The phrase “power every toaster on a medium sized planet for seven minutes” can be extrapolated pretty easily with some basic assumptions, some of which may prove not to be true but will give a ballpark estimate of the firepower of these ships. If I go awry in my math or calculations I apologize, but don’t hesitate to point it out. First according to ABS Alaskan an average toaster consumes between 800-1500 watts, but without knowing how many toasters there are we can’t do anything, so we need to determine what a medium sized planet it. When we say a medium sized country we usually mean a country about 1/4 the size, or there about, of one we would consider large. Now if we assume that Earth would be considered a large planet because of how much strain we’re putting on the environment and it’s natural resources then that means we can ballpark a medium planet at around 1.5 billion people. However not everyone owns a toaster, usually most people own one toaster for each four people, at least in my experience. So 1.5 billion people divided by four is 375 million toasters. So 375 million times 800-1500 watts is 300 billion to 652 billion watts, a watt is a joule per second so if you can multiply that value by a value in seconds the seconds cancel and you’re left with joules. We have that unit of time in seven minutes, or in this case 420 seconds. So the Cruiser Beam Laser produces 126 trillion joules to 274 trillion joules of energy. Now one kiloton of TNT is 4.184*10^12 joules, so one shot from a Cruiser Beam Laser produces approximately 30 to 65 kilotons of TNT in explosive power. Which means that each point of damage in this game is between .5 and 1.25 kilotons of TNT, so every broadside you put into space has more explosive power then every weapon used in the second world war including Nagasaki and Hiroshima. Well, if you put lots of high damage weapons on it anyway
This definitely made me smile
Neat, so how much power does a shield use in order to absorb all that energy?
Damn, I must stop reading this forum while being at work, it made me laugh out loud, literally speaking…
Doing some similar horrible “estimate-it-from-top-of-you-head” task right now, I am pretty sure, that based on the power requirements of that beam, we can translate single one point of energy requirement into exact kiloton value, and extrapolate the power output of all beam-like (in contrary to explosive-like) weapons.
Anybody for the task?
PS. I assume that there are no energy losses and such, but hey, this is not rocket science, is it
It’s pretty easy since reactors are usually measured in watts anyway, it just means that you take the wattage of a single beam and divide it by the power required to fire the weapon. As I recall Cruiser Beam Lasers take 14 power, so each point of power is between about 25 and 55 gigawatts. Which of course means a power heavy ship can go into the Terawatts, and since in 2004 the US used on average 3.35 terawatts most ships will have a similar power production to the United States. Most fleets on a small or smallish medium map will have the power output in the same range as the whole world. On a large map your fleet will have an average rate of energy consumption perhaps even as high as 10 times that of the Earth. This is of course assuming that Cruiser Beam Lasers are 100% efficient in their power usage, if they’re not then each point of power gets bigger.
It makes me curious as to what sort of unobtanium the ships hulls are made of to not boil away in seconds after a cruiser beam hits them. Something similar to Niven’s Ringworld?
No. His Ringworld material would hold up very poorly to that kind of punishment. But he did come up with one that might work. If memory serves, the first ship sent to the Ringworld was made of it.
So if we hook up a Flux Capacitor to one of the reinforced power generators, we would actually be able to send our DeLorean…errrrr…space ship back in time to blow up the alien fleet before they even got off the ground? Sweet…
The Ringworld is made out of scrith, and would actually be better than whatever the ships actually are using for armour. I won’t go in to plot details, but let’s just say that nothing short of the fist of God would hurt the Ringworld.
The Long Shot, the ship that first explored the Ringworld, was built around a General Products Hull. There are only two weaknesses in the GP Hull, one a minor quirk based on the lack of a moon around the Puppeteer homeworld, the other fatal. GP Hulls would make for rather slow and tedious gameplay.
Woot for out-nerding a bunch of sci-fi nerds.