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Old 10-01-2010, 11:31 AM   #31
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: Seaplanes & Submarines

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Originally Posted by RogerBW View Post
I do think you'd see more development of retractable floats for long-range and fighter aircraft than happened historically, and you might get the occasional ZLT experiment for land-based interceptors (rocket rails, etc.).
It's probably worth remembering that c. 1930 the fastest airplanes in he world were the float-plane racers of the Schneider Cup.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schneider_Trophy

These happened to include the progenitor of the Spitfire. so at least for short-range fighters you're not looking at that much performance loss.

Many designs primarily intended for land use had floats that could be added, including the DC-3.

Also, just before and mostly into WWII the largest airplanes in the world were seaplanes.

In terms of pre-WWII aircraft you're losing very little by going to float-planes and boat-hulled seaplanes.
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Old 10-01-2010, 12:45 PM   #32
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According to TV Tropes there was only one time when both were submerged.
HMS Venturer sunk U-864 while both were submerged. However, it is to be noted that the U-864 apparently turned into the path of the 4th torpedo while trying to avoid the first three fired by HMS Venturer.

Last edited by LostPassWord; 10-01-2010 at 12:58 PM.
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Old 10-01-2010, 08:27 PM   #33
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Default Re: Seaplanes & Submarines

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
This setting just must have the grandparent of this.
You mean this?
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Old 10-01-2010, 10:01 PM   #34
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Most ocean going subs of this era (as compared to coastal subs) had a safe diving depth of around 100m or yards, which should be sufficient. Even coastal subs could usually make 75m.
Thing is, Diesel-Electrics can't stay driving that long on batteries. 8-12 hours propulsion, IIRC. A couple days at loiter. And typical submerged speeds of 5-10kts. (roughly 7-14kph)... I was talking snorkel sizes to avoid weather while on diesel.
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Old 10-01-2010, 10:08 PM   #35
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Default Re: Seaplanes & Submarines

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Captain Nemo's Nautilus was hinted to be nuclear powered.
Verne predicted nuclear power? Really? Can you cite the relevant part of the novel (so I don't have to go digging myself), I remember something about the power source, but not that atomic power was specified.
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Old 10-01-2010, 11:57 PM   #36
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I think the 1954 movie suggested atomic power for the Nautilus, unless I'm confusing it with USS Nautilus SSN-571, first atomic-powered submarine. Verne's original was powered by the scientific magic of the day -- electricity, before the power of the atom became a good excuse for anything in Golden Age SF.

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Originally Posted by 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
"But of what use is this refuge, Captain? The Nautilus wants no port."

"No, sir; but it wants electricity to make it move, and the wherewithal to make the electricity--sodium to feed the elements, coal from which to get the sodium, and a coal-mine to supply the coal. And exactly on this spot the sea covers entire forests embedded during the geological periods, now mineralised and transformed into coal; for me they are an inexhaustible mine."

"Your men follow the trade of miners here, then, Captain?"

"Exactly so. These mines extend under the waves like the mines of Newcastle. Here, in their diving-dresses, pick axe and shovel in hand, my men extract the coal, which I do not even ask from the mines of the earth. When I burn this combustible for the manufacture of sodium, the smoke, escaping from the crater of the mountain, gives it the appearance of a still-active volcano."
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"There is a powerful agent, obedient, rapid, easy, which conforms to every use, and reigns supreme on board my vessel. Everything is done by means of it. It lights, warms it, and is the soul of my mechanical apparatus. This agent is electricity."

"Electricity?" I cried in surprise.

"Yes, sir."

"Nevertheless, Captain, you possess an extreme rapidity of movement, which does not agree well with the power of electricity. Until now, its dynamic force has remained under restraint, and has only been able to produce a small amount of power."

"Professor," said Captain Nemo, "my electricity is not everybody's. You know what sea-water is composed of. In a thousand grammes are found 96 1/2 per cent. of water, and about 2 2/3 per cent. of chloride of sodium; then, in a smaller quantity, chlorides of magnesium and of potassium, bromide of magnesium, sulphate of magnesia, sulphate and carbonate of lime. You see, then, that chloride of sodium forms a large part of it. So it is this sodium that I extract from the sea-water, and of which I compose my ingredients. I owe all to the ocean; it produces electricity, and electricity gives heat, light, motion, and, in a word, life to the Nautilus."
...
At the bottom was a fourth partition that separated this office from the engine-room. A door opened, and I found myself in the compartment where Captain Nemo--certainly an engineer of a very high order--had arranged his locomotive machinery. This engine-room, clearly lighted, did not measure less than sixty-five feet in length. It was divided into two parts; the first contained the materials for producing electricity, and the second the machinery that connected it with the screw. I examined it with great interest, in order to understand the machinery of the Nautilus.

