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solar energy in SWRPG.
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willg
Lieutenant Commander
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Joined: 29 Apr 2014
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PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2014 6:54 am    Post subject: solar energy in SWRPG. Reply with quote

Hey gang.

If memory serves, TIE fighters have solar energy panels to power their Twin Ion Engines.in space. And yet according to GG6, tramp freighters, it would take about 15 days to fully power ( recharge) a Light Freighter on a planet. Seems a bit inconsistant. Maybe its apples and oranges but at the very least, couldnt something more efficient be utilised?
Also, it doesnt take into account planets with two suns like Tatooine.

My thoughts are to equip my 3-Z with solar collectors. Could the same type of collectors from TIE figters be utilised? Obviously this isnt intended as a main power supply, but in theory as supplement. But id assume SW solar tech would be mpre advanced, yknow?

Also, this may seem crazy, but could you supercharge the solar collectors by flying close, just within safety limits of a sun.

Hypothetical stuff.
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atgxtg
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Joined: 22 Mar 2009
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PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2014 7:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are a few reason why solar panels might make more sense for a TIE fighter thsn for a Tramp Freighter.

First off, the TIE has a much lower mass and so won't need as much power to move. Nor does it have all the systems the freighter has.

Secondly, the TIE might not be using the panles to completely recharge the ship but just to supplement it. It is also possible, considering the problems the early TIEs had with the lasers taking power away from the engines, that the solar panels are only for the engines or the lasers to prevent the power drain problem.


Thirdly, nothing says you can't add more than one set of solar panels onto your freighter to cut the recharge time down, if you're willing to give us the extra tonnage.


Forthly (?), the recharge times are variable, and the 15 days probably assumes 12 hours of night, where the panels aren't recharging, and probably where the crew is using some of the power collecting during the day to run the various ship systems. So if you assume a "full day" (24 hours) of light you could cut the time in half, and if you assume the crew isn't running some ship systems off the stored power, you could probably cut it down to 2 or 3 days.

willg wrote:

My thoughts are to equip my 3-Z with solar collectors. Could the same type of collectors from TIE figters be utilised?


Yeah, if you can get them. But you might have to explain then to the officials. And since TIEs and much smaller, you'd probably need several sets to get 10 tons worth. If we assume each solar panel masses 1 ton, that would mean 5 TIEs to equal one freighter solar array.

willg wrote:
But id assume SW solar tech would be mpre advanced, yknow?


I'd agree. Our modern solar cells has about a 20% efficiency. The theoretical maximum is about 86% conversion. Let's assume solar tech in SW is about 80% efficient (or about 4 times as good as what we have on Earth today).


quote="willg"]
Also, this may seem crazy, but could you supercharge the solar collectors by flying close, just within safety limits of a sun. [/quote].

Uh, no. Solar converts have limits to how much energy that can convert at one time, and the power lines can only handle so much power, too. So there is some sort of upper limit to how fast a panel can recharge something. That limit is probably higher than the 15 days rate. Since the lower recharge rate listed is 60 days (4 times 15) I'd assume that the upper limit is probably about 4 days (about 4 times faster than the standard.
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CRMcNeill
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Joined: 05 Apr 2010
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Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Thu May 22, 2014 4:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have you considered making your solar collectors into a solar sail based auxiliary drive?
_________________
"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

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CRMcNeill
Director of Engineering
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Joined: 05 Apr 2010
Posts: 12058
Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2014 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, since I can't get this one out of my head...

