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Chapter 301 of Book 3 is in the queue

October 17, 2014
Posted at 1:36 pm

This week with Arlene and Jeff:

Deep Space -- The Alien Vessel

...The Chief Engineer had just finished building the fourth warp coil, and with the circuit testing now complete, he cautiously began the tuning process to synchronize that coil perfectly with the other three coils. Part of the tuning was guesswork and talent because he did not have the advanced instrumentation needed to do this properly, nor the trained personnel to operate such equipment, even if he did have it.

With jury-rigged equipment, he brought each coil to idle status in sequence. Any changes in the fourth coil would necessitate changes in the other three coils, and those changes would necessitate changes in the fourth coil, and so on, the changes becoming less and less until everything was in perfect synchronization. The concept sounded simple, but… there were eight changes that had to be made and balanced in each coil before the next coil could be tuned to it, and so on. Without the proper instrumentation, the process quickly exceeded what one mind, even backed by the ship's computer system, could accomplish. That's where the chief engineer's talent came in. He had a feel for warp coils that few others possessed. He knew he could do it; it just took time and patience. Unfortunately, his Captain did not want to allow the former, and had little to none of the latter...

Have a goodun;