Air and Space Photos from Alternate Worlds.

hopefully ignited sequentially.
How much G-load would a pair of SRB's generate on a vehicle like that?
Can’t help on the maths (other than to say a lot!) but it seems the most logical way of launching something with such short notice - using solids that is rather than trying to invent orbital refuelling quickly.

Considering that each shuttle SRB weighed 590ton however I’m not sure what the launch campaign would look like. Maybe launched segment by segment and assembled in space near the ISS/using a shuttle and its arm.

Perhaps Enterprise would be cannibalised for the cockpit, you’d need the other orbiters going flat out to bring up materials and components. Maybe the cockpit would be launched unmanned on the side of a ET/SRB stack.

Probably worth exploring some of the abandoned plans for bringing things up in the STS ET - either in the aft cargo carrier position that was abandoned after Challenger or as a hammerhead fairing - with the proviso that lack of ability for RTLS was a risk you were willing to take.

Interesting thought experiment really.
 
Jane's All the Galaxy's Fighting Starships #9 (2429 edition)

Name: U.S.S. Dallas (NX-1984)
Type: Experimental Testbed Ship/Starfleet Intelligence Special Mission Cruiser
Class: Keldon-class (19 of ?, built overall: N/A)
Nationality: Cardassian Union/Federation Starfleet (United Federation of Planets)
Service: Starfleet Service Date: 2375 - 2423)
Armaments: 9x Spiral Wave Disruptors; 6x Spiral Wave Disruptors; 2x Fore, 1x Aft Torpedo launchers
Speed: (Type 2 Scale) Warp 7 (Max Cruise), Warp 9.1 (at extreme risk)

The length and nature of the 4th Klingon War revealed a number of truths about the Federation to the general public that were somewhat contrary to the Federation's ethos, such as the clandestine existence of a small fleet of ships in various sizes that answered directly to the Commander in Chief of Starfleet and the head of Starfleet Intelligence outside the normal chain of command.

U.S.S. Dallas is one such ship. Like the rest of the Black Fleet, Dallas was primarily used for Intelligence gathering and scouting missions during the war, a vital role she performed well in, but the majorty of her service with Starfleet was before then.

Dallas started her existence as the Cardassian Navy ship Stellar Envoy. Laid down in the brief detente period between the destruction of the Obsidian Order and the arrival of the Dominion in Cardassian space, the Stellar Envoy languished as little more than the basic, bare spaceframe with a number of hull panels for several years until after the outbreak of the Dominion War.

When the Federation and the Klingon Empire proved to be a tougher nut to crack than the Dominion had anticipated, the Cardassian Central Command decided to comb through the various shipyards for halted or stalled ships that could be finished relatively quickly and the Stellar Envoy was finished in record time, using both Dominion-supplied construction methods and Cardassian convict labour. Entering service the same day Starfleet launched Operation Return, the Stellar Envoy was pressed into service without a number of minor issues that had become apparent during her abbreviated shakedown cruise ever being addressed during her brief time in Cardassian service.

When the Cardassians tried to change sides and the Dominion purged those disloyal elements they could reach, the Stellar Envoy was engaged by two Dominion ships, but an unresolved issue in the secondary EPS overloaded ninety percent of her onboard systems and the rest of the ship a drifting hulk. The survivours of the crew abandoned ship, but were executed on the spot by the Dominion. The ship itself was left adrift, and before it could either be scuttled or towed to a loyal base, a Federation Intelligence gathering raid swept through the same system.

