Haumea Colony

A Play-by-Nova roleplay game.

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Stem the Flow

Posted on Thu Mar 30th, 2023 @ 2:24pm by Lieutenant Colonel Shaun Bradley & Lieutenant JG Kikua Mahone & Master Chief Petty Officer Lucas Nilsson

768 words; about a 4 minute read

Mission: Roll With It

Lucas hunched over the force field generator the local Marine complement had been kind enough to provide. "Do you have any experience operating these, sir?" he asked Shaun.

"When Falkirk's main power was failing, we used them attached to shuttles to keep the cold out of the hangar doors. Kept the heat in relatively well," the Colonel mused as he watched. "Mind you, different application, what do you have in mind Master Chief?"

Lucas continued examining the controls, trying to figure out how the shield generator was operated. "If we tune the frequency just right, I believe we should be able to block the flow of power through the conduit below us with the field. Of course, I'm just an old structural engineer, so energy barriers really aren't my specialty," he said with a wry smile.

Slipping out of his uniform jacket, Shaun rolled up his sleeves and pointed to the two emitters. "Push those further apart, you're treating them like you're blocking a physical space. We're looking to disrupt the EM field of the energy." The marines use a similar idea around Falkirk, if you tried to pass between the vehicle towers without authorization the force field would short out the systems. Made it a lot easier to stop them and capture them then getting into a firefight. "The field is going to be strained, so as the energy passes through it's basically going to sap it off. You're just going to need to find a place to dump the excess power. Lieutenant," he said nodding to the engineering officer, "Can we shunt power back into the rest of the grid without issues?"

Lucas nodded along as Shaun explained his idea. "I agree, the Lieutenant may know more than I do about energy grids," he replied, looking toward Kikua for input about shunting the power.

"These energy grids?" Kikua shrugged. "There shouldn't be too much an issue with these grids. They're designed to recycle the power supply, so it's just kinda like fiddling with the source. Kind of." He was still floored that there was a program that could redirect power to a whole colony. "We just gotta do it slow or else it'll overload something."

"That's got to be our best way forward. Slowly siphon it away." Shaun pulled up a holographic heat map of the town's power grid. "It looks like the Starfleet facilities have the most room for power flow management. We can probably crank it that way, and then distribute the rest of the power flow elsewhere. Like opening dams to allow water to flow out properly. But here I am just relying on your expertise, so by all means tell me the best path forward."

"Before we do this, we'll need to make sure that the redirected power is balanced and doesn't overload any conduits or systems," Lucas said, "I think we can have the computer manage that with some small changes to the energy grid program. However, some parts of our grid are left over from the old colony, so it might be a bit convoluted."

"What do you need to make sure we don't see any issue then? I'll get teams on it right now," Replied Shaun.

"We'll need someone to monitor the systems from a central location and shut down the grid if things start getting out of hand. It would just be a matter of watching if power output goes out of a certain range and pressing a button if it does, so most anyone could do it, as long as they're not prone to daydreaming," Lucas replied.

Tapping his combadge, Shaun hailed the engineering teams near the controls. "This is Colonel Bradley, I need someone to monitor power flow and avoid overloading the grid." He didn't wait for a response. "It's done, do it."

"Good. Let's get ready to 'clamp' the conduit then," Lucas continued, "We just need to tune the settings so it doesn't affect any of the other nearby conduits. Colonel, sir, what setting would you recommend so that this only generates a force field say two meters in diameter?"

"You'll want to run a feedback, and keep the field no more than fifty microns across. That keeps the stability in this sizing, while allowing the field to more accurately absorb a lot of the excess energy without overloading. But keep in mind, a city grid is outside of my usual field of perview, you might need to adjust that," Shaun added.

"Noted," Lucas replied. Turning to Kikua, he asked, "Any final thoughts before we get this show on the road, sir?"

"Pull the lever."


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