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Join Date: Dec 2007
06-14-2012, 10:13 PM
We have seen fighters, so we know the federation has them, they also have a fairly large and diverse set of other small craft. Now, while most shuttles are capable of warp travel (and the peregrine fighters appear to have nacelles, putting them in this category) they aren't as fast as actual starships, and, aside from the danube and delta flier class starships, aren't really shown to have the facilities and resources for long duration flight. Besides that, sitting in the cockpit for a long period of time would leave a pilot in no shape to fight once they arrive. Given that, while it is reasonable to deploy fighters to warp short distances for strikes from bases, it stands to reason carriers have to be at least nearby, if not in the fight. The klingons weren't shown to have fighters at all, so I would say the Federation has more reason to have carriers. That's not really here, nor there, though.
While it isn't cannon, the intent was for the Akira to be a carrier and torpedo boat. if you read the designer's notes, he even mentions certain design elements related to these roles, so it makes some sense to make a carrier akira.
Originally Posted by
I dissagree with this for the Federation. I personally believe that the current 2409 fighters are unmanned, remote piloted craft.
Why do I think this? Well look at the starships themselves. When the captain gives the order to travel at Warp 7, does the helmsman press the gas pedal? No, he inputs a command and hits enter. The ship does the rest. So, in effect, the ships are not piloted but given a series of commands to complete.
Now take that down to fighters. The removal of life support devices from the dedicated combat craft allow for a larger computer core, shields, room for extra weapons, etc. That would result in a more powerful ship than the regular aux craft every ship carries. So the "pilots" remain safely inside the carrier, remote piloting their craft.
Now for the attrition part of fighters. True they will be weaker than full on starships, but they have numbers on their side. Being unmanned allows for more intense combat maneuvers. A torpedo fired from a figher is going to have the same impact as one fired from a starship. So multiple waves of antimatter warheads from different angles is going to hurt no matter who you are. If you lose ships I'm sure the carrier has industrial replicators to make parts for new ships.
Well, even in TNG, small craft were shown to have escape transporters (In First Duty, some cadets who botched a stunt in trainers transported out) which seem to be aable to act rather quickly, so craft destruction doesn't guarantee pilot death.
Aside from that, what about photonics? Starfleet has been retrofitting their large craft with holographic emitters, they could do the same with small craft and have them flown by holograms. Now, I don't have much to support this, but using automatons to control a ship seems more like starfleet than having the ship fly itself or be remote controlled. besides that, holographic crew could effect makeshift repairs in space. in the event of emergency, transfer the programs back to the mothership; if it fails, they are only holograms.