Thus having come into the possession of a Keldon-class cruiser hull that had slagged most of it's own internal systems, most commanders would have tractored the ship into the nearest sun and moved on. However, the few systems that still worked was the structural integrity field, which left Starfleet with a fully intact hull that no one else knew about. The section of Starfleet Intelligence that oversaw the Black Fleet and Section 31 was always in the market for more ships, and the raid had been carried out by them. Therefore, it took a few hasty subspace calls, and within two hours, an S31[1] strike team had boarded the Stellar Envoy, secured her and she was under tow back to Federation lines, and on to the location of the yard that services the Black Fleet.[2]

The exact nature of the lengthy refit that followed are still classified, but what is known is that the power systems, down to the warp core and EPS conduits was refit, using Cardassian that were scavenged from various battlefields. Thanks to the assistance of a number of Cardassian dissidents within Starfleet and Starfleet Intelligence, it took the yards somewhere around four months to bring her back into service, even fixing some of the faults caused by her rushed first launch. She was named Dallas and put into service in early October 2374.

What exacly she did for the remainder of the war remains classified, but what is known is that by the time the treaty of Bajor was signed, she was scirting somewhere around the far edges of Cardassian space and had to take a very circuitous route to return home, lest the presence of such a blatant espionage effort derail the peace.

Ultimately, this was a very unlikely event.

Upon her return, the Black Fleet once more dissolves into te shadows of secrecy.

With the final death of the Khitomer Accords in 2396 and correspondingly rising tensions, the Black fleet became slightly more visible, by way of Dallas nearly causing a three-way diplomatic incident between the Empire, the Ferderation and the Cardassian Republic and nerly triggering the war years early.

In 2400, a number of Honourbound[3] ships, among them the I.K.S. Rotarran, carrying former Federation Ambassador Worf and former Chancellor Martok's family was attacked by KDF warships as they crossed the Klingon border into the Nimbus sector. Even though defended by the lion's share of House Martok's remaining ships, the Honourbound were only saved by the intervention of a neutral 'Cardassian' ship supposedly on the way to one of the many worlds suffering from the ongoing nightmare that was the Romulan civil war.

Afterwards, it quickly turned out that the ship was not a part of the Cardassian Republic Defence Forces. Chancellor Jm'Aroc claimed the Fedeartion to be at fault, demanding that they hand over the persons responsible, the Honourbound and pay for the damages. At the same time, an effort was made to convince the Cardassians to demand the return of their ship.

However, it was Cardassian elder statesman Elim Garak who pointed out that a number of Cardassian ships, from small patrokl craft up to and including a number of Galor and Keldon-class cruisers were still unaccounted for, and that much of the piracy problem that had been so endemic in the farther reaches of Cardassian space and beyond in the years after the war had used stolen Cardassian hardware.

It is, of course, now well known that Garak knew very well who and what Dallas was, and that he assisted the Federation because he a saw it as in the best interest of Cardassia. What he was given in return is still classified, but a meeting with the half-Bajoran daughter of the late Guhl Dukat at her residence in Annapolis, Maryland, on Earth is known to have taken place some months later.[4]

The Klingons, having no actual proof that Starfleet was involved re-called their Embassy from Earth as well as Cardassia Prime, but in the end, Jm'Aroc decided that it was not yet time for war and instead re-doubled his efforts to ut the Klingon industrial base on a more even keel with the Federation, as well as seeking out Allies. It is presumed that contact between the True Way and the KDF was made around this time.

When war finally did break out, Dallas was actually supposed to be scrapped for want of spare parts, but the Cardassian Republic, well aware hat they were next should the Federation fall, quietly approached Starfleet and offered technical assistance to keep Dallas running, as part of a larger secret agreement on intelligence sharing and mutual technical aid. The only requirement was that efforts had to be taken so that those parts could not be traced back to the CRDF, and that Cardassia would publicly denounce the Federation for using the Dallas, should they be caught. Of course that agreement would be rendered moot eventually, but for the moment it kept Dallas in service.

As with her first war, most of her exploits are classified still, but the incident is the one that outed the existence of the Black Fleet to the general public and that also saw the near-death of both the Federation President and Chancellor Sirella of the Honourbound. This incident is well-publicised elsewhere though.[5]

The end of the war saw Dallas finally relegated to retirement.[6] She was scrapped in 2423, though her Captain's chair and Federation ship's plaque are preserved at the Intelligence Museum at Starfleet Intelligence Headquarters in Bletchley Park, Earth, while her main deflector and Cardassian Registry stripes can be viewed on Cardassia Prime.