Solar Sail Drive
Model: Incom Solarsailer Auxiliary Drive
Type: Civilian In-System Solar Sail Drive
Cost: 20,000 credits plus installation
Weight: 20 tons
Availability: 2
Skill: Archaic Starship Piloting
Speed: Varies based on ship's orientation to the sun.
    Sun in Fire Arc = Space
      Front = 1
      Left/Right = 2
      Rear = 3

    Modifier: Speed is affected by proximity to the sun as well.
      Proximity to Star = Speed Modifier
      Flare Zone (Mercury & Venus) = +1
      Life Zone (Earth & Mars) = None
      Outer Zone (Jupiter & Saturn) = -1
      Deep Space (Uranus, etc.) = -3
Game Notes:
-Due to the fragile nature of the drive, any damage that affects the ship's engine while the Solar Sailer is in use is increased by one level.
-Furling or unfurling the sail requires 5 rounds, and the ship's main drive can not be used simultaneously with the solar sail.
-Doubles as a Solar Convertor system, with the recharge rate also dependent on distance from the system's star (5 days in the Flare Zone, 15 in the Life Zone and 60 in the Outer Zone).
-While the sail is deployed, the ship's Front Fire Arc weapons can not be utilized, as the sail blocks their line of fire. However, weapons can be added to the masthead to circumvent this rule.

Capsule:
An enhancement of the solar convertor system for tramp freighters, this drive system takes the concept a step further by using the massive solar convertor sail to catch solar wind and provide thrust while simultaneously charging the ship's fuel cells.

When not in use, the drive retracts into a pod mounted on the ship's bow. On activation, the pod opens and extends a telescoping main mast and sail out to a length of 100 meters, deploying a circular solar conversion sail approximately 160 meters in diameter. The solar sail is stabilized by a low-power tractor beam array that also provides limited protection from navigational damage (although the sail is still quite fragile).

This drive is a popular modification for scouts, who like the combination of being able to recharge their main fuel cells while remaining somewhat mobile. A common tactic is to use a standard hyperdrive and ion drive to enter a star system, then deploy the sail while performing a system survey and recharging their drives, then reversing the process to move on to the next system.
_________________
"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

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Last edited by CRMcNeill on Sun May 25, 2014 6:40 pm; edited 1 time in total
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willg
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PostPosted: Sun May 25, 2014 6:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That...thats freaking awesome. Thanks.
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CRMcNeill
Director of Engineering
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Joined: 05 Apr 2010
Posts: 12058
Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Sun May 25, 2014 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad you like. It's been floating around in my head for a couple weeks, and it seemed like a more appealing alternative to simple solar convertors.
_________________
"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

The CRMcNeill Stat/Rule Index
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willg
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PostPosted: Sun May 25, 2014 7:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You put a lot of thought and detail into that. The ol, 3-Z will certainly benefit from this.
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CRMcNeill
Director of Engineering
Director of Engineering


Joined: 05 Apr 2010
Posts: 12058
Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Sun May 25, 2014 7:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As an afterthought, perhaps Maneuverability should also be affected by proximity to the system star, maybe...
    Proximity = Maneuverability modifier

    Flare Zone = +1D
    Life Zone = +0D
    Outer Zone = -1D
    Deep Space = -3D


EDIT: Actually, scratch this. Under the GG6 ship modification chapter, maneuverability is separate from a ship's drive.
_________________
"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

The CRMcNeill Stat/Rule Index
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willg
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Joined: 29 Apr 2014
Posts: 171

PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2014 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A mad Idea i had was for solar absorbant paint, the entire surface of the ship being an energy collector. Sounds crazy, but theres this wonderful real world substance called Aerogel.

The tiny crystal photoelectric cell partcles are suspended in a conductive graphene aerogel, which is painted onto the surface of a ship. The power is siphoned at certain hull points, into the ships power storage cells or wherever.


Just a thought, no idea how youd RPG stat it. And its purley a power collection medium, the solar sail also has the perk of being a propulsion method.

And you can have it in any colour, as long as its Matte black lol.
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CRMcNeill
Director of Engineering
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Joined: 05 Apr 2010
Posts: 12058
Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2014 5:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You could also with thermocouple technology, which basically converts heat directly into electricity. It's how touch-screens function in modern smart phones and tablets. At sci-fi levels, you could include a thermocouple layer into a suit of body armor or into a reactor that would not only drain off excess heat but convert it to usable energy in the process.
_________________
"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

The CRMcNeill Stat/Rule Index
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willg
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Posts: 171

PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2014 5:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice. Love a good thermocouple.
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