"You see," said the Captain, "I use Bunsen's contrivances, not Ruhmkorff's. Those would not have been powerful enough. Bunsen's are fewer in number, but strong and large, which experience proves to be the best. The electricity produced passes forward, where it works, by electro-magnets of great size, on a system of levers and cog-wheels that transmit the movement to the axle of the screw. This one, the diameter of which is nineteen feet, and the thread twenty-three feet, performs about 120 revolutions in a second."
("Bunsen's contrivance", referred to elsewhere in the novel as a "Bunsen pile", is a kind of electric battery, though the real one didn't use sodium.)
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Old 10-02-2010, 07:48 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by Anaraxes View Post
I think the 1954 movie suggested atomic power for the Nautilus, unless I'm confusing it with USS Nautilus SSN-571, first atomic-powered submarine. Verne's original was powered by the scientific magic of the day -- electricity, before the power of the atom became a good excuse for anything in Golden Age SF.

("Bunsen's contrivance", referred to elsewhere in the novel as a "Bunsen pile", is a kind of electric battery, though the real one didn't use sodium.)
I believe somewhere in the usual translations is the phrase "disintegration of seawater" which in the early 50s may have been taken as some sort of nuclear process.

However, in light of the excerpts provided (and thank you very much for those) it seems likely that Verne intended a sort of chemical process.

In Gurps Steampunk Bill Stoddard called this system (whatever it was) "Advanced Primary Batteries" and gave it stats equal to advanced TL8 batteries from Ve2. I don't really think this was high enough to support the level of performance Verne implied. The Nautlius would have had to refuel no less than every 3 days even while loitering.

If I had t try a more detailed technobabbling I might make motions towards an anachronistic fuel cell with the "burned" coal being actually a process we'd call "coal gasification" and the sodium......well, if the sodium has to do something it can be part of some magical scheme for extracting oxygen from seawater.

Of course, if you're "disintegrating" the seawater that would imply breaking the H2O down to get you O2 and leaves you wondering what you're doing with the hydrogen. O2 and hydrogen would be ideal for a fuel cell and all you have to do is violate conservation of energy.

Verne apparently wasn't much of a chemist, probably not even for his time. Atomic power is a technobabble upgrade and would work much better.

To return to the OP's need it would also work better for his submarine freighter scheme than any sort of diesel-snorkel arrangement. Snorkels are a late WWII development and thus only 10 years before working nuclear power so you're not saving that much in SoD.
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Old 10-02-2010, 08:08 AM   #38
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I'd agree: given our modern perspective, a WW2-era atomic pile is more convincing for game purposes than any sort of battery. Especially since we're talking about large cargo submarines, it doesn't even have to be particularly ahead of its time. (SSN-571 was authorized in 1951, launched in 1954, so there's only a few years of additional post-war design time.)

If you want to combine the Verne style with fission, then I see that there's 3.3 mg of uranium per cubic meter of seawater. Perhaps these guys are rediscovering his technology. But it seems to me that somewhere on this planet of coral atolls, we'll need some mines for heavy metals, and that place will be politically and economically important.

Unless we want to put in a species of metal-concentrating coral. (No wonder it grows in big rings; the species that grew in dense groups all blew themselves up...)
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Old 10-02-2010, 09:25 AM   #39
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New Scientist recently had an article about modern efforts to make flying submarines, it gives a good overview of the problems involved and approaches to them.
http://www.newscientist.com/article/...-that-fly.html
It should give a few ideas you could include.
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Old 10-02-2010, 10:28 AM   #40
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Default Re: Seaplanes & Submarines

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Originally Posted by sir_pudding View Post
Verne predicted nuclear power? Really? Can you cite the relevant part of the novel (so I don't have to go digging myself), I remember something about the power source, but not that atomic power was specified.
Were not the novel, but the 1954 movie. One of several changes it made.
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