Notes:

[1]For the record, in this verse, S31 is... let's say they are the Federation's Black Ops/Wetwork arm with shades of the 00 Section. Entirely sanctioned, entirely supervised and entirely not what Sloan made it out to be to Bashir. Here, Sloan was a former member, who went off on his own when he was told that there were lines he was not to cross. He merely used an authority he had no right to when interacting with the crew of DS9. They have no control over the Black Fleet, and they were mercilessly culled after the events of DSC Season 2. Starfleet Intelligence is aware that something fishy happend to the Discovery, but they never discovered any details.

[2] It's near one of the many smaller Starfleet yard facilities, located a couple light years from Memory Alpha. Since something of that size and complexity can't really be kept secret in any recognizeable Trekverse, the activities of the Black Fleet are camouflaged under the activities of that section of Starfleet R&D that evaluates alien tech. At almost no point is the Black Fleet more than a dozen ships, most of them a lot smaller than the Dallas, think something of the size of Neelix's ship as a guideline for most, so they do tend to get lost in the clutter.

[3]Meaning Klingon dissidents who deplore both the end of the Alliance with the Federation and Chancellor Jm'Aroc's "Romulan" way of solidifying his hold on power that remind way too many of the way things had been in the 23rd Century, both pre-DSC and TOS eras. Worf is one of them, which is why the Feds had to pull him from his post.

[4]And here we have one of the two PODs for my Star Trek AU. Tora Ziyal surviving the events of "Sacrifice of Angels" shouldn't materially affect the course of the war itself, especially when Dukat is led to believe that she died.

At any rate, she was spirited away to Earth, had her head sucked dry by SI and then renounced anything to do with both sides of her heritage. In the course of this, she inadvertently caused some minor HR rotations to be changed, which in turn led to POD 2 after the war and a different makeup of Starfleet Command leading to a more pragmatic Starfleet and Fedceration leadership.

She revealed being alive after the war, but refused to go back to Cardassia. She works closely with the Cardassian exile community in Federation space and her three part-human kids are probably among the rarest combination of genetic traits around. I.e. she has a happy life.

[5]Totally not because I don't want to nail myself down just yet. Honest, guv.

[6]To be replaced by a technobabble monstrosity of a ship co-developed by the Federation and their new best buds, able to disguise and outright fake energy and weapons signatures, along with a hell of a cloaking device. Not that Janes Information Group know this...
 
Last edited:
Jane's All the Galaxy's Fighting Starships #9 (2429 edition)

Name: U.S.S. Dallas (NX-1984)
Type: Experimental Testbed Ship/Starfleet Intelligence Special Mission Cruiser
Class: Keldon-class (19 of ?, built overall: N/A)
Nationality: Cardassian Union/Federation Starfleet (United Federation of Planets)
Service: Starfleet Service Date: 2375 - 2423)
Armaments: 9x Spiral Wave Disruptors; 6x Spiral Wave Disruptors; 2x Fore, 1x Aft Torpedo launchers
Speed: (Type 2 Scale) Warp 7 (Max Cruise), Warp 9.1 (at extreme risk)

The length and nature of the 4th Klingon War revealed a number of truths about the Federation to the general public that were somewhat contrary to the Federation's ethos, such as the clandestine existence of a small fleet of ships in various sizes that answered directly to the Commander in Chief of Starfleet and the head of Starfleet Intelligence outside the normal chain of command.

U.S.S. Dallas is one such ship. Like the rest of the Black Fleet, Dallas was primarily used for Intelligence gathering and scouting missions during the war, a vital role she performed well in, but the majorty of her service with Starfleet was before then.

Dallas started her existence as the Cardassian Navy ship Stellar Envoy. Laid down in the brief detente period between the destruction of the Obsidian Order and the arrival of the Dominion in Cardassian space, the Stellar Envoy languished as little more than the basic, bare spaceframe with a number of hull panels for several years until after the outbreak of the Dominion War.

