allows the hull to achieve thermal superconductivity.

In the episode "Experiment in Terra" the Battlestar Galactica displays for the first time her "force-shielding". This is a energy shield that is/can be projected from the Battlestars per this bit of dialouge;

ADAMA: "Battlestations! Stand-by force-shields!"
OMEGA: "Force-shields standing-by."
ADAMA: "Maximum laser power stand-by!"
OMEGA: "Laser power is standing by."
ADAMA: "Positive shield now!"

It is possible that Adama ordered the powering up of the lasers simply as SOP, or it may be that the laser/blaster turrets are used to project the shielding itself. In either case once the "force-shield" is deployed it is capable of protecting a planetary sized body from simple missiles and absorbing many thousands of mid-range yield thermo-nuclear warheads as shown below;







A reasonable question at this point would be why did they not use this force-shielding against the many waves of Cylon Raiders who attacked her throughout the series, paticularly the suicide squadrons which have proved so damaging. It is possible that this force shielding is only effective against "primitive" weapons, such as ballistic missiles and that the Cylons possess ECM(electronic counter measures)that would allow them to easily defeat this type of shielding. It may be that the force-shielding is a technological holdover from an earlier era in the war when weapons such as these missiles were used, much like the star chamber seen in "Hand of God".

As for Commander Cain's "electronic defense shielding" we have no evidence of what its nature or purpose was. However it has been noted that at the Battle of Molecay that the rate of fire and accuracy of the two lead Baseships was less than one would expect given their overwhelming advantage. Given that, it is possible that the "electronic defense shielding" refers to a weapons/sensor jamming of some type.




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#2 User is offline   DecepticonSpike Icon

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Posted 08 June 2008 - 01:32 PM

I never noticed the glowing panel absorbing the blast before. Can you tell me what episode it's from? I'd like to see if I can spot it myself.
As for the force-shield that blocked the nukes, I think you may be right. It may have been out of date tech that was never removed, just like the celestial chamber.
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#3 User is offline   wilburbud the cat Icon

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Posted 11 June 2008 - 04:12 PM

Thanks. I took the sequence from Saga of StarWorld, however the sequence appears in Lost Planet of the Gods and Living Legend as well.


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#4 User is offline   DecepticonSpike Icon

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Posted 12 June 2008 - 08:43 PM

I'll look for it. Thanks!
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#5 User is offline   Aussie Trekkie Icon

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Posted 17 June 2008 - 07:04 PM

If it is missile killing defence wouldn't it also kill the electrical systems of the Cylon Raiders and the Colonial Vipers if it was some form of EMP weapon?
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#6 User is offline   wilburbud the cat Icon

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Posted 09 July 2008 - 10:34 PM

QUOTE (Aussie Trekkie @ Jun 18 2008, 12:04 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
If it is missile killing defence wouldn't it also kill the electrical systems of the Cylon Raiders and the Colonial Vipers if it was some form of EMP weapon?


If it is EMP based, yes possibly. However Vipers at least seem to be hardened to an extremely high degree given that Starbuck was flying his starhound around Terra in the vicinity of multiple nuclear detonations.


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#7 User is offline   Captain Taurus Icon

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Posted 10 July 2008 - 08:11 PM

QUOTE (wilburbud the cat @ Jul 10 2008, 03:34 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
If it is EMP based, yes possibly. However Vipers at least seem to be hardened to an extremely high degree given that Starbuck was flying his starhound around Terra in the vicinity of multiple nuclear detonations.



I would think that the emp would only be effective during detonation, anything afterwards is going to be missed including Starbuck's Viper. I could be wrong but that is my understanding as to how EMP works. Only during an atmospheric detonation can an emp have any impact. Unless it is artificially generated.

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#8 User is offline   wilburbud the cat Icon

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Posted 11 July 2008 - 09:41 PM

"Beyond a certain altitude a nuclear weapon will not produce any EMP, as the gamma rays will have had sufficient distance to disperse. In deep space or on worlds with no magnetic field (the moon or Mars for example) there will be little or no EMP. This has implications for certain kinds of nuclear rocket engines."

So the question would seem to be at what distance from or in Terra's atmosphere the warheads explosion took place and where was Starbuck's Viper in relation. My understanding is that expermintation has been done out to 300Km. This was part of program investigating EMP effect on sattelites.


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#9 User is offline   viper73 Icon

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 11:24 PM

cool find. I never noticed this either but has t be a sheild if there was no dmage in that area after the panel stopped glowing
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