When the Federation and the Klingon Empire proved to be a tougher nut to crack than the Dominion had anticipated, the Cardassian Central Command decided to comb through the various shipyards for halted or stalled ships that could be finished relatively quickly and the Stellar Envoy was finished in record time, using both Dominion-supplied construction methods and Cardassian convict labour. Entering service the same day Starfleet launched Operation Return, the Stellar Envoy was pressed into service without a number of minor issues that had become apparent during her abbreviated shakedown cruise ever being addressed during her brief time in Cardassian service.

When the Cardassians tried to change sides and the Dominion purged those disloyal elements they could reach, the Stellar Envoy was engaged by two Dominion ships, but an unresolved issue in the secondary EPS overloaded ninety percent of her onboard systems and the rest of the ship a drifting hulk. The survivours of the crew abandoned ship, but were executed on the spot by the Dominion. The ship itself was left adrift, and before it could either be scuttled or towed to a loyal base, a Federation Intelligence gathering raid swept through the same system.

Thus having come into the possession of a Keldon-class cruiser hull that had slagged most of it's own internal systems, most commanders would have tractored the ship into the nearest sun and moved on. However, the few systems that still worked was the structural integrity field, which left Starfleet with a fully intact hull that no one else knew about. The section of Starfleet Intelligence that oversaw the Black Fleet and Section 31 was always in the market for more ships, and the raid had been carried out by them. Therefore, it took a few hasty subspace calls, and within two hours, an S31[1] strike team had boarded the Stellar Envoy, secured her and she was under tow back to Federation lines, and on to the location of the yard that services the Black Fleet.[2]

The exact nature of the lengthy refit that followed are still classified, but what is known is that the power systems, down to the warp core and EPS conduits was refit, using Cardassian that were scavenged from various battlefields. Thanks to the assistance of a number of Cardassian dissidents within Starfleet and Starfleet Intelligence, it took the yards somewhere around four months to bring her back into service, even fixing some of the faults caused by her rushed first launch. She was named Dallas and put into service in early October 2374.

What exacly she did for the remainder of the war remains classified, but what is known is that by the time the treaty of Bajor was signed, she was scirting somewhere around the far edges of Cardassian space and had to take a very circuitous route to return home, lest the presence of such a blatant espionage effort derail the peace.

Ultimately, this was a very unlikely event.

Upon her return, the Black Fleet once more dissolves into te shadows of secrecy.

With the final death of the Khitomer Accords in 2396 and correspondingly rising tensions, the Black fleet became slightly more visible, by way of Dallas nearly causing a three-way diplomatic incident between the Empire, the Ferderation and the Cardassian Republic and nerly triggering the war years early.

In 2400, a number of Honourbound[3] ships, among them the I.K.S. Rotarran, carrying former Federation Ambassador Worf and former Chancellor Martok's family was attacked by KDF warships as they crossed the Klingon border into the Nimbus sector. Even though defended by the lion's share of House Martok's remaining ships, the Honourbound were only saved by the intervention of a neutral 'Cardassian' ship supposedly on the way to one of the many worlds suffering from the ongoing nightmare that was the Romulan civil war.

Afterwards, it quickly turned out that the ship was not a part of the Cardassian Republic Defence Forces. Chancellor Jm'Aroc claimed the Fedeartion to be at fault, demanding that they hand over the persons responsible, the Honourbound and pay for the damages. At the same time, an effort was made to convince the Cardassians to demand the return of their ship.

However, it was Cardassian elder statesman Elim Garak who pointed out that a number of Cardassian ships, from small patrokl craft up to and including a number of Galor and Keldon-class cruisers were still unaccounted for, and that much of the piracy problem that had been so endemic in the farther reaches of Cardassian space and beyond in the years after the war had used stolen Cardassian hardware.

It is, of course, now well known that Garak knew very well who and what Dallas was, and that he assisted the Federation because he a saw it as in the best interest of Cardassia. What he was given in return is still classified, but a meeting with the half-Bajoran daughter of the late Guhl Dukat at her residence in Annapolis, Maryland, on Earth is known to have taken place some months later.[4]

The Klingons, having no actual proof that Starfleet was involved re-called their Embassy from Earth as well as Cardassia Prime, but in the end, Jm'Aroc decided that it was not yet time for war and instead re-doubled his efforts to ut the Klingon industrial base on a more even keel with the Federation, as well as seeking out Allies. It is presumed that contact between the True Way and the KDF was made around this time.

When war finally did break out, Dallas was actually supposed to be scrapped for want of spare parts, but the Cardassian Republic, well aware hat they were next should the Federation fall, quietly approached Starfleet and offered technical assistance to keep Dallas running, as part of a larger secret agreement on intelligence sharing and mutual technical aid. The only requirement was that efforts had to be taken so that those parts could not be traced back to the CRDF, and that Cardassia would publicly denounce the Federation for using the Dallas, should they be caught. Of course that agreement would be rendered moot eventually, but for the moment it kept Dallas in service.

As with her first war, most of her exploits are classified still, but the incident is the one that outed the existence of the Black Fleet to the general public and that also saw the near-death of both the Federation President and Chancellor Sirella of the Honourbound. This incident is well-publicised elsewhere though.[5]

The end of the war saw Dallas finally relegated to retirement.[6] She was scrapped in 2423, though her Captain's chair and Federation ship's plaque are preserved at the Intelligence Museum at Starfleet Intelligence Headquarters in Bletchley Park, Earth, while her main deflector and Cardassian Registry stripes can be viewed on Cardassia Prime.



Notes:

[1]For the record, in this verse, S31 is... let's say they are the Federation's Black Ops/Wetwork arm with shades of the 00 Section. Entirely sanctioned, entirely supervised and entirely not what Sloan made it out to be to Bashir. Here, Sloan was a former member, who went off on his own when he was told that there were lines he was not to cross. He merely used an authority he had no right to when interacting with the crew of DS9. They have no control over the Black Fleet, and they were mercilessly culled after the events of DSC Season 2. Starfleet Intelligence is aware that something fishy happend to the Discovery, but they never discovered any details.

[2] It's near one of the many smaller Starfleet yard facilities, located a couple light years from Memory Alpha. Since something of that size and complexity can't really be kept secret in any recognizeable Trekverse, the activities of the Black Fleet are camouflaged under the activities of that section of Starfleet R&D that evaluates alien tech. At almost no point is the Black Fleet more than a dozen ships, most of them a lot smaller than the Dallas, think something of the size of Neelix's ship as a guideline for most, so they do tend to get lost in the clutter.

[3]Meaning Klingon dissidents who deplore both the end of the Alliance with the Federation and Chancellor Jm'Aroc's "Romulan" way of solidifying his hold on power that remind way too many of the way things had been in the 23rd Century, both pre-DSC and TOS eras. Worf is one of them, which is why the Feds had to pull him from his post.

[4]And here we have one of the two PODs for my Star Trek AU. Tora Ziyal surviving the events of "Sacrifice of Angels" shouldn't materially affect the course of the war itself, especially when Dukat is led to believe that she died.

At any rate, she was spirited away to Earth, had her head sucked dry by SI and then renounced anything to do with both sides of her heritage. In the course of this, she inadvertently caused some minor HR rotations to be changed, which in turn led to POD 2 after the war and a different makeup of Starfleet Command leading to a more pragmatic Starfleet and Fedceration leadership.

She revealed being alive after the war, but refused to go back to Cardassia. She works closely with the Cardassian exile community in Federation space and her three part-human kids are probably among the rarest combination of genetic traits around. I.e. she has a happy life.

[5]Totally not because I don't want to nail myself down just yet. Honest, guv.

[6]To be replaced by a technobabble monstrosity of a ship co-developed by the Federation and their new best buds, able to disguise and outright fake energy and weapons signatures, along with a hell of a cloaking device. Not that Janes Information Group know this...
Good stuff! Would make for an interesting TL.
 
page_4.jpg
page_5.jpg

Tigers of the Luftwaffe, Issue No.3
page_8.jpg
page_9.jpg

Kamikaze 1946, Issue No.3


Frankincane
Link: www.whatifmodellers.com/index.…

Hawker Hurricane Mk.IIC-23
White 32, 423 Belarus Escadrille, 420 International Regiment, Socialist Union Red Army Air Force
unknown airstrip, Battle of Kursk, July, 1943

By September, 1941, the Belarus Army Air Force had ceased to exist as an effective fighting force. On the 16th of that month it was officially absorbed into the Socialist Union Red Army Air Force, its front line personnel being concentrated into several International units, including the 420 International Fighter Regiment, alongside Ukrainians (whose air force had also collapsed).

The 420th was initially equipped with SUAC I-153s and I-16s during the Autumn of '41 and subsequent winter. During the spring of '42 they were equipped with SUAC MiG-3Ts, which were replaced by various models of the Hawker Hurricane. By the time of Kursk the 421st Ukrainian Escadrille was flying the IL-2 and both the 422nd Ukrainian and 423rd Belarus Escadrille were armed with Hurricanes.

The Hurricanes flown by the 420th were initially second-hand Hurricane Mk.Is, but by late 1942 new Mk.IIs were entering service. By then most Red Hurricanes assigned to combat units were of the locally modified -20 version, having been re-armed with 12.7mm UB machine guns and 20mm ShVAK cannon before delivery to the front line. However, the Belarus White 32 photographed during the Battle of Kursk is armed differently. First flown in June 1942, the -23 conversion of the Hurricane featured two 23 mm Volkov-Yartsev Vya-23 cannon, supplemented two 7.62mm ShKAS machine guns. A few Hurricane Mk.IIBs were fitted with this combination for combat trails, but about half of the all-cannon-armed Mk.IIC Hurricanes were were converted to -23 standard, the remainder receiving the lighter -20 conversion. The -23 is easy to identify, owing to its long cannon barrels protruding from a prominent fairing and larger blisters on the upper wings. As seen here, both the -20 and -23 were also commonly armed with six RS.82 rockets for ground attack missions (and the heavy -23 was used exclusively for ground attack).

White 32 displays another wrinkle in the story of Hurricane deliveries to the Socialist Union. Look closely at the fairing ahead of the tail wheel and you'll notice that it's forward portion is truncated. An even closer inspection will reveal that there is a V-shaped notch in the fuselage just ahead of this fairing. Also, the Vokes filter is painted blue, not Sky like the rest of the lower surfaces. That's because this IIC-23 was converted from one of 60 Sea Hurricanes delivered to the Socialist Union in April and May, 1943. Themselves converted for the Royal Navy from Hurricane Mk.IICs built under RAF contract, these planes had been declared as surplus to RN requirements soon after delivery. With few flight hours logged they were dismantled, crated and shipped to the Socialist Union via Iran. Apparently most of the batch showed signs of having been built for use against Japan, as a RAF Far East-standard Dark Earth and Dark Green camouflage showed through under the RN's Slate Green and Sea Grey paint. Once rebuilt, partially repainted with their British markings hidden under standard USRAAF paint, prepared with Red radios, spare Vokes filters and re-armed, 30 of these nearly-new Sea Hurricanes replaced all of the 420th existing Hurricanes just days before the Germans launched their Kursk offensive.

The Belarusian and Ukrainian flown Sea Hurricanes IIC-20s and -23s performed well during Kursk. Together with the crews of the Ukrainian-flown Il-2s, several battle honours were received by both the units and personnel of the 420th International Regiment. Crews flew several sorties a day, performing close air support, battlefield area interdiction and armed reconnaissance missions.

The regiment was relieved from combat in August, 1943, to rest and re-equip, returning to combat during the winter armed completely with new Il-2s.
 
Top